Speciality gas specialists achieve ISO 17034 accreditation
Dec 10 2020
EffecTech has been granted accreditation to ISO 17034 as a producer of reference materials by the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS). This accreditation will help customers who are increasingly required to comply with this standard by their local accreditation bodies.
Accreditation to ISO 17025 has been held by EffecTech for over 20 years; it has been the industry standard for calibration gases for decades. So why the move to ISO 17034?
A specialty gas mixture, used by EffecTech’s customers to provide traceability and accuracy to their gas analysis, can be considered as both a calibration gas and a reference material.
Historically, specialty gas mixtures have been certified following calibration under the scope of ISO 17025 accreditation. These certificates provide customers with detailed information about the accuracy, traceability and uncertainty of the mixture which are required for environmental, fiscal or regulatory obligations. However, ISO 17025 accreditation does not include the requirement to assess and certify the stability or shelf life of the mixture. Such assessments require comprehensive analysis of a mixture’s stability and homogeneity throughout a mixture’s expected usage period.
Due to an increasing demand for calibration gas mixtures containing reactive gases, which have a limited stability period, shelf-life assessments have become much more important. End users need an expiry date to be included on the certificate from the specialty gas provider giving them confidence on the period over which the mixture remains stable.
Accreditation to ISO 17034 solves this problem. The production of a certified reference material (CRM) under ISO 17034 accreditation requires this assessment and the mandatory inclusion of a defendable shelf life on the CRM certificate. The supply of a calibration gas mixture as a certified reference material under this accreditation is considered best practice.
The stability of EffecTech’s reference gas mixtures has always been assessed and included on certificates of calibration for the benefit of the customer. However, the stability statement has always been disclaimed as being outside the scope of accreditation. Under the scope of accreditation for ISO 17034 as a producer of reference materials such shelf lives can now be included on the CRM certificate.
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