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In the laboratory world, a preparation applies to all processing done to an aliquot prior to instrumental analysis. The details of preparation might involve many steps (e.g., taking an aliquot, extraction, and cleanup). Most methods have a primary processing step, such as chemical extraction or separation that are part of the analysis method. The preparative steps could also be described in a separate method.[1]


  1. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (6 July 2011). "SEDD Specification 5.2 Resources". Retrieved 20 May 2014.