EGU General Assembly 2007
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  Information - SC1 High-Resolution Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (ICP-MS) presented by Isaac B. Brenner (Israel) and Meike Hamester (Germany) (co-listed in IG & GI)

Event Information
Registration for the short course still is possible during the EGU General Assembly in Vienna, from Monday to Thursday, A subscription list will be placed on one of the boards in the main entrance hall of the Austria Conference Centre. There will be a maximum limit of participants for the short course, and if that number (not probable, however) will be reached, 'first come - first served' will be applied.

The short course is presented by:
Isaac B. Brenner
9 Dishon Street
Malkha, Jerusalem, 96956
Meike Hamester
Hanna-Kunath-Str. 11
Thermo Electron
28199 Bremen

Although Inductively Coupled Plasma Quadrupole Mass Spectrometry (ICP-QMS) is a well established technique for multitrace element determinations, it has limitations due to plasma and matrix derived spectroscopic interferences that result in degradation of detection limits and incorrect analytical results. Therefore unambiguous separation of analyte ions from spectroscopic interferences is a prerequisite of accurate and precise elemental analysis.

Several strategies have been employed to reduce these interference effects: correction equations, front-end sample introduction, plasma optimization, matrix separation, collision and reaction cells and high resolution magnetic sector ICP-MS (HR-ICP-MS). However, because preconcentration procedures are tedious and contamination prone and cell conditions (gases, and flow rates) are highly variable, a high resolution ICP-MS is needed in order to mass-separate the numerous interferences and allow reliable quantification of the isotopes of interest. (The more complex the matrix, the more interferences are to be expected).

In this short course we will focus on the application of HR magnetic sector ICP and glow discharge (GD) MS for determination of low analyte concentrations in solutions and solid samples. After reviewing the current status of instrumentation, methods development strategies in high and in low resolution modes will be detailed. For example, direct analysis of seawater, industrial brines, pure chemicals, complex geological samples such as Pt, Zr, Cr, Ni rich ores and refinery products, hazardous wastes and nuclear forensics using conventional sample and advanced sample introduction strategies.

Complex metals and chemically refractive alloys cannot be readily decomposed for multielement analysis. GD-MS overcomes the necessity of employing tedious digestion procedures and allows even subppb concentrations to be determined for direct bulk and surface analysis of complex metals and high technological alloys.

Comparison with alternate techniques such as collision and reaction cells will be made using conventional figures of merit such as REAL limits of detection, sample throughput, sample preparation requirements, ease of use and cost per analysis.
In making a critical comparison with collision and reaction cells, the following pragmatic questions will be addressed: In what way is HR Magnetic Sector ICP-MS better than collision and reaction cells? Is high mass resolution the universal means for reducing spectroscopic interferences and for taking full benefit of the multielement capability and isotopic analysis of mass spectrometry using ICP and glow discharge.

This short course will be of great value to laboratory and industrial production managers, research chemists and both new and practicing chemists in the environmental, geological, metallurgical, semiconductor, hazardous wastes, nuclear technology and forensics. In particular the sections on glow discharge will be valuable to all those involved in quality control of refractory materials and characterization of surfaces especially in failure analysis. They will be find a vast knowledge on direct solids analysis. The course will be of particular value for decision making processes.

Preliminary List of Solicited Speakers


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