Analytical methods may be applied to forensic or technical problem solving projects in a wide variety of situations, including natural resource damage sourcing. Common applications include:
- Attribution of source of hydrocarbons through multiple lines of evidence (PAHs + alkylated PAHs, Alkanes, speciated Naphthenic acids)
- Identification of the behaviour of wastewater contaminants by using PPCP and fecal sterols to identify areas under the influence of these processes. Results from these studies are often used to evaluate the need or efficacy of major capital projects in this area
- Identification of PCB sources through PCB congener profiles
- Identification and profiling of contaminants (and potential effects) by humans or biota vs. potential sources
Need a lab for your forensic or source fingerprinting project? SGS AXYS analyses are commonly used by clients where identification of the source or behaviour of contaminants can solve significant problems. All AXYS methods feature attributes enhancing fingerprinting or source identification projects including:
- Expansive analyte lists that are suitable for differentiating samples and sources.
- Use of isotope dilution quantification from multiple points of identification vs. standard regulatory methods. This provides greater defensible identification and quantification of analytes.
- Use of extensive clean-up and ultra-trace instrumentation to provide chromatographic clarity at very low levels.
- Demonstration of proficiency in analysis through world-wide inter-calibration exercises and ISO/IEC 17025 and NELAP accreditation.
- Ability to support international work through relevant permits and logistical expertise.
- Ability to perform work in all matrices associated with exposure or bioaccumulation.
As scientific leaders in the analysis of trace-level contaminants, SGS AXYS offers a wide range of fingerprinting analyses to suit your needs:
AXYS analyzes these compounds with a modified EPA 8270C/D and EPA 1625 method which includes a wide scope of compounds, very low detection limits and high levels of positive identification. Environmental matrices and hydrocarbons (HC) products can be tested to determine sample levels and/or sources.
Alkanes typically accompany PAH analysis as the alkane pattern can also aid in source determination. AXYS analyzes C12 to C36 Alkanes by an isotope dilution, GC-MS test.
AXYS provides analyses for sixty Naphthenic Acid Isomer Groups in multiple matrices, by LC-MS/MS. All crude oils and some finished HC products have unique and measurable NA profiles, so sources can be determined from this low detection limit, isomer test.
AXYS offers GC-MS and GC-HRMS analysis of PCB congeners. Both methods test for all 209 congeners, and can be used to identify sources. AXYS is accredited to report Aroclor values based on congener results which helps to interpret congener results vs. historic Aroclor results. AXYS has significant experience analyzing samples for PCB congeners and aroclors and has analyzed environmental and serum samples for 209 PCB congeners since 1994. AXYS developed and validated EPA Method 1668A, based on a pre-existing method and also provided validation data for EPA 1668C.
AXYS performs GC-HRMS measurement of 17 Hormones and 9 Sterols (EPA 1698) as well as 188 compounds by an expanded EPA 1694 – both in multiple matrices. The sterols found in ground or surface water may indicate source influences on that water through the presence and/or ratios of select compounds. PPCPs may be used to provide “tracers” or PPCP sources in receiving waters. PPCPs found in high levels, or those that exhibit stability, are commonly used for this purpose. AXYS developed and validated EPA Method 1698 and EPA Method 1694 for the U.S. EPA Office of Water.
Metro Vancouver Multi-Year Project to Study POPS and CECs loading in WWTP and diffusion in the Receiving Environment
AXYS has provided Alkylphenol, Sterols and Hormones, Dioxins, PCB congeners, PAHs, Alkylated PAHs, Pyrethroids, and Organochlorine Pesticides analysis for the characterization of WWTP effluent, storm water/ CSO effluent, and its subsequent diffusion to receiving waters and receiving water sediments. Resident fish are also measured on a scheduled basis.
Analyzing Hydrocarbons in Tissues and SPMDs
Analysis of PAH and alkylated PAH in amphibian tissue and in pond water by SPMD sampling. Speciated naphthenic acid determination in the amphibian tissues.
Driving Deeper Understanding with Alkylated PAHs
Determination of low concentrations and patterns of PAH/alkylayed PAH in muscle tissue of various species of fish from Northern Alberta waters.
Supporting Great Lakes AOC Investigations
AXYS provided analysis for the Great Lakes Area of Concern Investigation, including ambient water, high-volume sampling, precipitation, fish and sediment samples. Axys tested for PAHs, Dioxins, PCBs, OC pesticides including chlorobenzenes, current use pesticides (OC, ON, OP, triazine, pyrethroids), perfluorinated compounds, PBDPE, and PPCPs.
Studying Hydrocarbons with SPMDs
Athabasca River Assessment. Dialysis and PAH and alkylated PAH analysis of 16 SPMDs.
AXYS Innovates to Support Oil Sands Monitoring
Alberta Environment needed to establish baseline conditions for water in Northern Alberta in pristine and oil sands producing areas. AXYS analyzed 240 SPMD samples for PAH and alkylated PAH analysis and 240 POCIS samples for Naphthenic Acids. This study produced data suitable for temporal and geographic tracking and fingerprinting of the PAH, alkylated PAH and naphthenic acids in environmental samples.