The National Association of Testing Authorities (NATA), based in Australia, is one of the largest comprehensive laboratory accreditation bodies in the world and provides independent assurance of technical competence through a network of best practice industry experts. This accreditation is highly regarded as it formally recognises facilities across a range of industries that provide excellent standards of service in reliability, safety and efficiency in technical services.
The accreditation is granted to laboratories in compliance with ISO/IEC 17025 and the field-specific criteria which is determined via an on-site assessment of resources, procedures and documentation. The organisation must demonstrate that it can competently perform all activities included within its class or field of accreditation.
All aspects of the facility’s operation are thoroughly investigated and NATA regularly evaluates areas such as quality control, management systems, reporting, staff training, proficiency and equipment performance to ensure all the data produced is reliable and accurate. As a result, clients can be confident that the final data reports received are of high quality and that all international laboratory best practices have been followed.
The Gekko Assay Laboratory is located at Ballarat in Victoria, Australia. It is a coarse gold assay facility that Gekko stated allows the company to further expand its capabilities and provide support for its Metallurgical Laboratory. The laboratory offers a wide range of analytical services including gold and platinum group metals by fire assay, leachwell (cyanide extraction) and base metal analysis.
Shaun Marrow, services manager at Gekko’s Assay Laboratory, said: “NATA accreditation puts the Assay Laboratory on a level playing field with our competitors. We are now able to market our capabilities and give the client confidence that the laboratory follows best practices but still achieves great turnaround times at a competitive price.”
The Gekko Assay laboratory also provides services for both the Gekko Metallurgical Laboratory and external clients. The high capacity of the equipment allows for the processing of large and multiple samples simultaneously. This not only decreases turnaround time but improves the accuracy of data from low yields. Gekko believes that its accreditation will appeal to a broad range of clients, including those involved in exploration and mine production.