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Certification of Standard Reference Material® 2859 and Standard Reference Material® 2861 Restricted Elements in Polyvinyl Chloride



John R. Sieber, John L. Molloy, Nathanael A. Heckert


The National Institute of Standards and Technology has issued its first Standard Reference Materials for elemental analysis of polyvinyl chloride. The custom designed PVC blends contain elements regulated in consumer products by the United States, the European Union, and other governments worldwide. The regulated elements are antimony, arsenic, barium, bromine, cadmium, chromium, lead, mercury, and selenium. Also, present in the PVC blend are elements from performance additives: calcium, sulfur, and tin; and from contaminants: copper, and iron. The development and certification project was designed and coordinated by NIST with technical assistance from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, Underwriters’ Laboratories and the University of Washington Physics Department. This report describes how the PVC blends were designed, manufactured, packaged, analyzed, and value-assigned. Users will find descriptions of material heterogeneity testing and information from several test methods used for quantitative analyses of the PVC blends. The SRMs are available for purchase with one unit consisting of a single bottle containing 25 g of extruded pellets. In addition to describing the development of these SRMs, this report describes a process for creating calibrations for X- ray fluorescence spectrometry with mass fraction values traceable to the International System of Units using NIST SRM 3100 series, single element, spectrometric solutions. After the issuance of the SRMs, they were analyzed to obtain the mass fraction values for hexavalent chromium using a new, high-resolution X-ray emission method. The new method is described briefly with reference given to a detailed journal publication.
Special Publication (NIST SP) - 260-200
Report Number


Homogeneity Testing, Inductively Coupled Plasma Optical Emission Spectrometry (ICPOES), Oxidation State, Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC), Product Safety, Restricted Substances, Standard Reference Material, X-Ray Emission Spectrometry (XES), X Ray Fluorescence Spectrometry (XRF).


Sieber, J. , Molloy, J. and Heckert, N. (2020), Certification of Standard Reference Material® 2859 and Standard Reference Material® 2861 Restricted Elements in Polyvinyl Chloride, Special Publication (NIST SP), National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD, [online], (Accessed June 15, 2024)


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Created April 1, 2020, Updated June 1, 2020