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Base parameters and indicators in waters
Water analysis service providers measure physico-chemical parameters in samples prepared by AGLAE. These analyses are used to monitor water intended for human consumption, surface water, sea water and swimming pool water, and to monitor discharges and the operation of wastewater treatment plants.
⇒ AGLAE provides 24 programmes in this category of proficiency tests Base parameters and indicators in waters.
AGLAE assesses the analytical performance of participants, enabling them to improve the quality of their measurements in water.
Why participate in the "Base parameters and indicators in waters" proficiency tests?
They are carried out as part of self-monitoring or regulatory controls. They enable part of the requirements to be covered:
- accreditation scopes related to physico-chemical analyses in waters (see Accreditation No. 1-1664)
- approvals issued by Ministries of Health to carry out sampling and analysis for water quality control purposes
- approvals issued by Ministries for the Environment to carry out analyses in the field of water and aquatic environments
What types of waters does AGLAE provide in these proficiency tests?
- drinking water: tap water, spring water, natural mineral waters, highly mineralised mineral waters and sparkling waters
- clear freshwater, surface water
- swimming pool water
- wastewater entering or leaving urban wastewater treatment plants
- saline and brackish water
What analyses do the laboratories carry out?
Depending on the type of water, laboratories measure in particular :
- 'basic' physico-chemical parameters (pH, sulphate, nitrate, phosphate, magnesium, sodium, etc.)
- indicators such as phosphorus, nitrogen, 5-day Biological Oxygen Demand (BOD5), Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD)
- organoleptic parameters odour and flavour
- chlorophyll a and the pheopigment index
- parameters for sanitary control and monitoring of swimming pool water implemented by Health Agencies: free and total chlorine, isocyanuric acid, as well as disinfection by-products such as bromates, chlorates, etc.
Added value of AGLAE "Base parameters and indicators in waters" proficiency tests
- The water used is representative of that encountered by laboratories in their routine analyses: seawater is sampled from the North Sea and wastewater comes from one wastewater treatment plant.
- Depending on the methods used to analyse these parameters, differences in results are observed. AGLAE studies them and presents them in the test reports. These observations help laboratories to better interpret their analysis results: AGLAE has published two studies on the measurement of COD and ST-COD based on test observations.
- AGLAE proficiency tests are used not only to assess laboratory performance, but also to check their estimated measurement uncertainties and estimate the repeatability and reproducibility of their measurements.
- AGLAE provides personalised reports to laboratories, enabling them to focus on possible improvements to their analyses.