Abu Dhabi, March 28, 2021: The Central Testing Laboratory of the Abu Dhabi Quality and Conformity Council (QCC) conducted 1,630 examinations to check radioactivity contamination across food, water and industrial as well as environmental product samples in Abu Dhabi in 2020.
The laboratory over the past five years have done a total of 9,930 examinations , fulfilling its role as a gatekeeper of quality by ensuring all regulatory norms are strictly followed.
“The time taken for the tests depends on the product category as well as the nature of the required analyses, and it can be between 7 days for a routine check, and another five days for advance assessment like in the case of industrial and environmental products. We continuously coordinate with academic and scientific bodies to update and develop examination mechanisms,” Eng. Al Maeeni said.
The Central Testing Laboratory maintains ongoing communication and partnership with global bodies such as the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the American Society of Radiochemistry. The laboratory contributes to the sustainable development of Abu Dhabi within the framework of its mandate and the role of QCC, he said.
The laboratory is accredited by the British body, UKAS. It is also accredited by the Emirates National Accreditation System (ENAS) with ISO certification. The lab also provides comparative examination services to similar laboratories through global competency programmes such as the IAEA programme.
Other programmes with which the laboratory is associated are the MAPEP program of the US Department of Energy, the NPL program of the National Physical Laboratory of the UK, and the ERA program mainly for proficiency assays for water samples.
Eng. Al Maeeni said the laboratory is managed by a National workforce in line with its policy to develop the capabilities of the UAE Nationals in both administrative and scientific fields. This is done through the introduction and development of new methods of analyses and specialized courses inside and outside the country thus ensuring permanent readiness of the laboratory in line with QCC’s assigned role in the radiation emergency plan of Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant.
“The laboratory also conducts training programs for government agencies like the Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation (FANR), Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant as well as to students of the University of Sharjah and to people working in the armed forces associated with chemical laboratories," Eng. Al Maeeni said.
There is also close cooperation with the Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority to ensure the safety and quality of food in relation to radioactive contamination, development of methods of analyses and also in providing expert advice on the effects of radiation in food and agriculture sectors.
The laboratory is also in close cooperation with the National Emergency, Crisis and Disaster Management Authority within the framework of the radiological emergency plan of the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant. It also cooperates with the Environment Agency-Abu Dhabi and the Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority.