Ultratrace analyses In the environmental sector include dioxins, PCB congeners, and PAHs, all at the lowest of detection limits (ultratrace levels), due to the stated very high toxicity of various members of these classes of compounds.  Successful analyses at these low detection limits are demanding, and the technology involved is sophisticated.  When properly implemented, the accuracy and precision of ultratrace analyses using isotope dilution technology is state-of-the-art.

Getting the best accuracy and precision possible is no accident.  Our team understands the technology in depth and can pair that knowledge with your requirement to design the analysis that will best meet your needs and give you the most reliable data available in the industry.


Each analyte class has its own special nuances, but certain enhancements are common to all and include:

  • Using the maximum number of labeled standards that can practically be used, within the commercial availability. This approach ensures the highest possible accuracy and precision.
  • Quality control samples that can specifically address the most critical steps of the analysis that traditional laboratory quality control samples cannot.
  • Ultra-low background levels to ensure contamination-free analyses.
  • Comprehensive data assessment that offers insights into the measurement beyond simply meeting QC criteria.

Our use of the maximum number of labeled standards we can lay our hands on commercially allows us to monitor every step of the analysis (and potentially the sampling) to determine if and where losses occurred.  Our data assessment allows us to understand from these data the best action to take to correct any problems with the sampling or analysis, leading to the delivery of the best possible data faster.


We enjoy challenging projects and samples, and we have worked on many.  If you have a need to measure dioxins and furans in an unusual or difficult sample, we’d love to hear about it.

We enjoy challenging projects and samples, and we have worked on many.  If you have a need to measure dioxins and furans in an unusual or difficult sample, we’d love to hear about it.


  • Bryan Vining: Over 25 years of laboratory, research, and HRGC/HRMS experience
  • Robin Appelle: Over 6 years of extraction/prep and HRGC/HRMS experience
  • Cindy Tondeur James: Over 15 years of HRGC/HRMS, project management, business development, and QA experience


Most dioxin analyses offer a list of 17 dioxins and furans of special interest, deemed toxic by regulatory and international bodies, along with total dioxins and furans.  These results are just the beginning of our analysis and reports.  Our data assessment allows us to understand the origin of many aspects of the data, especially when there’s an irregularity with the data.

We will soon be offering analyses from which we will report all 136 tetra-octa chlorinated dioxins and furans, facilitating the most advanced forensic analyses of sample results possible.  We can even help you understand the possible sources of dioxins and furans found in a sample.

We also offer an assessment of analyte and sample specific measurement uncertainty, unique to the preparation and analysis of each and every sample, based on the performance of the analysis.  We don’t merely handwave at measurement uncertainty, we embrace it.


  • Dioxin/Furans by EPA Method 23, CARB 429 and EPA SW-846 Method 0023A
  • Industry leading experience solving unique regulatory challenges for point source emissions
  • Science-based solutions for unusual and complex projects using isotope dilution


  • Dioxin/Furans by EPA Method TO-9A
  • Our High-Resolution GC/MS instruments are optimized for low detection limits
  • Isotope-dilution analyses to determine amounts of persistent organic pollutants in ambient samples


The analysis of polyaromatic hydrocarbons is a complex field, given the very large number of compounds that fall into this classification.  Our method focuses on the EPA priority list of PAHs, with the list soon to be expanded to cover all those in the EU’s priority list.

These compounds cover a broad range of behavior and chemical properties.  Some evaporate fairly readily, while others almost not at all, for example.   These differences are readily dealt with by using carbon-labeled standards that behave identically chemically.  Methods specifying the use of deuterium labeled standards (and laboratories using them) produce less reliable data than can be obtained with the carbon-labeled standards.

As with all our analyses, we have added extra labeled standards to our PAH analysis that we can use to better understand aspects of sampling and analysis.

Our team have experience dealing with the extraction of PAHs from a wide variety of substances, including oils and carbon black used in food products.  These substances provide extra challenges for the analysis of PAHs, and we delight in making those analyses work for you.

Consulting Services

Our team can help you obtain and understand your data, purpose planned from the beginning.

On the sampling side, if you specify your needed analysis, the upper limit on the results you can tolerate, and the maximum uncertainty you’re willing to tolerate, we can tell you the sample size you need to ensure that you are getting the data quality you need.

We can also assist you in understanding what your data mean, both in terms of data quality and, in some cases, the possible origin of any analytes found.  We have experience in differentiating data originating from combustion sources, ball clay, pentachlorophenol, and numerous other sources.

Many industrial processes create the analytes we measure, and we can help you understand how the analytes came to be in your process.  We have assisted clients with processes in areas as diverse as chemical synthesis and food and feed preparation.  We’ve even handled the analysis of ash originating with biomatter subsequently used for industrial processes.


  • Performance-based criteria approach allows us to focus on meeting analytical sensitivity requirements
  • Comprehensive project planning, ability to plan QAPPs, and satisfy customer project specifications
  • Each project has a dedicated Project Manager as a point of contact
  • Our well defined commitment to data quality is based on the accumulation and application of scientific know-how
  • Consulting services for unusual, complex, or intricate projects



2714 Exchange Dr.

Wilmington, NC 28405