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Sample Size: 30-50 mL


Samples are acidified with concentrated nitric acid (HNO3) then analyzed by Inductively Coupled Plasma - Optical Emission Spectrometry (ICP-OES) and Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry (ICP-MS).

Method 39 Elements and Reporting Limits
Element Concentration (low) Concentration (high)
Ag, Silver 0.02 ppb
Al, Aluminum 1 ppb
As, Arsenic 1 ppb
Au, Gold 0.01 ppb
B, Boron 5 ppb
Ba, Barium 0.01 ppb
Be, Beryllium 0.05 ppb
Bi, Bismuth 0.005 ppb
Ca, Calcium 50 ppb
Cd, Cadmium 0.002 ppb
Ce, Cerium 0.01 ppb
Co, Cobalt 0.01 ppb
Cr, Chromium 0.02 ppb
Cs, Cesium 0.01 ppb
Cu, Copper 0.1 ppb
Fe, Iron 20 ppb
Ga, Gallium 0.01 ppb
Ge, Germanium 0.05 ppb
Hf, Hafnium 0.01 ppb
Hg, Mercury 0.2 ppb
In, Indium 0.01 ppb
K, Potassium 100 ppb
La, Lanthanum 0.001 ppb
Li, Lithium 0.01 ppb
Mg, Magnesium 1 ppb
Mn, Manganese 0.05 ppb
Mo, Molybdenum 0.01 ppb
Na, Sodium 10 ppb
Nb, Niobium 0.01 ppb
Ni, Nickel 0.1 ppb
P, Phosphorous 100 ppb
Pb, Lead 0.01 ppb
Rb, Rubidium 0.01 ppb
Re, Rhenium 0.01 ppb
S, Sulfur 20 ppb
Sb, Antimony 5 ppb
Sc, Scandium 0.2 ppb
Se, Selenium 0.5 ppb
Sn, Tin 0.02 ppb
Sr, Strontium 0.01 ppb
Ta, Tantalum 0.05 ppb
Te, Tellurium 0.01 ppb
Th, Thorium 0.1 ppb
Ti, Titanium 0.1 ppb
Tl, Thallium 0.005 ppb
U, Uranium 0.001 ppb
V, Vanadium 0.05 ppb
W, Tungsten 0.02 ppb
Y, Yttrium 0.01 ppb
Zn, Zinc 1 ppb
Zr, Zirconium 0.05 ppb

Analytical Performance

Data will be deemed acceptable if recovery of each element is ±15% at five times the Lower Limit of Determination (LOD) and the calculated Relative Standard Deviation (RSD) of duplicate samples is no greater than 15%.

Project Contact

Jaime Azain
Phone: 303-236-9376
Central Mineral and Environmental Resources Science Center

Mineral Resources Program Science Priority

The use of firm, trade, and brand names is for identification purposes only and does not constitute endorsement by the U.S. government.

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