New Accredited Analysis of Marine Sediments from RPS

New Accredited Analysis of Marine Sediments from RPS

With the ongoing investment in the exploration of natural resources and the harnessing of energy from wind and tidal power, there is an increasing focus on the environmental impacts this can have on the marine habitat.

In order to ensure environmental compliance and licensing requirements RPS is able to offer the analysis of sediments to meet the Marine Monitoring Organisation’s (MMO) requirements of England and Wales. RPS also meets the analytical requirements of the Marine Scotland Act, and the equivalent Environment Agency requirements of both Northern and Southern Ireland.

RPS routinely supports environmental pre- and post- operational surveys, dredging operations and planning surveys such as the redevelopment of Belfast Harbour (Northern Ireland) and the expansion of Dublin Harbour (Ireland) and has also been involved in marine monitoring programmes such as the marine environmental impact assessment of the wreck of RFA Darkdale, an oil tanker that was torpedoed in WWII in St. James Bay, St Helena, in the South Atlantic – which contract was carried out on behalf of the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD).

The laboratories’ expertise is an important factor in ensuring that the quality of results can be relied upon for regulatory outputs. Our staff have vast experience of working within the marine industry in both government and commercial laboratories and can guarantee the use of the most appropriate methods and techniques to achieve high quality results in realistic timescales.

RPS participates in the Quasimeme marine performance testing scheme in line with OSPAR guidelines, and holds UKAS accreditation for the analysis of marine sediments: all of which is a requirement for submission of marine licencing applications.

The reports provided by RPS include as standard all the required Certified Reference Material (CRM) and In House Reference Material (IHRM) data for licence submission.

Our analytical services include:

Total metal digest with hydrofluoric acid

Available metal digest 50% nitric acid

Partial metal digest with aqua regia

ICP-MS and CVAFS analysis to meet the requirements for the characterisation of dredge material for disposal at sea (MMO, Marine Scotland, NIEA and Marine Institute)

Organotin compounds in sediments (TBT, DBT, MBT etc.)

Loss on ignition, dry matter, solids, carbonate content and TOC

Sediment density

Total Hydrocarbon content (TPH and speciated aliphatics)

Oil and Grease

Oil in Water (GC-FID or FTIR)

BTEX, VOCs, petrol range organics

PAHs EPA16 and alkylated 2-6 ring PAHs

PCBs including EN25, WHO12, IC7 and CEFAS 25 congeners


Alkylphenols, Alkylphenol ethoxylates

Organochlorine Pesticides

Particle size analysis via wet and dry sieving (BS1377 & NMBAQC methods) and laser diffraction