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Oak Ridge Sample Management Office

The Oak Ridge Sample Management Office (SMO) serves the United States Department of Energy (DOE) by providing a cost-effective, performance-based approach for the procurement of analytical laboratory and data quality services for its Oak Ridge Operations.

Oak Ridge SMO Mission

In May 1996 DOE Environmental Management issued a policy requiring the establishment of a single sample management office at each DOE field operations office. This policy eliminated the duplication of effort associated with the awarding and management of contracts, which resulted in the inefficient use of DOE laboratory resources.

Based upon this policy, the SMO mission and objectives are simple:

  • Procure analytical services based upon a best-value added determination and free from any financial interests related to the contracting decision.
  • Review sample management activities to assure quality and the cost-effective provision of analytical services.
  • Maintain a list of qualified full-service and specialty laboratories that can be used by DOE Oak Ridge contractors.
  • Establish the routine use of Data Quality Objectives (DQO) processes in planning sampling and analysis activities and effective participation in a national characterization quality assurance program.
  • Provide data verification and validation services to projects and programs associated with Oak Ridge Reservation activities.

Sample Management Office Contacts

Oak Ridge SMO Manager:

Phil Clark (865) 241- 4598

UCOR Contract Laboratories SCA:

Miranda Goss (865) 241-3482


Analytical Project Manager:

Bill Rogers (865) 241-2252

Analytical Project Manager:

Nancy Thomson (865) 241-5511

Analytical Project Manager:

Wayne Towery (865) 241-5479

Analytical Project Manager:

Carol Erikson (865) 574-9702

Analytical Data Manager:

Tammy Presley (865) 576-9942

SMO Business Manager:

Tammie McEntee (865) 241-5270


Sample Management Office Services

Please contact the Oak Ridge SMO Manager, Phil Clark, for more information, project estimates, and to initiate a work release for any of the following services offered by the Oak Ridge SMO:

  • Project Assistance and Planning
    • Assist in creating data quality objectives (DQOs) and establishing analytical service needs
    • Provide technical input for preparing project plans, quality assurance plans, and sampling and analysis plans
    • Develop analytical statements of work (SOW) and select laboratory services
  • Sample and Data Tracking
    • Track sample receipt by laboratory and monitor analytical progress
    • Prepare status reports for project personnel
    • Prepare and maintain data receipt schedules
    • Perform verification and validation of data deliverables
    • Close out procurement when project is completed
  • Laboratory Performance Evaluation
  • Sample and Data Closeout
    • Track sample residues and prepare appropriate documentation reflecting proper disposal
    • Ensure that data are stored, archived, and/or destroyed as required
    • Provide financial accruals and obligations to project managers

Approved Laboratories

The Oak Ridge Sample Management Office utilizes a suite of qualified full-service and specialty laboratories whose performance are monitored, evaluated, and compared by the Integrated Performance Indicator Program (IPIP). These laboratories are reviewed under the Department of Energy Consolidated Audit Program (DOECAP).

Oak Ridge SMO Laboratories Listing


Double-Blind Performance Evaluation

Double-blind performance evaluation (PE) samples are introduced into field sampling batches. Samples are introduced in a manner whereby the contract analytical laboratory is unaware of either the nature of the sample (i.e., a PE sample) or of its component concentrations, thus preventing “special” treatment of PE samples. SMO Double-Blind

Double-blind PE samples, created from bulk materials, groundwater, surface water, or soils collected from near the sampling areas, mimic routine field samples in both matrix and contaminant concentrations. PE samples are prepared in the following matrices:

  • Groundwater,
  • Surface water, and
  • Soil

Bulk materials have been certified for background concentrations by an independent laboratory. A sample aliquot is spiked with radiological, inorganic, or organic traceable standards.

After preparation, PE samples are sent by courier to the field sampling location where they are inserted into the field batch with other samples and sent to the laboratory for analysis. PE sample packaging and labels are identical to the field samples to ensure that they are not identified as PE samples by the commercial laboratory. PE samples are then analyzed by the laboratory along with ordinary samples; results of PE sample analyses are therefore useful in evaluating the commercial laboratory's performance as a whole.

PE analytical results from the commercial laboratory are evaluated against documented values. Comparison studies help ensure that accurate, reliable, high-quality data are received from the commercial analytical laboratories.


Integrated Performance Indicator Program (IPIP)

Accurate, reliable, cost-effective, and quality laboratory performance is crucial to ensuring high-quality data. Performances of analytical laboratories are evaluated and compared through the Integrated Performance Indicator Program (IPIP). The objective of IPIP is to evaluate analytical laboratories based on a set of standardized performance criteria that can then be quantitatively tracked and trended. The SMO uses IPIP reports to monitor and evaluate laboratories. Satisfactory participation in the program is required for continued utilization. Laboratories are evaluated on the following criteria:

  • Holding times,
  • Turnaround times (TAT),
  • Sample disposition,
  • Contract compliance verification,
  • Data deliverables,
  • Data validation performance
  • Single-Blind performance evaluation (PE) program,
  • Double-blind PE program,
  • Audit performance/findings, responses, and close-out.

By tracking these performance indicators, the SMO is able to team with the best performing laboratories. In addition, individual laboratory strengths allow the SMO to optimize laboratory selection to the needs of the project.