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 require 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 workers.
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 to look no further than a quality science lab. Efficient and responsible, these labs will test your materials and provide written documentation stating their findings. They will 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 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 their 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 an affiliate 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 the 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.