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Inductively Coupled Plasma Optical Emission Spectroscopy (ICP-OES)

Inductively Coupled Plasma Optical Emission Spectroscopy (ICP-OES Analysis) Testing Technique

ICP-OES is a trace-level, elemental analysis technique that uses the emission spectra of a sample to identify, and quantify the elements present.

Samples are introduced into the plasma in a process that desolvates, ionises, and excites them.  The constituent elements can be identified by their characteristic emission lines, and quantified by the intensity of the same lines.

  • High sample throughput enabling the efficient analysis of large batches
  • Simultaneous determination of multiple elements in each sample
  • Complementary analysis to techniques like XRF
  • Large dynamic linear range
  • Low chemical and matrix interference effects.

Typical Applications

  • Trace analysis of environmental soil and water samples
  • Assessment of metal ores for mass balances and process control
  • Trace metal analysis of any material that can be digested into an aqueous matrix
  • Boron and Lithia in glasses
  • Forensic analysis
  • Trace analysis of food and drink samples such as; metals in wine; and elements bound to proteins
  • Metal release testing of tableware.

Typical Industries using ICP-OES

  • Environmental testing
  • Food and drinks
  • Materials
  • Minerals
  • Glass, ceramics and refractories
  • Healthcare.



ICP-OES - At a Glance

  • Information: Trace analysis of samples by emission at specific wavelengths
  • Sample Size: Limited only by the requirement to digest the samples
  • Detection Limits: ppm (mg/kg) level
  • Elements Detected: B-U
  • Data Output: Elemental concentrations, scans across individual peaks


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