Laser ablation for the introduction of solid samples into an inductively coupled plasma for atomic-emission spectrometry
A laser-inductively coupled plasma microprobe has been assembled from commercially available instruments, viz., a laser microprobe and an inductively coupled plasma source optical-emission spectrometer (ICP), together with a simply constructed sample chamber and a light-activated switch. The purpose of the combination was the volatilisation of solid samples into the plasma. The system was tested with a series of standard steel samples, which produced linear calibrations for a range of elements. The absolute detection limits obtained were comparable to those obtained with solution nebulisation on the same ICP and the precision was good for elements homogeneously distributed in the sample. Initial work on calibration for silicate rocks was undertaken.