Topic Group 3

Atomic Spectrometry Update – review of advances in atomic spectrometry and related techniques

This review covers advances in atomic spectrometric techniques, including atomic emission, absorption, fluorescence and mass spectrometry. Material on speciation and coupled techniques is not covered as this is included in a seperate ASU review.

Writing team –

E. Hywel Evans

Clare M. M. Smith

Jorge Pisonero

Rex N. Taylor

Latest issue: J. Anal. At. Spectrom., 2018,33, 684-705

This review of 166 references covers developments in ‘Atomic Spectrometry’ published in the twelve months from November 2016 to November 2017 inclusive. It covers atomic emission, absorption, fluorescence and mass spectrometry, but excludes material on speciation and coupled techniques which is included in a separate review. It should be read in conjunction with the previous review and the other related reviews in the series. A critical approach to the selection of material has been adopted, with only novel developments in instrumentation, techniques and methodology being included. Novel trends are evenly spread across the techniques this year, with no single ‘bandwagon’ rolling ahead of the rest. The most significant development seems to be the advance of 2D and 3D imaging using LA-ICP-MS, and the challenges associated with how to process the large amounts of data produced. In this context, there were some useful reports of user-friendly software for imaging large datasets and methods of compressed sensing to reduce the amount of data in the first place. Single particle analysis using ICP-MS is now well established in the literature which, as well as being a useful technique for particle analysis in its own right, it also offer interesting insights into the mechanisms of atomisation and ionisation in the ICP. New methods of vapour generation using a plasma as both vapour generation and excitation/ionisation cell show some promise for the analysis of single drops of solution using a relatively simple, miniaturised instrumental set-up. Methods for IR-ICP-MS of non-radiogenic isotopes continues to grow, with more elements being added to the list in this review period.