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The Joint Research Centre (JRC) is the European Commission's science and knowledge service which employs scientists to carry out research in order to provide independent scientific advice and support to EU policy.
IMEP-24 Heavy metals in toys
IMEP-24 was an interlaboratory comparison for the determination of the eight heavy metals whose safety limits are set out by the EU Toy Safety Directive (88/378/EEC) and specified in the harmonised European Standard EN71-3:1994. The concerned elements were lead, arsenic, antimony, barium, selenium, mercury, chromium and cadmium. The sample matrix was a mild steel plate coated with alkyd resin paint. The laboratories were asked to apply the sample preparation method described in EN71-3:1994, but otherwise to follow their routine procedure.
Characteristic for this study was its high metrological standard. This may be of particular interest to those who were involved in analysis of trace elements in toys. The measurement results were evaluated against traceable reference values where possible, and uncertainty statements when provided by participants were included in the evaluation. Participating in IMEP-24 also helped laboratories to benchmark their performance with peers throughout Europe.
Baer, I., van de Kreeke, J., Linsinger, T.P.J., Robouch, P., Cordeiro Raposo, F., de la Calle, B.: "IMEP-24 analysis of eight trace elements in toys", Trends in Analytical Chemistry, vol 30, No. 2 (2011): pages 313-323