“All passes and all remains;
but our destiny is to pass,
to pass making paths,
making paths over the sea”

(Proverbs and songs, Fields of Castile, 1912 Antonio Machado, original in Spanish, translated by Armand F. Baker)

These verses, to whom Catalan musician Joan Manuel Serrat, added music (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DHQ-_bf9NFI), came into our mind at one of our Rodin idea generating sessions about “the river”.

We have been dealing with different features from rivers, from its owners to its “mood” or its “colour”. Without any restrictions we have been led to an infinity of new ideas and concepts and a very accurate approach to every process that we can fit into the “river” concept.

When we came across these verses, we didn’t see the point of discussing ancient Greek philosophers who proposed that everything changes and is different from one moment to another. Instead of keeping with “everything leaves”, we pointed that “everything remains”.

And that’s the exact point: what remains can tell us about the past. Although the river is always flowing, it is always different, water will take days, years, month’s or centuries to move through a landscape but when that happens something remains: sediments.

Knowledge of river sediments shows the intimate structure of the river, its past and the secrets that water hides behind its ebbs and flows.

We have analysed our sediment samples, read an infinity of sediment analysis reports, scrutinised tender technical specifications from different water authorities, government agencies and utilities and, in the end, we have even more questions!

Can we understand all the information that sediments can offer?

Can we know more things about the river history?

Are sediments something like a dynamic record of everything that passes by the river?

Are sampling strategies clear and detailed enough to get the maximum return from further analysis?

Which are the restrictions we have to face when sampling river sediments?

We may try to answer all of these questions by ourselves, but for sure your input, the experience of our customers, will give us a better understanding of what is required. That’s why we invite you to participate in this blog with your ideas, experiences, suggestions or answers about sediment sampling.

Don’t be shy please tell us your views.

Ramon Quiles