Metals Analysis

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The term metals analysis for the Beaver Run Project is used to denote the identification and quantitation of several dissolved metallic atoms and/or cations[1] originating from natural or man-made inorganic solids such as salts or minerals. For this analysis, we use inductively coupled plasma-optical emission spectroscopy (ICP-OES).

General Method

  • A small sample (~15 mL) of acidified sample (see Sample Processing) is filtered through a 0.45- syringe filter and placed in a sample test tube.[2]
  • The test tube is placed in the autosampler rack of the instrument (cap removed).
  • The analysis is automated by computer, and each sample that is processed requires ~5 min to complete.[3]
  • In addition to the samples, there are several other test tubes present during an anlaysis for quality assurance, including blanks, duplicates, method blanks, and fortified lab blanks.

The following metal species are analyzed:

Comments and Interpretation of Results

...coming soon


  1. A cation is a positively-charged ion of an element.
  2. Current sample test tubes for salts and metals analyses are 11-mL plastic centrifuge tubes.
  3. A complete metals analysis requires the sample is analyzed twice (six metals tested per test tube).

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