By replacing an inflexible LIMS with MATRIX Gemini LIMS, the analytical laboratory at a leading metal refiner has been able to incorporate 100% of its test records and results. The Autoscribe Informatics LIMS solution can be easily configured to meet the laboratory workflow rather than laboratory practices being adjusted to fit the LIMS. Ongoing in-house configuration has refined procedures to bring further time savings and efficiency gains for laboratory staff.
A world leader in mining and metal refining has an in-house inorganic QA/Process Control laboratory which provides process control analysis, final product analysis and environmental analyses for the company’s refinery and supporting operations. The laboratory performs metals (trace and bulk) analysis on in-process samples from the refinery as well as final product analysis and certification. It also supports the other business units and service groups on-site and carries out some effluent and groundwater analyses.
The laboratory is registered to ISO-9001:2008, and follows industry best practices. It processes approximately 70,000 samples a year, with typically 2 to 6 tests per sample and makes use of a wide range of analytical methods, including ICP and AAS techniques, elemental analysis, gas chromatography, autotitration, total organic carbon and particle size distribution. A LIMS had been in place previously for approximately 9 years but only an estimated 50% of the laboratory’s workflow was ever implemented in that system. Everything else was managed via paper records and laboratory administrative staff efforts. A new LIMS was required that could:
- Be configured for the required workflow
- Incorporate 100% of the analytical results and test records
- Minimize/eliminate transcription errors
- Run all calculations without the need for spreadsheets
- Operate using an Oracle database
- Be amenable to ad-hoc or non-routine samples
Crucially, the main requirement was a LIMS that could be configured to the laboratory’s work, rather than having to tailor the work/tasks to the requirements of the LIMS.
Autoscribe’s Matrix Gemini LIMS was chosen to replace the existing LIMS. During the LIMS evaluation process, Autoscribe asked the company to supply its worst-case laboratory workflow/data requirements. Within just a few days Autoscribe had prepared a sample configuration incorporating that workflow, including calculations. This impressive demonstration gave the company the confidence that Matrix Gemini could do anything that would ever be needed. After some further detailed discussions a LIMS that met the needs of the laboratory was supplied and further configuration has allowed even more of the wish list items to be incorporated.
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