Question 1: To test the accuracy of prototype spectrometers, should we try to replicate the fluorescence spectra of a certified calibration standard kit? This kit covers a spectral region of 300 - 770 nm, and has spectral correction software with a detailed SOP. It is pricey though -- $675 for a handful of uses. It would be a prototype validation, not something to send out in kits for unknown sample comparisons.
Spectral Fluorescence Standard Kit: https://www.sigmaaldrich.com/catalog/product/sigma/69336?lang=en®ion=US Click on the data sheet for the SOP: https://www.sigmaaldrich.com/content/dam/sigma-aldrich/docs/Sigma/Datasheet/8/69336dat.pdf
Question 2: To determine the precision of our spectrometers and our ability to distinguish among different types of oils, should we include a series of neat products in spectrometer kits? Could we distinguish various grades of crude oil, motor oil, and animal/vegetable oil? Also, what is the grade of crude oil found in the Gulf of Mexico? What other regions (and their primary crude oils) are of interest to us? Note that in the list below, “heavy, medium, light” refer to API gravity (see explanation: http://www.petroleum.co.uk/api)
Initial thoughts: Raw Crude Oil Heavy -- Alberta Oil Sands (extra heavy) -- supplier? Medium -- Texas Raw Crude (http://www.texasrawcrude.com) or (http://www.janulus.com/industrial-scientific/unrefined-crude-oil-from-texas-16oz) Light -- Bakken Crude (http://www.janulus.com/industrial-scientific/unrefined-crude-oil-from-north-dakota-16oz) Bunker fuel (grade?) Marine diesel Petroleum motor oil Synthetic motor oil (polyalphaolephins) Fish oil
Is the list above sufficient? Are those materials relevant? What other oils should we include? Where can we get a consistent supply of these materials to distribute with kits?