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The Reston Biogeochemical Processes in Groundwater Laboratory (RBPGL) offers analytical services in aqueous samples for Non-Volatile Dissolved Organic Carbon (NVDOC) and Low Molecular Weight Organic Acids (LMWOA).

NVDOC analyses provide information on the carbon load in contaminated systems and have important implications for the evolution of redox zones and natural attenuation of contaminants. LMWOA analyses support studies that focus on biogeochemical reactions and provide insight into microbial processes. Additionally, we measure redox sensitive species, major cations, anions, alkalinity, trace metals, hydrocarbons, methane, ammonia, and orthophosphate.

The following analyses are available:

If you are interested in using RBPGL services, please see the procedure for requesting services and required forms below.

Prices for Each Type of Analysis (Fiscal Year 2022)

Service Price per sample (USGS) Price per sample (External*)
Non-volatile Dissolved Organic Carbon $82.18 $120.10
Low Molecular Weight Organic Acid-Lactate, Acetate, Propionate, Formate, Butyrate, Pyruvate, Benzoate (no pretreatment) $69.15 $107.42
Low Molecular Weight Organic Acid-Lactate, Acetate, Propionate, Formate, Butyrate, Pyruvate, Benzoate (pretreatment) $99.51 $117.01

*Non-USGS orders, credit card payments only.

Procedure for Requesting Services

  • Please request analysis and agree on a payment option in advance by emailing

  • The submitter should fill out the Sample Submission Excel Form (an individual file is needed for each type of analysis). The file should be emailed to and a hard copy should be included with each shipment.

  • Ship samples to:

    Jeanne Jaeschke

    U.S. Geological Survey

    12201 Sunrise Valley Dr.

    Mail Stop 431

    Reston, VA 20192

  • Label inside of cooler with return address and telephone number with waterproof marker. Coolers will be returned by RBPGL to sample submitter at their expense using a Federal Express shipping label completed by the submitter identifying the USGS internal cost code or Federal Express account number or return and of by parcel post. RBPGL is not open Saturday, Sunday, or Federal Holidays; therefore, coolers should not be sent the day before a holiday. Any cooler or container not accompanied by a prepaid shipping return will not be automatically returned. For answers to additional questions sample submitter should email

  • Data will not be released until payment has been received.

  • Laboratory services provided for USGS programs and personnel are typically paid via a journal voucher (JV).

  • If laboratory services are provided to other federal, state, and county agencies, these analytical costs are higher due to USGS overhead. Prior to accepting samples a User Agreement Form must be completed and be submitted for Bureau approval (normally approved within 1 week). Payments from non-USGS agencies are preferably made via credit card and should also be accompanied by a completed RBPGL Order Form. Contact Jeanne Jaeschke ( or for more information.

  • If you are a USGS group and would like to request and pay in advance for analyses of samples to be collected next fiscal year please contact RBPGL and fill out the Facility Service Invoice Request.

Non-volatile Dissolved Organic Carbon (NVDOC)

References and Recommended Readings for NVDOC

American Society for Testing and Material, 1991, Standard Specifications for Reagent Water. D1193-77 (Reapproved 1983). Annual Book of ASTM Standards, Vole 11.01. ASTM: Philadelphia, PA.

Shimadzu TOC-V-CPN & TOC Control V Software User’s Manual (2001) P/N 638-94239B. Shimadzu Corporation, Analytical && Measuring Instruments Division; Kyoto, Japan.

Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater Method 5310 B; Total Organic Carbon (TOC), High Temperature Combustion Method, American Public Health Association. 21st Edition 2005.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, EPA Method 415.1. Determination of Total Organic Carbon in Water using Combustion or Oxidation-

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. “Environmental Monitoring and Assesment Program: QA Glossary.”EPA. Environmental Protection Agency, 08 Nov. 2010. Web.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Method Detection Limit (MDL) procedure found in Title 40Code of Federal Regulations Part 136 (40 CFR 136, Appendix B, revision 1.11).

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Report EPA 2000, 2000-National water quality inventory—1998 report 841–F–00–006, 45 p.

U.S. Geological Survey, 2002, USGS Handbook 445-3-H, Safety and Environmental Health Handbook, 435 p

U.S. Geological Survey, variously dated, National field manual for the collection of water-quality data: U.S. Geological Survey Techniques of Water-Resources Investigations, Book 9, chaps. A1-A9.

40 CFR part 136, Appendix B, rev. EPA Method 415.1, 1.11

  • ERA Resources: Product Catalogs (Waters ERA)
  • Analytical Detection Limit Guidance and Laboratory Guide for Determining Method Detection Limits (Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources)
  • Analytical Chromatography Vials (MilliporeSigma)
  • Ground Water and Drinking Water (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency)

Low Molecular Weight Organic Acids (lactate, acetate, propionate, formate, butyrate, pyruvate and benzoate)

References and Recommended Readings for LMWOA

*Any use of trade, firm, or product names is for descriptive purposes only and does not imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.