Odour Sensitivity Testing

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ODOUR ACUITY (SENSITIVITY) TESTING

WHY IS ODOUR SENSITIVITY TESTING IMPORTANT?

Silsoe Odours laboratories rely upon trained assessors who are used as panellists in our olfactory testing processes. In order to maintain our high standards for accuracy, all our potential odour assessors are screened to determine their sensitivity to n-butanol, one of the group of fusel alcohols which occurs as a by-product of the fermentation of sugars and carbohydrates. The BS EN13725:2003 standard requires this acuity testing as the criteria by which prospective odour assessors qualify for odour laboratory and Field Odour Survey work.

Our rigorous processes include odour sensitivity testing (sometimes referred to as odour acuity sensitivity testing) for our Field Staff and Environmental Health practitioners in order that odour acuity can be comparatively assessed with the data produced by panels involved in olfactory testing.

WHAT DOES ODOUR SENSITIVITY TESTING INVOLVE?

Primarily the test familiarises prospective odour assessors with the olfactometric procedures they will encounter in the Silsoe Odours laboratory. This involves the completion of an olfactometric measurement, providing test results which are ultimately discarded.

Prospective odour assessors are then required to undertake at least 10 individual threshold estimates (ITE) for the reference gas 60ppm n-butanol in nitrogen. This data is collected in at least three sessions over separate days with a pause of one day between each testing session.

THE BS EN13725:2003 STANDARD CRITERIA

Prospective odour assessors are required to fulfil the following criteria:

  • the antilog of the standard deviations ITE calculated from the logarithms of the individual threshold estimates, expressed in mass concentration units of the reference gas, must be less than 2.3
  • the geometric mean of the individual threshold estimates ITE substance, expressed in mass concentration units of the reference gas, must fall between 20 and 80ppb n-butanol.

SILSOE ODOURS CONSULTANCY MAINTAINS THE HIGHEST STANDARDS

In our 2016 annual International Inter-Laboratory comparison for BS EN13725:2003, Silsoe Odours laboratory ranked in the top 10 for accuracy. We know that businesses depend on the accuracy of our testing processes, which is why rigorous odour acuity sensitivity testing is key to our reputation.

If you would like to become an odour assessor for Silsoe Odours, call our team today on 01525 860 222

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