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Topic: Purchasing standards  (Read 229 times)

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Offline BoringPerson

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Purchasing standards
« on: February 05, 2020, 11:09:41 PM »
How tight on funds are labs usually? What is considered affordable when purchasing standards in your lab? I am a first year graduate student and have been interested in quantitative analysis. My lab struggles to be able to afford standards that are less than $100.

Offline Corribus

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Re: Purchasing standards
« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2020, 09:22:07 AM »
It all depends on what kind of standards and what you will be using them for. In basic (university) labs, maybe you can get away with making your own.  In a government/regulatory lab, you must buy expensive certified standards, because there's a legal requirement to show traceability. Thankfully government labs usually have the budget for that.

Just remind your boss that the quality and trustability of results only go as far as how good your standards are. If you cut corners there, and quantitation is very important, it may bite you in the ass later on.
What men are poets who can speak of Jupiter if he were like a man, but if he is an immense spinning sphere of methane and ammonia must be silent?  - Richard P. Feynman

Offline pcm81

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Re: Purchasing standards
« Reply #2 on: February 06, 2020, 10:18:06 PM »
It all depends on what kind of standards and what you will be using them for. In basic (university) labs, maybe you can get away with making your own.  In a government/regulatory lab, you must buy expensive certified standards, because there's a legal requirement to show traceability. Thankfully government labs usually have the budget for that.

Just remind your boss that the quality and trustability of results only go as far as how good your standards are. If you cut corners there, and quantitation is very important, it may bite you in the ass later on.

This is 100% correct, however it does not only apply to government or regulatory labs. Any ISO or otherwise certified lab must maintain the level of traceability as required by certification. These requirements usually go beyond having correct standards, the storage and use of the standard is part of the ISO certification. You can buy the most expansive NaOH standard out there, but if you keep it in an open container you have basically threw your money away. Different standards will have different shelf lives and may require special storage conditions to maintain that shelf life... You got to dot all the "i's" and cross all the "t's" if you are working in a certified lab.

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