Years ago, there were little tags on electrical cords and stickers on appliances that read “UL” in a circle.
If you look, you probably can find any number of those stickers around your home. The reason is “UL”
stands for Underwriter’s Laboratories, one of the nation’s oldest, largest, and most well respected
testing labs for electronics. Their testing makes sure what you buy is safe, durable, and will most likely
not cause fires or other problems.
There are many types of science labs around, some for electrical work, some for chemical testing, those
that deal with water, soil, and environmental testing. Others handle medical and other types of
materials that affect food, medicine, and compounds humans, pets, livestock, and food crops are
exposed to, or need information on, such as DNA, paternity tests, and drug screenings. Scientific testing
labs keep us healthy and our products safe.
With the growth and advent of new agricultural crops in many states that requires stringent testing of
chemical levels, good, reputable science labs are more in demand than ever before. You need a
certified lab with well-trained technicians dealing with the biology, chemistry, and physics that make up
the body of knowledge required to properly test, assay, and certify materials.
Science lab locations have been around for a long time in the U.S.. We used to call them pharmacies
and assay offices. While taking on a different face, old time compounding druggists were truly running a
science lab, as were those who assayed gold, silver, and copper ore from the western mountains. Many
a life and many a fortune weighed on the ability of those old time health and mineral science lab
Today science labs are sleek, modern, ultra clean, and heavily monitored for standards, weights, and
legal compliance. When human health is involved, only the highest quality is acceptable. If you need
work done to identify or certify materials or compounds, or to learn what might be contaminating
something, you need look no further than a quality science lab. Efficient and responsible, these labs will
economically test your materials and provide written documentation stating their findings. They will
also keep your data secure and private. Many times intellectual property assignment accompanies a
specimen or material for testing, and science labs licensed by their state and the federal government
take that assignment very seriously. It is a legally binding agreement that the company providing the
sample owns the material and any information learned about it in the process of testing is theirs
exclusively. Often this knowledge is of considerable financial concern for the company as it helps
establish a valuation on their materials, or provides information for legal proceedings.
When locating a lab to do work for you, make sure they are licensed and insured, as well as affiliated
with the state and national organizations that monitor, advise, and oversee their particular specialty.
Find out if they are up to date on new findings, differences, or issues in the kind of materials you need
tested. A classic example of an unmonitored material was Chinese drywall a few years back full of toxic
mold. A qualified lab would have found, and reported to an appropriate agency, the issue at hand and
could have hopefully curtailed the importation of dangerous materials.
Do your homework and locate a science lab you can trust results from. It will pay off in the long run.