Application of multivariate statistical techniques in the water quality assessment of Danube river, Serbia

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The aim of this article is to evaluate the quality of the Danube River in its course through Serbia as well as to demonstrate the possibilities for using three statistical methods: Principal Component Analysis (PCA), Factor Analysis (FA) and Cluster Analysis (CA) in the surface water quality management. Given that the Danube is an important trans-boundary river, thorough water quality monitoring by sampling at different distances during shorter and longer periods of time is not only ecological, but also a political issue. Monitoring was carried out at monthly intervals from January to December 2011, at 17 sampling sites. The obtained data set was treated by multivariate techniques in order, firstly, to identify the similarities and differences between sampling periods and locations, secondly, to recognize variables that affect the temporal and spatial water quality changes and thirdly, to present the anthropogenic impact on water quality parameters.

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