Mercury Testing for RoHS Compliance

LCD Screens Contain Mercury, Which Is Regulated By RoHS

APPLIED TECHNICAL SERVICES PROVIDES MERCURY (HG) TESTING FOR ROHS COMPLIANCE. MANUFACTURERS LOOKING TO SELL ELECTRONICS IN THE EU ARE SUBJECT TO THESE CONSUMER/ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTIONS STANDARDS, SO ATS HELPS ACHIEVE AND MAINTAIN COMPLIANCE BY TESTING CLIENT PRODUCTS FOR UNWARRANTED AMOUNTS OF MERCURY.

Mercury in Electronics

Mercury is an element featured in the monitors or screens of certain electronic products. Liquid Crystal Displays (LCDs) are used in laptops, televisions, and cellphones. Ionized mercury vapor fills the fluorescent lights that display the images we see on the sundry of screens that feature so abundantly in modern life.

Mercury also acts as a neurotoxin to humans, causing a variety of physiological impairments when its vapor is inhaled. Its health effects have led to many regulatory bodies restricting mercury’s use, especially in consumer products. One such regulation was put forth by the EU in the form of the Restriction of Hazardous Substances Directive (RoHS). As part of a larger initiative governing the recycling of electronics, RoHS determines an acceptably low amount of mercury to be included in consumer electronics for consumer safety purposes. Failure to comply with these strict directives opens businesses selling in the EU (both manufacturers and distributors) susceptible to denial of import or punitive fines.




RoHS Compliance Standards

Instead of outright banning the use of restricted materials, RoHS instead sets thresholds of acceptable use. The RoHS limit for mercury content is 0.01% (1,000 ppm) of its mass. This limit does not, however, apply to the entirety of the product, but instead to the makeup of each component that can be mechanically separated from the whole. Once each individual component has been judged to be satisfactory on an individual basis, only then is a product considered RoHS compliant.

RoHS represents a significant barrier for consumer electronics manufacturers to sell their products if they feature an unapproved amount of mercury. To provide for the needs of clients seeking entry into the European market, Applied Technical Services offers our mercury testing capabilities. We can help your comapny achieve RoHS compliance.


About Our Method: ICP-AES

We achieve this by performing Inductively Coupled Plasma-Atomic Emission Spectroscopy (ICP-AES), executed to ASTM Method E1479. ICP-AES is an analysis method that isolates the constituent chemicals of the sample material, and then measures the presence of any compounds of interest. ICP-AES is a destructive testing method in that sample materials must be chemically digested into a liquid form for analysis.

The analytical power of the method more than makes up for the loss of the test sample, as it enables our chemists to achieve detection limits at the parts-per-million level. The same testing method specifications are used to measure the presence of other metals restricted by RoHS — hexavalent chromium, lead, and cadmium. Our lab is A2LA accredited to perform ASTM E1479 to detect each of the above substances.


ATS and RoHS Compliance

For more than 50 years, ATS has provided testing, inspection, and engineering consulting services of the highest grade. We are pleased to serve clients from around the world who represent a variety of industries. Our roster of talented chemists returns accurate findings quickly because of their access to our powerful analytical equipment and their experience regularly performing ASTM E1479 to determine RoHS compliance. ATS is dedicated to helping clients gain and maintain RoHS compliance for their products — let us take a closer look.

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