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      Understanding Covid-19 Testing in Wastewater

      May 12, 2022 at 2:00 PM / by Evan Walters posted in wastewater, USEPA, covid-19, coronavirus, omicron

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      Have you ever heard about monitoring wastewater for Covid-19 outbreaks? If you haven’t, let me be the first to tell you that environmental chemists can monitor Coronavirus outbreaks on a routine basis. This procedure represents a scientific field referred to as Wastewater-Based Epidemiology.

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      Improving Your EPH Fractionation Workflow

      May 5, 2022 at 2:00 PM / by Deanna Bissonnette posted in wastewater, EPH, water treatment, environmental compliance, TurboVap EH, ISOLUTE EPH Cartridges

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      We all know that we need to make sure that we have consistency and accuracy in our data. Determining and understanding the roots of user error is the easy part, but how to minimize or eliminate user error can be difficult. A critical point in the sample prep workflow comes when we move samples from processing to evaporation. This transfer step is where most accidents usually happen, be it mixing up of samples, mislabeling of collection vessels, or even dropping the sample, all of these scenarios are detrimental to analyses providing inaccurate results or no results at all.

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      What do you need to know about concentrating PFAS Analytes?

      April 7, 2022 at 2:00 PM / by Michael Ebitson posted in Solid-phase extraction, per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, PFAS, solvent evaporation, evaporation systems

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      If you are a chemist that is either a beginner or an expert in extracting per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) there are always going to be questions that come up after the extraction has taken place. Most often, questions occur at the concentration step. Such topics include water bath temperature, extract dryness, evaporation rates, and even water in the extract. How can one or all of the topics impact your analysis and where are good starting points?

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      Where Does Wastewater Come From?

      March 24, 2022 at 5:00 PM / by Michael Ebitson posted in wastewater, US EPA 625.1, epa method 608.3, wastewater testing, wastewater sources

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      I can remember asking myself this question many years ago at my first environmental laboratory job. I was manually shaking out separatory funnels for EPA 625 and 608 and each sample looked drastically different from the next as I was pouring them into each separatory funnel. At the time, I thought the term wastewater meant anything that came from a sewer pipe and that it mainly consisted of human waste. When I looked deeper into the possible sample categories for these methods, I was very surprised by the different sample types required to be tested as wastewater. With that, it prompted me to ask myself well where does it come from?

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      How will the UCMR 5 Program Help Determine if Drinking Water is Safe?

      March 3, 2022 at 2:45 PM / by Evan Walters posted in contamination, Drinking water, UCMR, USEPA, assessment monitoring

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      If you live in an urban area or city, then you may be familiar with paying a water bill for the water you utilize in your home. For the most part, this water bill covers the cost of water testing, treatment, and transportation from your regional water facility to your home. When you look at the life cycle of your tap water, the journey it takes to make it to your home is quite amazing.

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      What is Wastewater?

      February 7, 2022 at 5:09 PM / by Evan Walters posted in wastewater, USEPA, NPDES

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      Throughout my entire life I have always had an appreciation for water. Growing up in the Midwest, I spent my summers at the lake and winters in the snow. As a child, school taught me that water makes up ~70% of the earth’s surface and that most of that water is oceanic water (aka-salt water).

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      The Problem of PFAS: Part 4 - Tracking Contamination

      February 3, 2022 at 4:00 PM / by Matt Harden posted in EPA Method 537.1, EPA Method 533, PFOS, EPA, PFOA, ISO 16175

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      Welcome to part 4 of our blog series “The Problem of PFAS”. If you are just tuning in, you might want to take a look at the previous blogs of this series as we provided background on the PFAS controversy (Part 1), a review of the regulatory guidelines for  monitoring PFAS contamination in the environment (Part 2), and most recently, a look at which analytical method might work the best for your lab (Part 3). If you are up to speed on this series, you should now have a good baseline on what we’ll be discussing today.

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      The Importance of Air-Drying Sorbent in Preparation for GC Analyzed Extracts

      January 13, 2022 at 9:00 AM / by Deanna Bissonnette posted in SPE solid phase extraction, Sorbent, tech tips, Drying, gas chromatography

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      When you are extracting SVOCs from aqueous samples and analyzing via Gas Chromatography (GC), every step within a solid phase extraction (SPE) procedure is imperative, but one of the most important steps that must be done properly is the air-dry step post sample loading.

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      Hexachloroethane: Too Hot to Touch?

      December 16, 2021 at 2:00 PM / by Matt Harden posted in wastewater, TurboVap, concentration, Hexachloroethane, heat block, water bath

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      Testing for toxic organic contaminants in environmental samples often requires the following three sample preparation steps: 1) Extraction, 2) Concentration, and 3) Analysis. The goal during these three steps is to isolate the contaminants from the sample matrix and concentrate them so they can be detected and quantified. In this blog, I will discuss the importance of understanding how different types of concentration equipment can impact your analyte recoveries and the overall performance of your extraction procedure.

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      Why is EPA Method 549.2 a Challenging Method?

      November 11, 2021 at 8:00 AM / by Deanna Bissonnette posted in Drinking water, diquat, paraquat, epa 549.2

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      When I first saw EPA Method 549.2 only had two compounds, I said to myself: “WOW! That’s a breeze! Only two compounds to worry about, so it can’t be that difficult to extract!” Seeing as I was used to the methods with 100+ compounds to worry about, naturally, I would believe this at first glance. However, I was severely mistaken…these two compounds are far from easy to recover from a water sample. To be successful with EPA Method 549.2, you need to make sure you have the right chemistries taking place in order to recover these compounds well or even at all.

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