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Analysis of sulfur-containing compounds in ambient air using solid-phase microextraction and gas chromatography with pulsed flame photometric detection

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A new analysis method for sulfur-containing compounds in air using solid-phase microextraction (SPME), gas chromatography and pulsed flame photometric detection (PFPD), SPME-GC-PFPD method, has been developed. The analysis method is simple, fast and easily performed. To demonstrate the usefulness and versatility of the method air samples collected in geothermal areas in Rotorua, at a muddy beach in Auckland (cities in New Zealand), and in a wastewater treatment plant were analysed. COS, H2S, CS2, SO2, CH3SH, (CH3)2S and CH3(CH2)2CH2SH were identified in the samples from Rotorua. It was noted that air quality in residential areas with respect to sulfur compounds was better than that around geothermal sources. Samples from the wastewater treatment plant contained COS, H2S, CS2, SO2, CH3SH, (CH3)2S and (CH3)2S2. It was found that the emission of sulfur compounds was reduced in the course of the wastewater treatment process. The potential impact of the detected sulfur compounds on human health is briefly discussed.
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Keywords: Air sampling bag; PFPD; SPME; Sulfur compounds

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Chemistry University of Auckland New Zealand 2: School of Geography and Environmental Science University of Auckland New Zealand

Publication date: August 1, 2004

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