Interlaboratory Quality Assurance Aspects of the International Joint Commission's Great Lakes Monitoring Programs

    Published: Jan 1985

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    Quality assurance activities that identify comparability of environmental data produced by over 50 laboratories that support the Canada-United States Great Lakes International Surveillance Program are described. The activities include the development and use of stable natural reference standards for waters, sediments, and fish in an interlaboratory comparison studies program. The interlaboratory studies are designed to include 10 to 15 stable natural samples that for most studies are analyzed for 10 to 15 constituents by 25 to 35 laboratories. A typical simple study on total phosphorus in water is described. Interlaboratory results for each sample are ranked and then laboratory measurement bias identified by the method of Youden. Results deviating significantly from the interlaboratory median values are flagged by the method of Clark. A laboratory specific report is then prepared and provided to each participating laboratory and is made available to report writers who must typically work with results from different laboratories. These quality assurance activities are constructive and effective. Remedial measures are taken to improve the laboratory measurement process.


    interlaboratory, quality assurance, Great Lakes

    Author Information:

    Aspila, KI
    Quality Assurance and Methods Section, National Water Research Institute, Burlington, Ont.

    White, RE
    International Joint Commission, Great Lakes Regional Office, Windsor, Ont.

    Clark, JL
    International Joint Commission, Great Lakes Regional Office, Windsor, Ont.

    Committee/Subcommittee: D22.01

    DOI: 10.1520/STP30318S

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