Trace elemental analysis of automotive paints by laser ablation–inductively coupled plasma–mass spectrometry (LA–ICP–MS)

Hobbs, Andria L.; Almirall, José R.
August 2003
Analytical & Bioanalytical Chemistry;Aug2003, Vol. 376 Issue 8, p1265
Academic Journal
Paints and coatings are frequently encountered as types of materials that are submitted to forensic science laboratories as a result of trace evidence transfers. The aim of this study was to develop a method to complement the commonly used techniques in a forensic laboratory in order to better characterize these samples for forensic purposes. A laser ablation method has been used to simultaneously sample several layers directly prior to introduction into an inductively coupled plasma–mass spectrometer for the detection and quantification of the trace metals present in the layer(s). Time-resolved analysis plots displaying the elemental response and quantification of selected metals are compared to associate/discriminate paint samples. Matrix-matched standards were successfully incorporated into the analysis scheme for quantification of lead in the solid paint samples. Preparation of new matrix-matched standards for quantification of additional elements developed for this study are also presented. A sample set of eighteen (18) survey automotive paint samples have been analyzed with the developed method in order to determine the utility of LA–ICP–MS for trace element analysis of paints.


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