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KAR Laboratories

RECENT NEWS   February 19, 2018


  • November 1, 2017


    Acquisition in Michigan Supports Pace’s Growth Plans for the Great Lakes Region


    Today, we completed the asset purchase of KAR Laboratories in Kalamazoo, MI.  This addition provides a strategic geographic location to better serve our existing clients and to continue our growth in the Great Lakes Region.   We will connect this laboratory to our Grand Rapids laboratory to better serve our Michigan customers.  KAR Laboratories has focused on serving drinking water, and wastewater customers in the southern Michigan area.  Most of KAR Laboratories employees will be joining Pace.  They bring a strong reputation for excellent customer service and also add sample collection capabilities. 


    The lab will be a part of our Great Lakes business led by Senior General Manager Karl Anderson and Regional Sales Manager, Mark Hampton.  If you have questions on the capabilities of this new addition, please contact Karl or Mark.  The Grand Rapids leadership team will play a key role in integrating and supporting this new operation.


    We are confident that our leadership team in the Great Lakes will transition this new laboratory to Pace smoothly and will find future growth and long term success. 

    About Pace Analytical

    For over 39 years, Pace Analytical has provided comprehensive analytical testing and emergency disaster response services to a broad range of clients, markets and industries. Today, Pace Analytical is recognized as the industry’s second largest environmental testing firm in the United States, operating a nationwide network of 29 laboratories, including 5 specialty services laboratories and 46 service centers. Pace prides itself in providing both national and local coverage with exceptional service, legally defensible data, and convenient and reliable online data management. Pace’s specialty analytical services include air toxics, vapor intrusion, biota analysis, sediment testing, dioxin/furan analysis, drinking water analysis, UCMR-3 and UCMR-4 testing, radiochemistry and forensics.

    Visit KAR Laboratories at

     Full press release is HERE


    Pace Analytical Services, Inc.
    Mark Hampton | Great Lakes Regional Sales Manager
    P: 262.339.2579

    Pace Analytical Services, Inc.
    Karl Anderson | General Manager
    P: 317.228.3119

    Media Contact:
    Pace Analytical Services, Inc.
    Tom Parker | Corporate Marketing Communications Manager
    P: 612-656-2276




  • 2017 Profit Sharing Announced - 09/26/2017 - The Board of Directors voted to award checks in the amount of 7% of all wages earned this fiscal year for current KAR Laboratories, Inc. employees. We thank our professional staff for their contributions in this very successful year.


  • Faster, more reliable Internet Service and LAN Backbone
    3/12/2017 - We hopped up service by hopping on the fiber optics bandwagon. Early this year, we ditched the unreliable 60 Mbps cable internet service provider and upgraded to 250 Mbps fiber optics. This month, we upgraded our Local Area Network backbone to 10 Gbps fiber optics. Providing more than raw speed, fiber optics is naturally immune to interference from the many high-powered RF generators we have in the lab.


  • 2016 Profit Sharing Announced - 09/25/2016 - Checks equaling 7% of all wages earned this fiscal year were distributed to all current KAR Laboratories, Inc. employees. Thank you KAR staff for another extremely successful year.


  •  Lab Equipment Update

    New Automatic Titration System - 4/28/2016 - Titrations using a burette is a proven lab technique but somewhat boring and slow, while a precise endpoint can sometimes be subjective. Automation to the rescue! We've invested in the latest Hanna Instruments HI902C auto titrator and autosampler which will be taking over pH and alkalinity measurements.

    Dionex Aquion Ion Chromatograph, 2016

    Another New Ion Chromatography System (IC) - 3/16/2016 - Anions such as Fluoride, Chloride, Nitrate, Nitrite, Bromide, Phosphate, and Sulfate can be analyzed in one run with an IC. Our existing Lachat 8000 IC, which has served us well for many years, just can't keep up. April runs it nearly non-stop 5-6 days a week, 24 hours a day. So today we ordered a brand new Dionex Aquion IC system. This addition will provide the throughput and capacity needed as well as redundancy in the event of an instrument failure.

    Dionex Aquion Ion Chromatograph, 2016

    Another New Gas Chromatograph (GC) - 2/4/2016 - PCBs and pesticides at trace levels continue to be of concern in industrial countries and especially in Southwest Michigan, due to the paper industry activities. In 2015 alone, we've reported over 6000 individual PCB Arochlor results. We think it's important to support these efforts with the best equipment and service. So we bought another new Perkin-Elmer GC, model Clarus 580, with autosampler and dual Ni-63 electron capture (ECD) detectors. Reporting unconfirmed results is not in our clients best interests, so we configure our non-GC-MS GCs with one sample injector which then splits into two dissimilar analytical separation columns, allowing built-in identification and quantitation confirmation for each reported contaminant. Does YOUR lab do that?

    Perkin-Elmer Clarus GC-ECD2

    A third SPE (Solid Phase Extraction) Workstation - 8/25/2015 - The popularity of our drinking water testing kit 360 required yet another Zymark AutoTrace SPE Workstation to maintain efficiency and throughput and ensure fast results. The additional automation means we can now prep as many as 18 samples for GC-MS analysis in about 2-3 hours.

    (3) Zymark AutoTrace Automated SPE Workstations

    New Amines Instrument - 8/25/2015 - Our aging Tremetrics Gas Chromatograph has been replaced with a Thermo Trace Ultra unit with Split/Splitless injector. Upgraded with the industry-leading DETector Engineering & Technology retrofit NPD (Nitrogen Phosphorus Detector), it has a ceramic jet and Type 4 white ceramic ion source for the best possible Nitrogen response. Topping it off is a Thermo AS3000 105-sample autoinjector. This setup is used for amine compounds that are very tricky to analyze correctly or even detect at trace levels with inferior equipment.

    Three dual column, dual-FID gas chromatographs

    Another Hop Essential Oils Instrument - 8/14/2015 - A third, identically configured Thermo Trace Ultra Gas Chromatograph (GC) was purchased with Dual Flame Ionization Detectors, AS3000 Autosampler, and Split/Splitless Injector. This GC will add extra capacity and ensure fast turnaround for our Hop Oil Profile customers, as well as facilitating our alcohols, glycols, and carboxylic acid testing.

    Three dual column, dual-FID gas chromatographs

    A second Ultra-Trace Mercury Analyzer - 12/18/2014 - We installed another new PS Analytical Millennium Merlin 1631 Ultra-Trace Mercury Analyzer system with autosampler, PC, and printer. Our original unit, one of the first to come on line, has processed well over 15,000 billable samples. KAR was the first laboratory in Michigan to offer this service way back in 2000. Both systems will be used in production to ensure fast, consistent and uninterrupted service to our many mercury customers.

    KAR Labs Ultra-Trace Mercury Analyzers

    More and better ICP-MS - 12/03/2014 - Our Varian 820 Inductively Coupled Plasma - Mass Spectrometer (ICP-MS) is 6 years old and in that time, technology in the field of trace metals analysis marches on. To fend off obsolescence, we ordered a new Perkin-Elmer NexION 350X instruments with all the bells and whistles, including a FAST discrete autosampler which cycles a sample in about a minute compared to 3-5 minutes for normal autosamplers.

    KAR Labs NexION 350X ICP-MS, 1 of 2

    Organics Laboratory Upgrades - 6/10/2014 - Improvements in the lab the past few months were made by adding 3 additional instruments. An identical pair of Thermo Trace Ultra Gas Chromatographs were purchased with Thermo AI3000 Autosamplers, Split/Splitless Injectors, and Dual Flame Ionization Detectors to replace older equipment. Also added was a second HPLC, a Waters LC Module 1 Plus High Performance Liquid Chromatograph with Model 717 Autosampler, thermostatically heated column chamber, and Model 486 Programmable UV Detector. This HPLC will exclusively service the hops and brewing industry and will free up our existing HPLC for routine environmental testing such as Benzidines, Formaldehyde, EDTA, and method development and validation.

    HPLCs, a matching pair
    A pair of GC-FID instruments

    Another GC-MS - 12/23/2013 - Our existing Thermo Trace DSQ II gas chromatograph-mass spectrometer impressed us enough to invest in another. This one is configured with a Temperature Programmed Vaporization inlet with Solvent Vapor Exit accessory (PTV/SVE), widely regarded as the most versatile gas chromatography inlet system available. The mass spectrometer has some notable options including a Direct Insertion Probe accessory which introduces solids and liquids directly into the ion source, making it a fantastic tool for the identification of unknowns. It also has chemical ionization (CI) option, the optional 250 L/sec turbomolecular pump, and an accessory ion gauge. The GC has the very versatile TriPlus ALL autosampler which can be configured for liquid injections as well as heated static headspace sampling with 6-place incubator.

    A pair of Thermo DSQII GC-MS instruments

    Laboratory Notebook Upgrades - 10/8/2013 - We've added a dozen high performance notebook computers to our fleet. These desktop replacements feature 1680x1024 screens and all of our PCs have solid state hard drives. Our laboratory maintains a total of 62 computers at the Kalamazoo facility.


    Major upgrade to our quadrapole GC-MS system - 8/8/2013 - Due to the ever increasing demands for lower and lower detection limits, we completed a major upgrade to our Thermo Trace DSQ GC-MS. Now officially know as a DSQ II, the entire ion source, mass prefilter, RF generator, electronics, and computer/software were replaced. The manufacture claimed a 10-fold increase in sensitivity, but we don't agree (it's more like 20-50 fold!) Now it's so sensitive, we've switched from Splitless Injection Mode to Split Mode for routine work, keeping the injection port, GC column, and mass detector clean for much longer than before the upgrade.


    A second TOC (Total Organic Carbon) Analyzer - 7/08/2013 - For redundancy and increased capacity, we added another OI Analytical Model 1010 Carbon Analyzer with Autosampler, computer and printer.

    A pair of TOC instruments


  •  New Trace Wastewater Testing - 11/1/2015 - Sometimes, discharge permits demand detection limits for organic contaminants that are lower than even GC-MS methods can provide. We've achieved some incredibly low detection limits for wastewater using EPA Methods 605, 609, 610, 611, and 612. These methods use incredibly sensitive equipment to achieve detection limit goals. Here's a small subset of notable detection limits we've recently reported in wastewater effluents:

   2,4-Dinitrotoluene 0.06 ug/L GC-Nitrogen/Phosphorus detector

   2,6-Dinitrotoluene 0.03 ug/L GC-Nitrogen/Phosphorus detector

   Benzidine 0.1 ug/L HPLC-Electrochemical detector

   Benzo(a)anthracene 0.04 ug/L HPLC-Fluorescence detector

   Benzo(b)fluoranthene 0.03 ug/L HPLC-Fluorescence detector

   Indeno(123cd)pyrene 0.13 ug/L HPLC-Fluorescence detector

   Hexachlorobenzene 0.16 ug/L GC-Electron Capture detector


  •  Profit Sharing Announced - 09/18/2015 - The Board of Directors authorized the annual profit-sharing bonus to staff in the amount of 5% of all wages earned this fiscal year for all current KAR Laboratories, Inc. employees. We wish to thank our professional staff for their diligent work and sacrifices made this year.


  •  2015 Harvest Time
    8/25/2015 - Today brought 53 hop samples for hop acids testing. Mostly Cascade, Chinook and Centennial, also Teamaker, Columbus, Sorachi-Ace, Mackinac, Newport, Willamette, Nugget, Crystal, Cashmere, Pearl, Tettnang to name a few. Most were grown in the Midwest, but plenty from around the USA too. Gary, Matt and Julie prepped the hops and loaded the extracts on the HPLC autosamplers while Emily runs the moisture tests. Tomorrow, results as promised!



  •  Anniversary Celebrations 7-30-15 - Sandy Mertz, 25 years of service. 5-20-14 - Garrett Ervin, 20 years of service. 3/22/15 - Dave Alkema, 25 years of service. 5/1/13 - Gary Buyze, 15 years of service. 2/2/12 - Hope Stanley, 15 years of service. 4/26/11 - Julie Rumsey, 25 years of service. Anniversary celebrations include cake, a gift certificate to a hotel, lodge, or Bed & Breakfast of their choice, and other goodies such as an engraved plaque, engraved desk clock, or engraved Swiss-made Tag Heuer wristwatch.


  •  Recent Employee News - 2/19/2015 - Two KAR employees have some very good news to share. Gerrit Rauch recently graduated from Grand Valley State University with a Biomedical Sciences degree and has been accepted at Michigan State University medical school, starting in June. Another student employee at KAR Labs, McKinzie Ervin, has been awarded the prestigious Heyl Scholarship, which includes a Kalamazoo College full ride with 4 year tuition & board, books and a semester abroad at a sister school. Congratulations to those two exceptional young students for their hard work and devotion to the sciences.


  •  New Hops Test - 9/23/2014 - We've developed and validated a new test called "Hop Essential Oils by Gas Chromatography" using the American Society of Brewing Chemists HOPS-17 method. This is a useful and informative qualitative test to aid hop growers in marketing and indexing their crops that goes above and beyond the usual and required quantitative tests such as Hop Acids and Hop Storage Index. This test profiles hops for certain components that contribute to flavor and aroma characteristics. We use a pair of dual-column, dual-flame ionization detector gas chromatographs (GC-FID2) which each allows two channels of data with one injection. The laboratory report includes the percentage of these key components: Myrcene (citrusy), Humulene (citrusy, floral, woody, earthy), Farnesene, Caryophyllene (herbal, spicy, woody), Linalool (floral, fruity), and Geraniol. A Total Essential Oils in Hops and Hop Pellets by Steam Distillation using method HOPS-13 is included with this test and of course we always give you a free moisture (dry matter) content with every hop test we do.


  •  It's 2014 Harvest Time!
    Yesterday brought 26 hop samples. Mostly Chinook, Cascade and Centennial, these are from growers in the more southern latitudes - North Carolina, Colorado, Maryland, New York, Delaware, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Southern Michigan. It's interesting to inspect hops and watch the harvest as it relates to climate and location. All testing has been completed, then we do a peer review and then QA review. The results are sent to our clients the day after the samples are received.


  •  Lunchroom Whiteboard - 8/21/2014 - Resident artwork
    5/8/15 -Gerrit Rauch farewell party


    8/21/14 - Norman's birthday

    8/8/14 - Garrett's birthday




  •  Surprise MDEQ Waste Inspection Audit - 7/11/14 - Today we had an unannounced visit from our local regulatory agency. We are happy to report that the audit was concluded with ZERO findings. In fact, the inspector commented, "you're boring". We're OK with that!


  •  Congratulations Andie! -5/28/14 - One of our extraordinary employees "Andie" Grube recently earned her Bachelor's of Science degree magna cum laude in Criminology/Criminal Science from Portland State University, Portland, Oregon. Having worked in the crime lab here in Kalamazoo, we are very lucky to have such a bright and energetic analytical chemist. She brings a unique skill set to our lab and has some interesting real life "CSI:" investigator stories to share.


  •  John Nathanial Karnemaat, Age 87 05/08/14 - (From the Kalamazoo Gazette): "Devoted husband, father, and grandfather passed away peacefully during a beautiful sunrise on Monday, May 5, 2014, in his home surrounded by his loving family. John was born on the family farm in Fremont, MI, son of Koos and Etta Karnemaat. He attended a one-room schoolhouse, graduated from Fremont High School and Western Michigan University, and then continued his education with graduate work at the University of Cincinnati. His professional career began at the Upjohn Company and Perrigo. As a scientist, he was involved in many creative endeavors as founder and partner in the BioClinical Laboratory, KAR Laboratories and Interfibe Corporation. In 1952, John married the love of his life, Mildred Arlene Thomas and together, they raised four children during their 62 years of marriage. He was extremely proud of his family and enjoyed spending happy hours together at home and at their cottage at Gun Lake. John had a passion for music. He played the violin and shared his fine tenor voice in the church choir and in local choral groups. For over 60 years, John was a member of First United Methodist Church of Kalamazoo. He and Millie loved to travel and made many lasting friendships and memories on their adventures around the world. John's keen and creative mind was never at rest, solving problems and working on projects through his final days. Family and friends will always remember his dry sense of humor, quiet chuckle, calm and humble disposition, generosity and love of Sweetwater's donuts. John was preceded in death by his parents and sister, Meredith Gilbert, and son-in-law, Charlie Manos. He is survived by his wife, Millie; four children and eight grandchildren, Janet Manos and her children, Lydia and Jacob; Richard (Deb) Karnemaat and their sons, Ryan and Nathan; Paul (Chrissie) Karnemaat; Julie Turner (Derek Turner), and children, Hannah, Ian, Abe, and Samantha. He is also survived by an extended family of in-laws, nieces and nephews. A memorial service was held on Thursday, May 8, 2014 at First United Methodist Church of Kalamazoo. The family requests that in lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the First United Methodist Church of Kalamazoo or memories and condolences may be left at www.avinkcremation.com. "


  •  New KAR Car - 8/16/2012
    Joining our fleet is a new 2012 Ford Focus 5-Door. This one has a dual clutch 6-speed gearbox, is rated at 28/38 mpg, and is a blast to drive. Give us a wave!


  •  Employee News - 6/8/2012
    Some of our customers know Gerrit Rauch from his sample pickup rounds. Gerrit has worked part-time for KAR Labs for over 5 years in-between his studies in high school and college. This summer, Gerrit had the opportunity to be a fly fishing guide in the Alaska wilderness at TickChik Narrow Lodge. Good luck Gerrit, we'll miss you!


  •  Kalamazoo Hosts MWEA Joint Conference
     9/27/11 - Kalamazoo welcomed this year's Michigan Water Environment Association's "Biosolids/IPP (Industrial Pretreatment Program) Joint Conference" on Sept. 27 & 28. It was held at the Clarion Hotel and Kalamazoo AirZoo. KAR Laboratories, Inc. had "TOP GUN" top billing. Conference attendees were treated to a fantastic meal under the wings of the SR71A Blackbird aircraft. The group was free to roam about the exhibits and enjoy guided tours, and participate in the several simulators and rides available at the 'Zoo. Three aircraft were also sponsored by KAR, allowing participants to climb into the cockpit and try on a warplane for size.



KAR Laboratories, Inc.

269.381.9666* M-F 8-5 EST