Environmental and Chemical Laboratory Services (ECLS) provides full-service environmental testing capabilities. It maintains a broad scope of analytical expertise covering inorganic, organic, and radiological testing activities. It also maintains a chemical terrorism response program. This broad base of technical expertise enables the laboratory to perform a wide variety of routine environmental tests. The laboratory can also perform various tests in response to environmental health emergencies that might be encountered during a chemical terrorism event.
ECLS is designated as the "Principal State Laboratory" for the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP), allowing it to implement state regulations, as well as enforce federal Safe Drinking Water and Water Pollution Control Act standards and discharge permits. The ECLS mission is to provide environmental testing to support to various regulatory programs for NJDEP and other state, regional, and local agencies.
ECLS staff actively participates with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Laboratory Response Network (LRN); Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Food Emergency Response Network (FERN); US EPA Environmental Laboratory Response Network (ELRN); and the New Jersey Water Monitoring Council.
Following is a brief presentation of various programs within ECLS:
Organic Testing Laboratory
This laboratory program is subdivided into three sections: Gas Chromatography/Mass Spectrometry (GC/MS); Gas Chromatography (GC) and High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC); and Sample Preparation. The GC/MS testing section analyzes environmental and other samples for volatile and semi-volatile toxic organic contaminants. The GC and HPLC laboratory sections analyze environmental and other samples for toxic organic contaminants. The Sample Preparation section performs various sample preparation, extraction and clean-up protocols previous to GC/MS, GC, or HPLC analyses.
Inorganic Test Laboratory
This laboratory program is subdivided into two principal testing areas: General Analytical Chemistry Testing and Trace Metals Testing. General Analytical Chemistry performs the traditional "wet" chemical analyses using such techniques such as gravimetry, titrimetry, colorimetry, continuous flow analysis, UV/VIS spectrophotometry, and ion chromatography.
The Trace Metal Testing Laboratory analyzes aqueous and several non-aqueous sample matrices for the presence of trace metals by cold vapor and graphite furnace atomic absorption spectroscopy, and inductively coupled plasma emission spectroscopy (ICP). In addition, this laboratory utilizes ICP-mass spectroscopy and fluorescence spectroscopy for low level metal analysis.
Radioanalytical Services Laboratory
This laboratory is responsible for maintaining radiological testing capabilities for the analysis of drinking water in support of the federal Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) and the New Jersey State 48-hour, gross alpha testing requirement (NJAC 7:18). The laboratory also performs radiological analysis of soil, vegetation, and air filter samples. It also serves as a testing resource in response to incidents involving the accidental or intentional release of radioactivity into the environment.
This laboratory program has three sections: Chemical Terrorism, Biomonitoring and Adulterated Food Testing. These laboratories employ a variety of analytical techniques including GC/MS, LC-MS/MS, LC/MSD Trap, and spectrophotometric methods for the analysis of clinical specimens, as well as adulterated food samples. Solid-phase extraction (SPE), solid-phase micro-extraction (SPME), and headspace sampling are clinical sample-preparation techniques that are performed in this laboratory.
Chemical Terrorism awareness poster [pdf 19mb]
Chemical Terrorism packaging and shipping training video
The IT Group is responsible for the support of the Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS), as well as internal and client information processing. Client data deliverables are managed by the reporting, billing and data feed teams. Each team works within a scheduled production environment to insure the best quality product for our customers. The report team creates and sends reports on a daily schedule. Electronic data feeds are available on demand and a scheduled basis after a data feed agreement is in place between ECLS and customer. Information delivery is available by mail, email or shared data store depending on customer needs.