Chemical Analysis of Contaminated Land (Sheffield Analytical by K. Clive Thompson, Paul Nathanail

By K. Clive Thompson, Paul Nathanail

Reference at the chemical research of doubtless infected land. Addresses all elements of the research, from supply of the samples to the laboratory to the presentation of the implications to the consumers. For practitioners.

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Sample containers with no initial sample preparation (ISO/FDIS 14507 2002; Standing Committee of Analysts 2003). It may be necessary to retain some of the solid for reference purposes or subsequent further analyses. A sufficiently large sub-sample should be taken to ensure that the portion analysed is as representative of the original sample as possible. If the as received samples contain a significant amount of large or 38 CHEMICAL ANALYSIS OF CONTAMINATED LAND heterogeneous debris, replicate sub-samples should be taken and analysed to improve the quality of the data.

Secondly, there is no clear message or direction given from regulators, or contractors and consultants who procure analytical services. Regulators are faced with huge problems when dealing with issues that are essentially of a site-specific nature. These problems include the specification or prescription (for all sites) of the requirement of a single suite of determinations. In many instances, the specified suite of determinations may not be appropriate for specific individual sites. In addition, it would appear that most contractors and consultants would rather be told what specific analyses need to be carried out than take responsibility for their own requirements.

However, the use of an accredited method in itself is not a guarantee of the generation of good quality data. Methods, whether accredited or not, need to be used in correct circumstances, especially in their applicability to specific or defined matrices. A long-established approach gaining more popularity is the recognition that performance-based methodology has practical benefits that lead to improvements in the quality of data. The specification of minimum performance standards eliminates the need to specify defined methodology, but prescribes the minimum performance requirements that all methods should satisfy.

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