Protocols 101: Certificate of Analysis
Understanding your Certificate of Analysis (COA)
Since it’s extremely important to recognize that the contents of the Certificate of Analysis and sidewall label provided with each EPA protocol gas cylinder directly impact compliance, we have outlined below all the necessary components that you should demand to be included with your COA.
The Certificate of Analysis that accompanies any Airgas EPA protocol gas is frequently reviewed by local, state and EPA air quality enforcement personnel to ensure it meets current and mandatory requirements. Additionally, the Airgas SRVS app is designed to help eliminate human error when reporting your cylinder data. Our technology continues to advance to make certificate data management more automated and error-free, and ultimately easier for your team.
What information should be included in your Certificate of Analysis (COA)?
A quick check of your COA can save you fines and aggravation. The following are the minimum requirements for information on a COA for an EPA protocol gas.
- Cylinder identification number (e.g. stamped cylinder number)
- The certified concentrations for the assayed components of the EPA protocol gas, with values provided to at least three significant figures, and the balance gas
- The calculated estimate of 95% uncertainty for each named component
- Cylinder pressure at certification and statement that the EPA protocol gas cannot be used below 100 psig (0.7 megapascals)
- Dates of the assays and certification. The certification date is the date of the last assay
- Certification expiration date
- Information about each reference standard used in the assay:
- For an NTRM, RGM or PRM: standard type, cylinder number, certified concentration, expanded uncertainty, certification expiration date
- For a GMIS: cylinder number, certified concentration, expanded uncertainty, expiration date – plus information (7.a.) about the reference material used in certifying the GMIS
- Statement that the assay/certification was performed according to EPA protocol document EPA 600/R-12/531–plus the Procedure used: G1 or G2
- The analytical method(s) used in the assays and date of the most recent multipoint calibration for each instrument used in the assays
- Identification of the specialty gas producer: Company, laboratory name, city and state, PGVP vendor ID
- Chronological record of all certifications for the standard
As required by EPA Traceability Protocol Assay and Certification of Gaseous Calibration Standards (EPA 600/R-12/531 May 2012) documentation.
In some cases, state and local air agencies can ask for more information on a Certificate of Analysis.