Analytical Instrumentation

  • Real-time Determination of Anions and Cations in Aerosols by Ion Chromatography

Real-time Determination of Anions and Cations in Aerosols by Ion Chromatography

Oct 16 2008

Research on air pollution requires rapid and accurate measurements of inorganic species in ambient air.
Coupling a Particle-Into-Liquid-Sampler (PILS) to Metrohm’s 850 Professional IC allows for quasicontinuous measurements with an unpre-cedented temporal resolution of just 5 to 15 minutes.
The determination of anions and cations in atmospheric aerosols yields essential information concerning atmospheric transport and transformation processes. Until now these determinations have been
carried out using filters. However, this method only allows one to determine averages over a time span of 24 hours or even more. Moreover, the results can be compromised by desorption processes and chemical
transformations.
In contrast to sampling devices relying on filters, using a PILS allows semi-continuous sampling of aerosols downstream from a denuder system. Subsequent to the removal of interfering gas-phase species, the remaining aerosol particles are dissolved into water phase by means of supersaturated steam. Eventually, the liquid sample is transported to the IC for analysis. The key benefit of this method is a high temporal resolution of measurements of just 5 to 15 minutes. Changes in the
ionic composition of ambient air can thus be recorded almost immediately allowing a much more precise correlation with meteorological and other data.

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