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The echelle spectrograph, with a direct current plasma jet as the emission source, is used to solve some common analytical problems. The instrument replaces atomic absorption when burner blockage becomes a problem and also when methyl isobutyl ketone (MIBK) must be used with a nitrous oxide (N2O) flame. The system is also shown to be more applicable to analysis than the direct reading emission spectrograph when sample variations are considered.
To ensure a basic understanding of the instrument, its differences and similarities to both atomic absorption and emission spectroscopy are compared. These comparisons are intended for problem solving and are limited to the instrumentation available in this laboratory.
echelle spectrograph, direct current plasma, atomic absorption, emission spectroscopy
Analytical supervisor, Kawecki Berylco Industries, Inc., Boyertown, Pa.