Analysis of extractables and leachables is important for chemicals and materials in their applications. Extractables are any compounds from materials or devices that can be forced to migrate under laboratory conditions. Leachables are any extractable compounds that have migrated into the final product under normal conditions.
Knowledge of potential extractables from raw materials, products and processes can be essential to improving quality, assessing health risks and problem solving.
Extractables analysis uses aggressive testing conditions such as solvents, temperature and exposure time to force any potential extractables to migrate. The exact nature of the extractable test design will depend on the material / product being tested and its intended use with the idea being to create exaggerated conditions to generate more extractable than would be seen under normal conditions without going so far as to cause breakdown of the material.
Once the extraction has been performed the extract can then be analysed using a variety of techniques to characterise the extractables present looking for any volatile, semi-volatile or non-volatile organic compounds and elemental analysis for inorganic compounds such as metals.
LPD Lab Services have a wide range of equipment and techniques that can be employed to analyse any extractables obtained from a sample. The exact nature of the type of testing needed to characterise any extractables will be largely dependent on the sample being submitted for testing but the lab would endeavor to identify as many of the extractables as possible. Typical tests used would include GC-MS for semi-volatiles, Headspace GC-MS for volatiles, LC-MS and FTIR for non-volatiles and ICP-MS, AAS or IC for metals and inorganics