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

Simon Branch (Referee)

Jorge Pisonero

Rex N. Taylor

Latest issue: J. Anal. At. Spectrom., 2020,35, 830-851

This review of 155 references covers developments in ‘Atomic Spectrometry’ published in the twelve months from November 2018 to November 2019 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. The common atomic spectrometric techniques such as FAAS, GFAAS, ICP-OES and ICP-MS have reached a level of maturity such that there are fewer novel developments. Exceptions to this are: the continued development of single particle and single cell analysis by ICP-MS; advances in miniaturised sources for vapour and liquid sample introduction; and coupling compact sources with ion trap and TOF mass spectrometers. New developments in LIBS were less pronounced this year, but there were some interesting couplings of the technique with other instrumentation such as QMS, RAMAN and acoustic spectroscopy. LA-MC-ICP-MS was the predominant technique to push the boundaries of isotope ratio analysis by lowering LODs, increasing precision and accuracy, and measuring smaller samples. Another advance was the progress of high-impedance resistors (1012 Ω and 1013 Ω) from the research lab into useful applications, with solutions being found to address the slow response times of their amplifiers resulting in their useful incorporation into the multi-collector arrays for the detection of minor isotopes.