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A COMPLETE SERVICE FOR ENVIRONMENTAL SAFETY

The Hera Group laboratory system

The service offered by Hera laboratories goes beyond merely conducting analyses. The technicians who oversee the various spheres of activity, offer genuine technical, scientific and regulatory support to customers and a partnership aimed at solving the most complex requirements along the entire decision-making chain: they offer specialist assistance for the management of sampling activities, the interpretation of analytical data and, as a result, the definition of interventions in relation with existing standards, bibliographic information or specifications.

The range mainly extends to the following areas of activity:

Sampling and withdrawal

Sampling is conducted on all environmental matrices, liquid, solid and gaseous using specific methods and in compliance with specific rules.

Highly specialist analyses conducted on environmental matrices

These analyses mainly involve the following areas:

  • asbestos and mineral wools, through scanning electron microscopy;
  • high-resolution mass spectrometry [HRGC/HRMS] of very toxic micro-pollutants (chlorinated dioxins and furans [PCDD/PCDF], PCB, Dioxin – like and PBDE);
  • checking for the presence of metals through ICP/ AES,ICP MS techniques, electronic fluorescence.

Waste analysis and classification

This activity involves the quantification of substances present to determine toxicity and level of danger. It is possible, in this way, to reach a precise characterisation and classification of waste in order to determine the correct disposal or environmental recovery methods.

Analysis of drinking water, groundwater and waste water

In order to check the requirements of water destined for human consumption and waste water returned to the environment, the Laboratory specialises in the following kinds of analysis:

  • chemical;
  • physical;
  • microbiological;
  • toxicological;
  • biological;
  • radiochemical.

Chemical and microbiological analyses of compost, biological sludge and composting materials

The following are in this category:

  • analysis of biological sludge for recovery in agriculture;
  • analysis of activated sludge with stringy bacterial speciation
  • analysis of toxicity;
  • respirometric indexes and characterisation of compost quality;
  • analysis of earth  for the purpose of reclamation and emission repercussions on the soil.

Control of emissions into the atmosphere (directed and diffused)

As far as emissions control is concerned, the Hera laboratories are capable of:

  • sampling and analysing emissions discharged by industrial activities, waste-to-energy plants, power plants and thermal power stations to check compliance with regulations;
  • ambient air and/or emissions monitoring campaigns in industrial plants to check compliance with regulations;
  • evaluation of the impact, checks on the operation and efficiency of emission pollutant abatement systems, in accordance with standard UNI EN14181;
  • instrument measurement of olfactory problems and sampling with canisters.

Odours

In partnership with other highly specialised partners, our Laboratory offers odour analysis and research services for air samples taken in the most diverse environmental conditions. Olfactometric analysis is vital for understanding the actual odour concentrations and it provides a complete picture of any osmogenic impact, in order to provide useful support in identifying problems related to odours and the most appropriate measures to take in order to lessen them.

Safety and hygiene in the workplace

Measurements are taken and assessments made on the exposure of workers to airborne chemical agents, to asbestos and to organic and inorganic substances.

The concentration of biological agents in the air and on surfaces is also monitored, which is useful in the evaluation of biological risk.

Industrial hygiene

The Hera laboratory also offers consulting services for the complex subject of industrial hygiene, supporting the definition of environmental investigation and personal protocols, aimed at ensuring adequate monitoring of the exposure conditions of operators and the population.

Monitoring in hospital facilities for the production of water for hemodialysis

The checks involve microbiological and chemical tests and tests for bacterial lipopolysaccharides in dialysis solutions and water.

Asbestos

The Hera Laboratories carry out both qualitative and quantitative tests to determine fibres dispersed in the air and check the presence of asbestos in items and in various environmental matrices through modern techniques using instruments such as scanning electron microscopes (SEM). This technique enables the definite attribution of asbestos fibres as opposed to other non-fibrous serpentine groups and other types of fibres, thanks to the microanalysis system.

Hera Laboratories' experience of asbestos can be summed up in:

  • 15 years of activity
  • 400 samples per year analysed
  • participation in the Ministry of Health qualification programme
  • accreditation of the water analysis method
  • participation in working groups for the preparation of official analysis methods

Studies in progress into the toxicological evaluation of the presence of asbestos fibres in drinking water have led the Hera Laboratories to become a benchmark structure for numerous integrated water service providers in Italy.

Radioactivity

The Hera Laboratories perform radioactivity assessments in water intended for human consumption, in accordance with the Italian Legislative Decree 28/2016, via the liquid scintillography technique.

We perform monitoring of the following parameters:

  • Screening and Total Alpha and Beta Radioactivity
  • Tritium
  • Radon
  • Indicative Dose calculation.

Our laboratory meets the suitability criteria defined by the Italian Ministry of Health as we operate in accordance with the ISO IEC 17025 standard, applying protocols issued by international standardization bodies.

 


Page updated 8 August 2019

 
 
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