Steel manufacturers conduct quality control testing for a range of metals and trace elements to ensure the grade and performance of their final product. The Standardization Administration of China uses their GB/T 20125-2006 standard “Low-alloy steel – Determination of multi-element contents – Inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectrometric method” to control the quality of manufactured steel products. Different grades of steel have different specifications for elemental content, with most steel and stainless steel grades required to have less than 0.05 % by weight of Sulfur and 0.04 % by weight of Phosphorus. With the Inductively Coupled Plasma Optical Emission Spectroscopy (ICP-OES) technique easily able to measure elements at this concentration within a sample, laboratories are looking beyond whether an instrument can ‘do the job’ to whether a specific instrument can improve their sample throughput, lower their costs, simplify sample preparation and instrument operation, and deliver reliable results throughout the analysis of a large batch of samples. 2 This application note demonstrates the performance and benefits of Agilent’s 5100 Vertical Dual View (VDV) ICP-OES instrument in the analysis of steel samples, using the GB/T 20125-2006 method. The instrument offers many advantages for this application, which involves the rapid analysis of a large number of challenging steel samples.