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Asbestos Analytical Methods by PLM/TEM/PCM

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Asbestos Analytical Methods by PLM

Asbestos - PLM

POLARIZED LIGHT MICROSCOPY
Polarized Light Microscopy (PLM) is the utmost accepted method by the EPA and is the most accepted method for initial analysis of bulk building materials for asbestos content. By utilizing the polarized light microscope, analysts test the optical properties of the samples’ fibrous components and provide both the asbestos type and estimated percentages in the sample material.

POLARIZED LIGHT MICROSCOPY POINT COUNT
Polarized Light Microscopy Point Count determines the type of asbestos present and point counts quantify the percentage of asbestos. This method is primarily used to supplement the original PLM calibrated visual estimate.

POLARIZED LIGHT MICROSCOPY GRAVIMETRIC POINT COUNT
Polarized Light Microscopy Gravimetric Point Count utilizes acid and muffle furnace to create residue that allows the lab to get a percentage of asbestos in the residue based on point count method. 

Asbestos Analytical Methods by TEM

Asbestos - TEM

TRANSMISSION ELECTRON MICROSCOPY (TEM) CHATFIELD
Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM) Chatfield cooks the sample to create a residue followed by acid treatment and asbestos results are a derivative of the percentage of asbestos in the residue. This method is approved by the EPA to confirm low-level concentrations of asbestos in non-friable organically bound and some friable bulk building materials.

TRANSMISSION ELECTRON MICROSCOPY AIR AHERA (Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act)
This method is primarily utilized for the final clearance of asbestos remediation area in public schools. It was developed and published by the EPA for clearance of air samples in schools. For the results to be effective, specific sample protocol consistent with AHERA must be followed. You can find these details on the EPA website.

Asbestos Analytical Methods by PCM

PHASE CONTRAST MICROSCOPY (PCM)
Phase Contrast Microscopy (PCM) is performed on air filter samples that have been collected to monitor asbestos conditions prior to, during, and after asbestos remediation. THE PCM analyst counts fibers that are present on the filters in order to give a time-weighted average of the concentration of those fibers for the volume of air sampled. PCM results are fiber concentrations and do not distinguish between asbestos and non-asbestos fibers.

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