Ultratrace-level radium-226 determination in seawater samples by isotope dilution inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry

Varga, Zsolt
January 2008
Analytical & Bioanalytical Chemistry;Jan2008, Vol. 390 Issue 2, p511
Academic Journal
An improved and novel sample preparation method for 226Ra determination in liquid samples by isotope dilution inductively coupled plasma sector field mass spectrometry using laboratory-prepared 228Ra tracer has been developed. The procedure involves a selective preconcentration achieved by applying laboratory-prepared MnO2 resin followed by cation exchange chromatographic separation. In order to completely eliminate possible molecular interferences, medium mass resolution ( R = 4,000) combined with chemical separation was found to be a good compromise that enhanced the reliability of the method. The detection limit of 0.084 fg g−1 (3.1 mBq kg−1) achieved is comparable to that of the emanation method or alpha spectrometry and is suitable for low-level environmental measurements. The chemical recovery of the sample preparation method ranged from 72 to 94%. The proposed method enables a rapid, accurate and less labor-intensive approach to routine environmental 226Ra determination than the radioanalytical techniques conventionally applied.


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