Brad Meadows is Vice President and Laboratory Director at the US company BSK Labs, which runs a number of environmental laboratories. In an exclusive white paper, Brad Meadow reports how BSK Labs meets common challenges such as comprehensive sample preparation using automated inline techniques. Such techniques with automated Inline Ultrafiltration being the most important have helped BSK labs save more than USD 30,000 every year.
One of the most important methods used in the laboratories of BSK is the determination of inorganic anions in different kinds of waters in accordance with EPA method 300.1 Part A. The nature of these samples is often such that filtration is mandatory prior to analysis in order to prevent damage to the analysis system and achieve accurate results. With a daily throughput of 200 to 250 samples per day, sample preparation used to be expensive for BSK Labs, as it involved a lot of manual work as well as costly consumables.
Fully automated Inline Ultrafiltration as it is used in BSK Lab’s laboratories today on their Metrohm ion chromatography systems provides a very cost effective solution to this challenge. Using automated Inline Ultrafiltration enabled BSK Labs to save USD 12,000 on filters alone. Moreover, compared to manual filtration used previously, BSK now saves three minutes working time per sample resulting in savings of roughly USD 13,000 in annual expenditure. Adding to this the savings resulting from automating sample dilution (which is often required), total savings for BSK Labs add up to almost USD 30,000 p. a.