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AGS Laboratories Working Group: July 2018 Meeting Update

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The third AGS Laboratories Working Group meeting of 2018 took place on 12th July 2018 at Geotechnica and the Laboratories Leader, Dimitris Xirouchakis of Structural Soils, has provided an update on the top three current issues the Laboratories Working Group are discussing.

Educating clients about geotechnical testing requirements, primarily, and less so about geoenvironmental testing
This issue impacts on testing quality and consequently, data quality. For instance, it was mentioned in the last meeting that geoenvironmental laboratories used to have many problems with unsuitable sample containers or sampling conditions. The UKAS requirement to report such samples as deviating has decreased the number of unsuitable samples submitted for analysis. The Laboratories Working Group are looking to contribute with a short article in the AGS Magazine on this topic.

Data quality at large; participation in Proficiency Testing and training of technicians
Clearly, samples that do not conform to testing standards are responsible for project delays, may yield low-quality results, and may create legal problems in the future. Laboratory accreditation is important as is the requirement for the labs to produce high-quality data, consistently. Participation in proficiency testing ensures that the laboratories perform testing under statistically controlled conditions.
AGS should continue educating members and non-members, especially university graduates and junior practitioners, by publishing guides and asking members to give presentations to universities or public forums. The AGS should continue to press for laboratory accreditation and high data quality.

Keeping members updated on standard development
The AGS will continue to keep Members updated on standard development.

The Laboratories Working Group are looking to increase participation, as many AGS Members have laboratories, these companies are encouraged to join the Laboratories Working Group. If you wish to attend AGS Laboratories Working Group meetings, please contact the AGS Secretariat by emailing

This article was featured in the July/August 2018 issue of the AGS Magazine which can be viewed here.