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Species-specific isotope dilution analysis has been adopted as an official method under US legislation


The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA or Agency) announced the availability of  the  "Final Update IV'' to the Third Edition of the manual, "Test Methods for Evaluating Solid Waste, Physical/Chemical Methods,'' EPA publication SW-846. Final Update IV contains new and revised analytical methods that may be used in monitoring or complying with the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act  (RCRA) hazardous waste regulations. Method 6800 (Elemental and Speciated Isotope Dilution Mass Spectrometry) is now part of SW-846.

According to Matt Pamaku, CEO of Applied Isotope Technologies, this event will profoundly influence a number of academic, regulatory and industrial testing and decision-making processes.

Method 6800 describes both "Calibration-less" Isotope Dilution Mass Spectrometry (IDMS) and Species-specific Isotope Dilution Mass Spectrometry (SIDMS) protocols.  The updated Method 6800 has now been expanded to include biological and industrial samples, as well as environmental samples (soil, sludge and water). The method allows generating accurate and precise results for trace element species even when species transformations during analysis cannot be avoided. It is the beauty of the method that defensible results can be obtained without a lengthy calibration procedure.

One of the few problems of this method is the limited commercial availability of species-specific isotope standards. Specialized companies have now addressed this problem providing standards for Chromium, Mercury and Tin speciation analysis.

Related Information

Federal Register, January 3, 2008: Waste Management System; Testing and Monitoring Activities; Notice of Availability of Final Update IV of SW-846, 486–489 [E7–25575]

Related EVISA Resources

Link Database: US EPA Method 6800
Glossary: Species-specific isotope dilution analysis
Company Database: Applied Isotope Technologies
Company Database: ISC Science
Materials Database: ESIS™ Monomethyl mercury (isotopically labeled)
Materials Database: ESIS™ Hexavalent chromium (isotopically labeled)
Materials Database: 119Sn-enriched Butyltin mix
Brief Summary: ICP-MS: A versatile detection system for speciation analysis

 Related News

EarthTimes, February 20, 2008: Newly Published EPA RCRA Method 6800 Supports AIT Technology

EVISA News, November 8, 2006: Double spiking species-specific isotope dilution result calculations simplified

EVISA News, March 24, 2006: PLSG Invests $100,000 in Applied Isotope Technologies, Inc., for Development of New Technologies for Environmental and Biological Analyses

last time updated: June 25, 2020

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