Study of particle size influence on laser ablation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry using an in-line cascade impactor
An in-line cascade impactor was used as a low pass filter to study the effects of particles on inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) performance. The temporal relative standard deviation (TRSD), which represents the short term internal precision during repetitive ablation, was improved from 20% to 4% by removing large particles ablated from brass alloys. External precision for spot to spot measurements on a bulk sample was improved to approximately 2%. The ablated aerosol chemistry was particle size dependent: smaller particles were zinc rich while larger particles were copper rich.