Determination of Mercury in Drinking Water by Inductively Coupled Plasma Atomic Emission Spectrometry with Electrothermal Vaporization

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Abstract:

The determination of mercury at the ng/mL level is needed in clinical, environmental, and occupational hygiene studies. The cold vapor atomic absorption technique for the determination of mercury in water is applied widely. An alternative approach is electrothermal atomization atomic absorption spectrophotometry (ETAAAS). The major limitation of this latter technique results from the extreme volatility of mercury, and a significant loss is observed when one is drying a mercury salt solution in ETA-AAS. Ediger reduced mercury volatility by thermal stabilization with ammonium sulfide. Halász et al. compared sodium sulfide and dithizone as mercury stabilizing agents to find that in the presence of dithizone higher charring temperatures were usable. Recently Takla and Valijanian extracted mercury with dithizone, and the mercury-containing extract samples were dried and ashed prior to atomization at up to 250°C without loss. Lapanja et al. searched for stabilizing reagents for mercury and investigated the atomization of organic mercury chelates. The thermal decomposition product of these stabilizing reagents was HgS.

Keywords: Drinking water, mercury determination; Electrothermal vaporization, electrothermal atomizer; Inductively coupled plasma

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1366/0003702854248467

Affiliations: 1: Department of Chemistry, GRC Towers, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Massachusetts 01003-0035; on leave from Technical University of Poznań, Department of Analytical Chemistry, 60-965 Poznań, Poland 2: Department of Chemistry, GRC Towers, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Massachusetts 01003-0035; on leave from L. Eötvös University, Institute of Inorganic and Analytical Chemistry, P.O. Box 123, H-1443 Budapest, Hungary 3: Department of Chemistry, GRC Towers, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Massachusetts 01003-0035

Publication date: May 1, 1985

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