ALS ensures chain of custody for your samples via a secure digital system with systematic checks and a full audit trail. Our sample submittal and tracking processes ensure sample identification is verified and entered into our laboratory information management system (LIMS). Our online client portal, Webtrieve™, allows you to see when your samples have been logged into our system, what methods have been assigned, progression through the lab, and gives real-time access to results as samples progress through the laboratory.
Each sample received by ALS is digitally logged into our laboratory information management system (LIMS), confirmed against the sample submittal form, and the received weight captured as an important primary piece of information. Samples can be submitted with or without barcodes, however samples received without will have barcodes generated at a minor cost. Barcodes are used to track samples throughout the laboratory as samples are scanned at each process to ensure traceability at every point.
Samples submitted as fully prepared pulp materials are tested to ensure they meet fineness requirements for optimal analysis conditions. A minimum of one out of every 50 samples is selected for QC verification to a specification of 85% passing a 75 micron screen. Pulp reference materials submitted with regular samples are not checked for fineness to protect their integrity.
After sample analysis, samples are retained at ALS free of charge for a limited time. After the free storage period has lapsed, sample can be returned, retained in paid storage, or disposed of by ALS as requested. The cost of disposal depends on many factors such as sample type and jurisdiction. Our client services team can provide a quotation for disposal prior to any actions being taken.
Some types of samples imported to certain regions (particularly Australia) require heat treatment and specific documentation. ALS is up to date with all importation requirements and permitting and will arrange for samples to clear customs and quarantine. Please contact ALS when sending samples between regions to receive the most current information and advice.
A hazardous sample is defined as one that contains asbestos minerals, naturally occurring radioactive material (NORM), and/or high sulphide content. Please notify the receiving laboratory when submitting any of these sample types or others that could pose a health or safety risk to ensure the safety of staff handling them.
Pulverising a sample that is high in sulphides can accelerate the oxidation reaction of sulphides with air due to the higher surface area of the mineral available to react. This can result in high heat generation, and in extreme cases spontaneous combustion. It is therefore critical that the lab is notified when high sulphide samples are submitted for preparation so that precautionary measure can be taken.
No, samples can be submitted without a quotation. However, it is recommended to talk with our client services team as they can guide you through submittal and logistics.
Samples can be submitted to any ALS Geochemistry location regardless of whether the location performs a selected procedure. In any case, samples will either be processed locally or sent to a location that can perform the request. ALS can also provide recommendations for transporting samples if you prefer to send samples directly to a chosen location rather than drop-off. If you have any questions, please contact your local client services team.
Each batch of samples submitted requires a sample submission form or instructions listing the samples in the batch along with their requested preparation and geochemical methods. If there are specialised requests information can be detailed in the instructions or an additional attachment. A digital and paper version of the documentation accompanying the samples is ideal. Providing a full sample list in a digital format such as Excel ensures that sample identifications can be electronically verified against those submitted. If samples are being sent between countries additional paperwork may be needed. Please contact ALS for requirements pertaining to international sample submission.