During my seminars on arson and legal sampling over the years, one fundamental question is asked a lot regarding the collection of samples for ignitable liquid residue (ILR) analysis for a potential arson investigation. That question is, “Do my samples really need ice for storage and transport to the laboratory?”
I was attending and presenting at the 2017 International Association Arson Investigations (IAAI) Conference in Las Vegas in April. My four hour presentation covered many aspects of legal sampling and chain of custody as well as providing a fundamental description of laboratory analysis of ignitable liquid residues (ILRs).
You may have heard about an analytical technique called 2DGC or Two-Dimensional Gas Chromatography. Or perhaps you have not. I have been talking about for years to anyone who would listen. Put simply, this technique is an advanced analytical technique that allows us to measure more within our samples, even in very complex samples. It is not a regulatory method, and it’s not for routine work, but here is why you should be interested in it.
Sampling can easily run up the costs of an investigation. As expert chemists, it’s our responsibility to balance cost with collecting the proper number of samples for our clients. With appropriate planning, we are able to collect the optimal samples for the best data at a lower cost. Here’s how…