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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 219247 Find in a Library
Title: Quality Assurance Testing of an Explosives Trace Analysis Laboratory--Further Improvements
Journal: Journal of Forensic Sciences  Volume:52  Issue:4  Dated:July 2007  Pages:830-837
Author(s): Andrew Crowson Ph.D.; Sean P. Doyle B.Sc.; Clifford C. Todd B.Sc.; Stuart Watson M.Sc.; Nicola Zolnhofer B.Sc.
Date Published: July 2007
Page Count: 8
Sponsoring Agency: Great Britain Home Office
London, SW1H 9AT, England
Type: Program/Project Evaluation
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This paper--which follows a previous paper that described the quality assurance testing regime of the Forensic Explosive Laboratory (FEL) within the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory of the British Government's Ministry of Defence--summarizes subsequent results from approximately 6 years of tests, citing lessons learned and improvements made over this period.
Abstract: Monitoring samples taken from surfaces within the trace laboratories and trace vehicle examination bay have, with few exceptions, revealed only low levels of contamination, predominantly of RDX. Analysis of the control swabs, processed alongside the monitoring swabs, has shown that in this environment the risk of forensic sample contamination, assuming all of the relevant anticontamination procedures have been followed, is so small that it is negligible. The monitoring regime has also been valuable in assessing the process of continuous improvement, allowing sources of contamination transfer into the trace areas to be identified and eliminated. During 1989, the FEL established a weekly quality assurance testing regime in its explosives trace analysis laboratory. The purpose of the regime is to prevent the accumulation of explosives traces within the laboratory at levels that could result in the contamination of samples and controls if other precautions failed. Designated areas within the laboratory are swabbed with cotton wool swabs moistened with ethanol water mixture in equal amounts. The swabs are then extracted, cleaned, and analyzed with gas chromatographs with thermal energy analyzer detectors. 1 table, 10 figures, and 5 references
Main Term(s): Police policies and procedures
Index Term(s): Crime laboratory management; Explosives; Foreign police; Great Britain/United Kingdom; Quality control
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