Plants

We can perform elemental analyses on plant samples including forage vegetation, and crops from root vegetables through to wheat, rice and maize grains.

Trace and major elements capability

The facility has two inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) instruments, one Agilent 7500 (UKAS accredited for aqueous samples to ISO 17025) and a Spectro Array ICP-MS.

We have capability for:

  • high throughput survey scale analyses of 55 elements, plus iodine using a TMAH matrix
  • low volume analyses (< 5ml, including IC, pH/Alk, NPOC)
  • elemental speciation of arsenic, chromium and selenium using high performance liquid chromatography ICP-MS
  • isotope ratio analyses for uranium (e.g. DU) and lead (provenancing)

In addition, we have one inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectroscopy (ICP-AES) instrument for high total dissolved solids solutions.

Gamma emitting isotopes capability

Natural daughter products from uranium and thorium decay, such as 210Pb, may be used as environmental tracers. Occasionally anthropogenic processes such as oil or gas extraction may pre-concentrate these to hazardous levels i.e. radium in barium sulphate-rich brines. Some of these may be measured using our Canberra Broad Energy germanium gamma spectrometers.

Certain artificial isotopes may be found in our environment or industrial processes due to past nuclear releases i.e. 137Cs from atmospheric bomb tests or 60Co from steel irradiation. Some of these may be measured using our Canberra Broad Energy germanium gamma spectrometers.

Contact

Please contact Michael Watts, Charles Gowing or Simon Chenery for further information.