Quality Assurance Practices For the Chemical and Biological Analyses of Water and Fluvial Sediments

U.S. Geological Survey, Techniques of Water-Resources Investigations, Book 5, Chapter A6

By Linda C. Friedman and David E. Erdmann

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This manual is one of a series of manuals on techniques used by the U.S. Geological Survey for planning and conducting water-resources investigations. The material is arranged under major subject headings called books and is further subdivided into sections and chapters. Book 5 is on laboratory analyses; section A is on water. The unit of publication, the chapter, is limited to a narrow field of subject matter. "Quality Assurance Practices for the Chemical and Biological Analyses of Water and Fluvial Sediments" is the sixth chapter under Section A of Book 5. The chapter number includes the letter of the section.

This chapter was prepared with the assistance of many Geological Survey chemists and hydrologists as a means of documenting and making available the practices used by the Geological Survey to assure the quality of water-quality data produced by the collection and analysis of water, fluvial sediments, and aquatic organisms. Documentation of practices associated with certain specific instruments, such as inductively-coupled plasma spectrometers, mass spectrometers, and alpha counters is not yet complete. It is intended that, when completed, they and other practices will be incorporated in a supplement to or in a new addition of this chapter.

The editors appreciate receiving permission from the American Society for Testing and Materials to reprint from the "Annual Book of ASTM Standards, Part 41," table 1 "Critical Values for T," table 5 "Significance levels for the square-root of b1" and table 6 "Significance Levels for b2," from Method E-178; permission from the Association of Official Analytical Chemists for permission to reprint table 7 "Approximate five percent two-tail limits for ranking scores" from W. J. Youden's "Statistical Techniques for Collaborative Tests" in the "Statistical Manual of the AOAC"; permission from George W. Snedecor, William G. Cochran, and the Iowa State University Press for permission to reprint parts of the table "5 percent and 1 percent points for the distribution for F" in the sixth edition of "Statistical Methods"; permission from Eugene L. Grant, Richard S. Leavenworth, and McGraw-Hill Book Co. to reprint table B, "Factors for estimating o' from R or o," table C, "Factors for determining from R the 3-sigma control limits for X and R charts," and table D, "Factor for determining from o the 3-sigma control limits for X and o charts" from the fourth edition of "Statistical Quality Control"; and permission from Wilfred J. Dixon, Frank J. Massey, Jr., and McGraw-Hill Book Co. for permission to reprint tables A-8e, "Criteria for testing for extreme mean," and table A-18a, "Percentiles of the distribuion of q=w/s" from the third edition of "Introduction to Statistical Analysis."

The editors are also grateful to the Literary Executor of the late Sir Ronald A. Fisher, F. R. S., to Dr. Frank Yates, F. R. S., and to Longman Group Ltd., London, for permission to reprint table III "Distribution of t" from their book "Statistical Tables for Biological, Agricultural and Medical Research," (sixth edition, 1974).

Reference to trade names, commercial products, manufacturers, and distributors in this manual does not constitute endorsement by the Geological Survey nor recommendation for use.

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