RSSL opens new metals lab

And signs a laboratory partnership agreement with Agilent

The ICP-MS (inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer) Agilent 7700 is located in the news RSSL metals lab

Reading Scientific Services Ltd (RSSL) has opened a new metals laboratory in the UK, and has signed a laboratory partnership agreement with Agilent.

RSSL says the new laboratory is bigger and better equipped, allowing the firm to provide a better service in routine metals testing for the pharmaceutical industry. Metals are of concern due to their presence in mined excipients (titanium dioxide), biological tissues, their use as catalysts, and their presence in production equipment (reactors, pipes, etc).

Strict rules apply over legal limits for metal contamination in pharmaceuticals, and the challenge is to find the best, most accurate, reliable and cost-effective methods of analysis.

RSSL's investment is geared up to the pending implementation of Chapter <232> and Chapter <233> of the USP, and the existing European Pharmacopoeia Chapters 2.4.20 and 5.20, which deal with the analysis of heavy metals by modern spectroscopic methods.

The company has therefore added new equipment to enhance its current capabilities, and to address upcoming commercial challenges.

The new equipment includes ICP-MS (inductively coupled plasma mass-spectrometry), ICP-OES (inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectroscopy), AAS (atomic absorption spectrometry), and MP-AES (microwave plasma-atomic emission spectrometry). These four complementary technologies give RSSL options to quantify trace metal contamination in all kinds of matrices, with accuracy and efficiency not possible by wet-chemistry methods.

RSSL says the pending changes to the USP for heavy metals testing mean that spectroscopic methods will replace wet-chemistry methods in the vast majority of cases.

As Agilent's sole partner laboratory in the UK for atomic spectroscopy, RSSL will also be established as the leading site for developing new techniques and applications for Agilent's technologies, benefiting from its support and expertise, and offering a demonstration site for Agilent equipment.

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Reading Scientific Services Ltd (more information, website)