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A number of classical methods for the determination of beryllium are described in the literature. Gravimetric methods in which beryllium is weighed as the oxide or the pyrophosphate are employed for relatively pure materials, but careful separation of interfering elements is required. A useful volumetric method is based upon the precipitation of beryllium hydroxide, addition of fluoride to complex beryllium, and titration of the liberated hydroxide; but this method is also subject to many interferences. Spectrophotometric reagents, such as aluminon and p-nitrophenylazoorcinol, and fluorometric reagents, such as morin, have been used to determine beryllium: but for most applications atomic emission spectrometry and atomic absorption spectrophotometry have replaced these methods. The emission of neutrons by gamma-irradiated beryllium is the basis for a rapid, relatively interference-free beryllium analyzer, which requires minimal sample preparation and may be used for practically any matrix.
beryllium, determination, gravimetric analysis, volumetric analysis, spectrophotometric analysis, fluorometric analysis, atomic absorption, emission, plasma emission, spectrometric analysis, separation
Senior chemist, Brush Wellman Inc., Elmore, OH