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  • 1. Quality is a Lousy Idea- If it’s Only an Idea
  • 2. Quality Assurance vs. Quality Control Quality Assurance An overall management plan to guarantee the integrity of data (The “system”) Quality Control A series of analytical measurements used to assess the quality of the analytical data (The “tools”)
  • 3. True Value vs. Measured Value
    • True Value
    • The known, accepted value of a quantifiable property
    • Measured Value
    • The result of an individual’s measurement of a quantifiable property
  • 4. Accuracy vs. Precision
    • Accuracy
    • How well a measurement agrees with an accepted value
    • Precision
    • How well a series of measurements agree with each other
  • 5. Accuracy vs. Precision
  • 6. Systematic vs. Random Errors
    • Systematic Error
    • Avoidable error due to controllable variables in a measurement.
    • Random Errors
    • Unavoidable errors that are always present in any measurement. Impossible to eliminate
  • 7. Quality Control Measures
    • Standards and Calibration
    • Blanks
    • Recovery Studies
    • Precision and Accuracy Studies
    • Method Detection Limits
    • NJQLs
  • 8. Standards and Calibration
    • Prepared vs. Purchased Standard
    • Signals: Peak Area, Beer’s Law
    • Calibration Curves
    • Continuing Calibration Checks
    • Internal Standards
    • Performance Testing .
  • 9. Calibration Curves
    • Graphical representation of the relationship between:
      • The analytical signal
    • The concentration of the analyte
    and
  • 10.  
  • 11. Continuing Calibration Verification
    • Many methods don’t require that daily calibration curves are prepared
    • A “calibration verification” is
    • analyzed with each batch of samples
  • 12. Sample Batch
    • 10 - 20 samples (method defined) or less
    • Same matrix
    • Same sample prep and analysis
    • Contains a full set of
    • QC samples
  • 13. Internal Standards
    • A compound chemically similar to the analyte
    • Not expected to be present in the sample
    • Cannot interfere in the analysis
    • Added to the calibration standards and to the samples in identical amounts .
  • 14. Internal Standards
    • Refines the calibration process
    • Analytical signals for calibration standards are compared to those for internal standards
    • Eliminates differences in random and systematic errors between samples and standards
  • 15. Performance Testing
    • Blind samples submitted to laboratories
    ? ? ? Labs must periodically analyze with acceptable results in order to maintain accreditation
  • 16. Blanks, Blanks, Blanks
    • Laboratory Reagent Blanks
    • Instrument Blanks
    • Field Reagent Blanks
    • Trip Blanks
  • 17. Laboratory Reagent Blanks
    • Contains every reagent used in the analysis
    • Is subjected to all analytical procedures
    • Must give signal below detection limit
    • Most methods require one with every batch
  • 18. Instrument Blank
    • A clean sample (e.g., distilled water) processed through the instrumental steps of the measurement process; used to determine instrument contamination.
  • 19. Field Reagent Blanks
    • Prepared in the lab, taken to the field
    • Opened at the sampling site, exposed to sampling equipment, returned to the lab.
  • 20. Trip Blanks
    • Prepared in the lab, taken to the field
    • Not opened
    • Returned to the lab
    • Not always required in EPA methods
  • 21. Recovery Studies
    • Matrix Spikes
    • Laboratory Control Samples
    • Surrogates .
  • 22. Matrix Spikes
    • Sample spiked with a known amount of analyte
    • Subjected to all sample prep and analytical procedures
    • Determines the effect of the matrix on analyte recovery
    • Normally one per batch
  • 23. Laboratory Control Sample
    • Subjected to all sample prep and
    • analytical procedures
    • Analyte spiked into reagent water
  • 24. Laboratory Control Sample
    • Also known as:
    • Laboratory Fortified Blank (LFB)
    • Quality Control Sample (QCS)
  • 25. Surrogates
    • Similar to an internal standard
    • Added to all analytical samples, and to all QC samples to monitor method performance, usually during sample prep
    • Methods often have specific surrogate recovery criteria
    • Most common in Organic methods
  • 26. Quality Control Measures
    • Standards and Calibration
    • Blanks
    • Recovery Studies
    • Precision and Accuracy Studies
    • Method Detection Limits
    • NJQLs
  • 27. Precision and Accuracy
    • Required for initial certification and annually thereafter
    • A series of four laboratory control samples
    • Must meet accuracy (recovery) and precision (standard deviation) requirements, often in method
  • 28. Precision and Accuracy
    • Required with a change in instrumentation or personnel
    • Specific to the analyst
    • Other names include:
    • P&A, DOC, IDOC
  • 29. Method Detection Lim it
    • “ The minimum concentration of a substance that can be measured and reported with 99% confidence that the analyte concentration is greater than zero”
    • N.J.A.C 7:18 - 1.7
  • 30. Method Detection Limit
    • MDLs are determined according to 40 CFR, part 136, Appendix B
    • Seven replicate laboratory control samples, analyzed for precision
    • Multiply standard deviation by 3.14 (Student’s t- value)
  • 31. Method Detection Limit
    • Must be performed initially for certification
    • Must meet criteria specified in method
    • Must be performed with change in instrumentation or test method
    • Annually with ELCP
  • 32. New Jersey Quantitation Limits (NJQLs)
    • The minimum concentration of an analyte that can be quantified with statistical confidence
    • 5 x MDL, for the NJ Lab Certification Program