Volume 50, Issue 6 (November 2005)
Development and Evaluation of a Standard Method for the Quantitative Determination of Elements in Float Glass Samples by LA-ICP-MS
Forensic analysis of glass samples was performed in different laboratories within the NITE-CRIME (Natural Isotopes and Trace Elements in Criminalistics and Environmental Forensics) European Network, using a variety of Laser Ablation Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS) systems. The main objective of the interlaboratory tests was to cross-validate the different combinations of laser ablation systems with different ICP-MS instruments. A first study using widely available samples, such as the NIST SRM 610 and NIST SRM 612 reference glasses, led to deviations in the determined concentrations for trace elements amongst the laboratories up to 60%. Extensive discussion among the laboratories and the production of new glass reference standards (FGS 1 and FGS 2) established an improved analytical protocol, which was tested on a well-characterized float glass sample (FG 10-1 from the BKA Wiesbaden collection). Subsequently, interlaboratory tests produced improved results for nearly all elements with a deviation of <10%, demonstrating that LA-ICP-MS can deliver absolute quantitative measurements on major, minor and trace elements in float glass samples for forensic and other purposes.