To support the effectiveness of the Minamata Convention, the accurate determinations of mercury (Hg) in natural waters is an important but certainly challenging task due to the low concentrations expected in ambient samples. Mercury contamination may occur from many sources such as the unproperly-cleaning of storage bottles or the use of reagents for sample analysis with Hg traces, thus leading the analyst to easily run into errors. In our work, we propose some key modifications to the United States Environmental Protection Agency(EPA) method 1631E aimed at reducing the Hg contamination of reagents, storage containers, and minimizing the carryover effect in the instrumental line of sampling. The changes introduced have been tailored for the use of the method with cold vapor atomic fluorescence spectroscopy (CV-AFS) instrumentation and tested as part of a United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) ring test. Although the edited method was tested with natural water samples, the proposed method improvements can also apply to the Hg analysis in solid matrices that require the prior acid digestion of the samples.•A customized version of the EPA method 1631E is proposed for the analysis of aqueous samples.•New protocols for the reduction of contamination in the storage bottles and reagents used for the preparation of BrCl solution are provided.•A useful strategy for the control of the memory effect is included.

Modification of the EPA method 1631E for the quantification of total mercury in natural waters

Naccarato, Attilio
2020

Abstract

To support the effectiveness of the Minamata Convention, the accurate determinations of mercury (Hg) in natural waters is an important but certainly challenging task due to the low concentrations expected in ambient samples. Mercury contamination may occur from many sources such as the unproperly-cleaning of storage bottles or the use of reagents for sample analysis with Hg traces, thus leading the analyst to easily run into errors. In our work, we propose some key modifications to the United States Environmental Protection Agency(EPA) method 1631E aimed at reducing the Hg contamination of reagents, storage containers, and minimizing the carryover effect in the instrumental line of sampling. The changes introduced have been tailored for the use of the method with cold vapor atomic fluorescence spectroscopy (CV-AFS) instrumentation and tested as part of a United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) ring test. Although the edited method was tested with natural water samples, the proposed method improvements can also apply to the Hg analysis in solid matrices that require the prior acid digestion of the samples.•A customized version of the EPA method 1631E is proposed for the analysis of aqueous samples.•New protocols for the reduction of contamination in the storage bottles and reagents used for the preparation of BrCl solution are provided.•A useful strategy for the control of the memory effect is included.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11770/335136
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