Novel application of the electrolyte cathode atmospheric glow discharge: Atomic absorption spectrometry studies

Krisztina György, László Bencs, Pál Mezei, Tamás Cserfalvi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Citations (Scopus)


The analytical characteristics of a capillary design of the electrolyte cathode atmospheric glow discharge (ELCAD), operated with a W-rod anode at a discharge current of 70 mA and a discharge voltage of 950 V, were exploited through spatially resolved atomic absorption spectrometry (AAS) experiments. For this purpose, the ELCAD cell, placed on a platform adjustable with micrometer screws, was inserted into the optical path of a commercial line-source AAS instrument. A flow injection system was developed and applied to introduce 3 mL of aqueous standards of a set of environmentally relevant metals (Ca, Cd, Cr, Cu, Na, Pb and Zn) into the plasma. The analyte atom distribution along the vertical axis of the conically-shaped ELCAD plasma (height: 3.5 mm) is element specific. All the absorbance maxima are observed in the near cathode region (e.g., in the range of 0.5-1.0 mm from the cathode), while the AA signal smoothly fades towards the anode. Several spectrochemical buffers (citric acid, EDTA, chlorides of Ca, Cs, La, Li, and Na) were studied for improving the sensitivity of the AAS determinations for Cr. A significant increase in the sensitivity (20%) was found only with the addition of 0.55% (m/v) La solution. The limit of detection data for Cd, Cu, Na and Zn are 3.4, 4.2, 9.2 and 0.9 mg L - 1, respectively. The AAS calibration curves for Cd, Cu, Na and Zn are linear up to 75, 200, 100 and 25 mg L - 1, respectively.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)52-57
Number of pages6
JournalSpectrochimica Acta - Part B Atomic Spectroscopy
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2012


  • Atmospheric plasma
  • Atomic absorption spectrometry
  • Heavy metal monitoring
  • Solution cathode
  • Spatially resolved analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Instrumentation
  • Spectroscopy

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Novel application of the electrolyte cathode atmospheric glow discharge: Atomic absorption spectrometry studies'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this