Plasma Chemistry Laboratory

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List of Services

Element Analysis

Inductively Coupled Plasma Optical Emission Spectrometry (ICP-OES)

  • Analysis of solutions or dissolved solids
  • Quantitative determination of 20 to 27 elements simultaneously
  • Detection limits in the parts-per-million (ppm) to higher parts-per-billion (ppb) ranges
  • Requires a minimum sample of 2 ml

Typical applications: Sample types previously processed include wooden boards, plant tissue, soils, proteins, bones, human tissue, fish, snails, clams, wastewater, and ocean water

If your target analytes are predominately in the ppb range then you will need to consider ICP-MS. When in doubt contact us.

VG Plasma Quad 3 Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry (ICP-MS)

  • Analysis of solutions or dissolved solids
  • Rapid, multi-elemental analysis capability covering most elements in the periodic table
  • Detection limits in the parts-per-billion (ppb) to upper parts-per-trillion (ppt) range
  • Requires a minimum sample of 2 ml

Typical applications: To date, our lab has used this method to analyze transition metals proteins (e.g., Zn, Fe, Mn, Cr, etc.), soil, water and plant samples. Other applications include detection of trace elements in a wide variety of aqueous matrices (drinking water, river, lake and ground water, waste water and effluent, and seawater) in solids after digestion (sediment, soil, sludge, road dust, air particulate matter, plant tissue and grain, rocks and minerals, etc.) and in samples of body fluids (blood, plasma, and urine)


High Precision Isotopis Ratios

Nu Instruments NP II HRMC ICPMS

  • Isotopic analyses of solutions or dissolved solids
  • very high precision for most isotopic systems
  • Requires a minimum sample of 2 ml
  • Typical isotopes measured include Pb, Sr, U/Th, Li, Hf, Nd


Carbon, Hydrogen, and Nitrogen Analysis

Rapid, simultaneous determination of total carbon, hydrogen and nitrogen content of non-aqueous samples

  • Requires 1-3 mg of dry, ground plant or animal tissue and 200 mg of dry 18-40 mesh soils
  • Instrumentation: Perkin-Elmer 2400 Carbon, Hydrogen, Nitrogen Analyzer (CHN)

Typical applications: plants, soils, forestry, water, crystalline compounds, seston, complex carbohydrates, and plastics

Nutrient Analysis

Available chemistries are ammonia, chloride, nitrite, sulfate, ortho phosphate, alkalinity, total nitrogen and total phosphorus.

  • Requires a 25 ml sample
  • Instrumentation: Braun+Luebbe Auto Analyzer II Continuous Flow System

Typical applications: water, wastewater

Other Services

Other equipment includes a microwave digestion system, a freeze-dryer for lyophilizing tissue, and a jar mill for grinding samples for low-level metal analysis. The laboratory uses several EPA-approved and AOAC methods for preparation and analysis.

For further information contact the CAIS Plasma Chemistry Laboratory (706) 542-1395