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MPHL : DEC Semi Volatile Section


Sadia Muneem — Supervisor
Albert Woody – Lead Scientist

Purpose
 
The SEMI-VOLATILE ORGANICS SECTION performs the analyses of pesticides, herbicides, semi-volatile organic compounds and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in drinking water, wastewater, groundwater, aquatic tissues, hazardous wastes, soils, sediments, sludges, leachates, and in consumer products for possible tampering or adulteration. Analysis of multi-media samples is carried out using capillary column gas chromatographs equipped with electron capture detectors (GC/ECD) or mass spectrometers (GC/MS), and high performance liquid chromatographs (HPLC) equipped with fluorescence detectors.
 
 Instrumentation 
 
Analysis of multi-media samples is carried out using capillary column gas chromatographs equipped with mass spectrometer detector (GC/MS) and Electron Capture detector (GC/ECD) A typical GC/ECD & GC/MS is shown below: Most methods involves a lengthy extraction process to derivatize the sample to a thermally stable volatile form before the analyses by GC.
 
·       Agilent GC/ECD
·       Agilent GC/MS
·       HPLC
 

The ECD or electron capture detector measures
electron-absorbing components (usually halogenated) by creating an electrical field in which molecules exiting the GC column can be detected by the drop in current in the field. The ECD uses a radioactive beta particle (electron) emitter in conjunction with a makeup gas flowing through the detector chamber
 
 
 
 
 
 
Gas Chromatograph – Electron Capture Detector (GC/ECD)
 

Gas chromatography–mass spectrometry
(GC-MS) is a method that combines two techniques to form a single method of analyzing samples. Gas-chromatography separates the elements of a sample and the mass-spectrometry characterizes each element making it possible to qualitatively and quantitatively analyze samples. The GC-MS is a system tailored to meet the rigorous demands for scientist in both routine analysis and research.
Gas Chromatograph – Mass Spectrometer (GC/MS)
 
Elements Routinely Analyzed
 
The laboratory analyzes pesticides, herbicides, haloacetic acids, PCBs, semi-volatile organic compounds in drinking water by various EPA. Pesticides, PCBs and semi-volatiles in wastewater, soil, hazardous waste, sediments, and sludge are analyzed by EPA method 8270 in support of State and federal environmental regulations.
 
 
Test/Matrix
Container**
Sample Size
Preservation
Holding Time
Method
Drinking Water
EDB & DBCP
2 Sample/Glass vials
1 Field Blank/sample
40 mL
4° C, sodium thiosulfate
 
14 days
EPA 504.1
Chlorinated pesticides & PCBs
1 Glass amber bottle
1L
4° C, sodium thiosulfate
14 days
EPA 508    .
Chlorinated acids herbicides
3 Glass amber bottle
60 mL
4° C, sodium thiosulfate or sodium sulfite
14 days
EPA 515.4
 
*EPA 515.3
Semi-volatile pesticides
*Toxaphene/PCBs
2 Glass amber bottle
1L
4° C, sodium sulfite pH <2 (with 6N HCl)
14 days
EPA 525.2
Carbamate pesticides
2 Glass amber bottle
60 mL
4° C, sodium thiosulfate pH <3 (with MCA acid)
28 days
EPA 531.2
Wastewater
Chlorinated pesticides & PCBs
Glass bottle
1L
4° C, sodium thiosulfate
7 days
EPA 608
Hazardous Wastes
Chlorinated pesticides & PCBs
2 Glass bottle
 
1 L
4° C, sodium thiosulfate
7 days
EPA 8081
Chlorinated pesticides & PCBs
Glass jar
8 oz
4° C
14 days
EPA 8081
  
*Pending EPA Provisional Certifications
** Glass vials must have Teflon-lined septum caps; glass bottles must have Teflon-lined caps
NA = not applicable
 
 
Potential Health Concerns and Environmental Effects 
 
SVOCs include a variety of chemicals, which can have short or long term adverse health effects which can range from being highly toxic to having no known health effects. Some are suspected to be cancer causing in humans and some are known to be carcinogenic in animals and humans.