PCB Analysis

Pace Analytical has experience with several methodologies for both total PCB Aroclor and PCB Congener Specific analysis. Historically, PCB Aroclor analysis is the most commonly and widely used methodology for the testing of PCB. However, with the improvement of laboratory techniques over the past 65 years and the introduction of environmental toxicology, investigators/regulators are looking closer at individual congeners. With investigations of individual PCB congeners, a shift in analysis has occurred from total Aroclor analysis to Congener Specific analysis with “Total PCB.” With congener specific analysis many investigators have developed specific PCB congener lists for the needs of their projects and studies. This development has lead to a greater need for versatility in PCB analysis. Several methods do exist to report PCB congener information on environmental samples. These methods all contain lists of PCB congeners. The NOAA PCB congener method cites 20 congeners to be reported. The USACE PCB congener method cites 22 congeners to be reported. The SW-846 8082 method cites 19 congeners to be reported. The WHO lists cites 12 congeners. Pace Analytical is committed to remaining at the forefront of analytical development and process improvement to serve the evolving needs of the environmental community.

When analyzing for PCBs, three main types of instrumentation are used. The most common and generally considered the work-horse of PCB analysis is gas chromatography-electron capture detection (GC-ECD), the next instrument is gas chromatography (GC) with low resolution, electron ionization mass spectrometry (MS), and in recent years the industry has added the most sensitive instrument thus far for PCB congener analysis ― High Resolution Gas Chromatography coupled with High Resolution Mass Spectrometry HRGC/HRMS.  The Pace Laboratory network offers all of this instrumentation along with supporting methodology and expertise.

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