Chromophoric Dissolved Organic Matter or Colored Dissolved Organic Matter (CDOM): Both refer to organic matter in water that absorbs strongly in the ultraviolet (UV) spectrum. Fluorescent Dissolved Organic Matter (fDOM) refers to the fraction of CDOM that fluoresces. fDOM is a surrogate for CDOM, and a fast and easy means of tracking DOM in natural waters.
Measuring CDOM/fDOM is important because concentrations of CDOM affect submerged aquatic vegetation, coral reefs and other benthic communities.
Other fDOM applications include:
- Continuous monitoring of wastewater discharge. fDOM fluorescence corresponds to total organic carbon (TOC), which is an indicator of discharge water quality.
- fDOM concentration can indicate the dispersion, transport and mixing of a water mass.
- Hydrology studies demonstrate connection between flow/discharge and fDOM concentrations in rivers and floodplains.