Chemical analysis

Our up to date facilities for chemical analysis of water and solid extractions include: a continuous flow auto-analyser for the determination of phosphate, nitrite, total oxidisable nitrogen and ammonia; an Inductively Coupled Plasma Optical Emission Spectrophotometer (ICP-OES) is capable of the simultaneous analysis of metals and cations; a gas chromatograph is available for the determination of greenhouse gases; the GC-MS fitted with a pyrolyser unit is capable of measuring a wide range of organic analytes; thermal combustion units are capable of measuring carbon, nitrogen, hydrogen & sulphur in solids and total and inorganic carbon in liquids; UV/Vis spectrophotometers are generally used for the measurement of water colour.


Continuous flow auto-analyser: Two Skalar San++ colorimetric auto-analyser allow the determination of nitrite, total oxidised nitrogen, ammonia and phosphate to sub-ppm levels in natural waters and a range of extracts, along with other determinands (such as silica and aluminium) if required. 

Elemental thermal oxidation analysis: The Analytik Jena Multi N/C 2100 and 2100C combustion analysers are suitable for the determination of carbon (total, total inorganic and non-purgeable organic carbon) in aqueous samples to ppm levels. 
The Elementar vario MICRO cube is suitable for the routine determination of carbon and nitrogen in solid samples such as soil and plant material; it is also possible to determine hydrogen and sulphur. Analytical range is typically from 100 ppm to percent levels. 

Gas chromatograph - greenhouse gas analyser: This instrument is an Agilent 7890A, equipped for injection of gas samples from a wide range of sample containers, but routinely from 12 ml pre-evacuated vials. The instrument has a methaniser/flame ionisation detector, and electron capture detector, and is set up to quantify carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide. 

Ion chromatograph (IC): The Dionex ICS-3000 chromatograph is currently set up for measuring a range of anions (normally at ppm levels) in natural waters and aqueous soil extracts. The microbore system is fitted with a 100 position temperature-controlled autosampler, eluent generator, quaternary pump, temperature-controlled column compartment and conductivity and UV detectors. Typical determinations are chloride, nitrate and sulphate in water. The system is capable of being set up for other determinands including low molecular weight organic acids.  We have just taken delivery of an ICS-5000+ which also has the ability to measure cations (Ca, Mg, Na, K, NH4). 

Inductively coupled plasma - Optical emission spectrophotometer (ICP-OES): The Thermo Scientific iCAP7600 ICP-OES, equipped with a 240-position Cetac auto-sampler, is a simultaneous analyser with the capability to view in axial or radial mode. It provides fairly rapid multi-elemental analysis of a range of materials from low ppb to percent levels. It is typically used to measure alkali metals and transition metals in water samples and soil extracts. 



Garstang Building Level 8 & 9

Members of staff

Dr Jonathan Carrivick