Uncertainty in the quantification of odour measurements is a difficult (but needed) task. Critical aspects include panel selection (required by dynamic olfactometry), sampling, and stability of the samples. Proficiency tests (PTs) can help evaluate such contributions; however, the classical approach to PTs, in which laboratories analyse real samples taken from the field, are not as applicable in this field, and are often implemented by only using dry gas cylinders containing stable compounds. Consequently, uncertainties related to the sampling activity cannot be assessed. In particular, high odour levels and the presence of water vapour in emission sources can create significative biases due to sampling techniques used and chemical reactions that can occur before analysis. In this work, we present experimental notes, developed using the experimental facility ‘LOOP’, realised at the RSE research centre in Italy, in order to “help” the definition, in an upgraded protocol for implementing PTs for odour determinations. Using this bench loop is advantageous as it involves the possibility of implementing samples in conditions very similar to reality (i.e., high temperatures, high water content, and the presence of chemical interferents).
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