Implementation of an analytic results intercalibration system.
Lucía Elisa Viñas Diéguez (IEO-Vigo)
The levels of contaminants related to the Prestige incident are going to be supplied by several laboratories/institutions implied in both the Urgent and Special Actions as well as by laboratories from Health a Environment Ministries.
All the results should be comparable, reliable and accurate enough, that is, a good agreement should exist between the determined and true concentrations.
Reliability and comparability of the data are externally evaluated with intercalibration exercises where a laboratory can objectively demonstrate the “rightness” of the results is producing.
An intercalibration exercise generally lies in the determination, by the different participant laboratories, of one or more elements or compounds that are the aim of the analysis in a particular material (matrix) and the comparison of each participant measured concentration with the assigned value (the closest to real concentration).
Samples of the three oceanic matrixes will be selected: water, sediment (mud) and biota (mussel). Hydrocarbons and, in particular cases, heavy metals will be quantified.
Each participant results will be individually communicated, keeping the confidentiality; this will be done assigning a code to each laboratory. They will only be public with the explicit consent of the person in charge. The mentioned code will be used in the statistical treatments and in the presentation of the results as a whole.
In view of the objective of this project, the participants will accept that the results can be communicated to the evaluators of those Special Action projects where hydrocarbons or metals will be determined.