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Journal of Automatic Chemistry
Volume 15 (1993), Issue 2, Pages 37-45

Computerized data treatment for an HPLC-GFAAS system for the identification and quantification of trace element compounds

Institut für Analytische Chemie, Karl-Franzens Universität, Universitätsplatz 1, Graz A-8010, Austria

Copyright © 1993 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Liquid chromatographs, coupled with graphite furnace atomic absorption spectrometers, have been widely used for the identification and quantification of trace element compounds. The quantification of the discontinuous signals from the spectrometer defining a chromatographic band is very much a matter of judgement and therefore prone to error. This paper describes a system which links a high-performance liquid chromatograph via a ‘Brinckman’ flowthrough cup to a Hitachi Zeeman graphite furnace atomic absorption spectrometer equipped with an autosampler. The introduction of aliquots from the column effluent and the analysis sequence is computer-controlled through a home-built interface. The signals from the spectrometer are passed through an analoguedigital converter and processed by selectable algorithms. The software offers a variety of options for processing the chromatographic data, such as data smoothing, Gaussian or spline interpolation, and trapezium or Simpson integration.

This system was used to separate and determine selenite and selenate in aqueous solution with absolute detection limits (3 σ) of 23 ng Se for selenite and 16 ng Se for selenate. This system can be adapted to other spectrometers, provided that the required connections to the electronics can be made.