USGS Test Method I-1901

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Method Name:
Zinc, dissolved, graphite furnace. Official Name: Zinc, atomic absorption spectrometric, graphite furnace

Zinc is determined by atomic absorption spectrometry in conjunction with a graphite furnace containing a graphite platform (Hinderberger and others, 1981). A sample is placed on the graphite platform and a matrix modifier is added. The sample is then evaporated to dryness, charred, and atomized using high-temperature ramping. The absorption signal generated during atomization is recorded and compared with standards.

This method may be used to determine zinc in low ionic-strength water and precipitation. With Zeeman background correction and a 20-uL sample, the method is applicable in the range from 0.5 to 40 ug/L. Sample solutions that contain zinc concentrations exceeding the upper limits must be diluted or preferably be analyzed by the atomic absorption spectrometric method, or by the atomic emission spectrometry ICP method.The analytical range and detection limits can be increased or possibly decreased by varying the volume of sample injected or the instrumental settings. Purification of reagents and use of ASTM Type 1 water (Method D-1193, American Society for Testing and Materials, 1984) may result in lower detection limits.

Methods for the Determination of Inorganic Substances in Water and Fluvial Sediments, Techniques of Water-Resources Investigations of the United States Geological Survey, Book 5, Chapter A1 Edited by Marvin J. Fishman and Linda C. Friedman

Interferences in low ionic-strength samples, such as precipitation, normally are quite low. In addition, the use of the graphite platform reduces the effects of many interferences. Calcium (25 mg/L), magnesium (8 mg/L), sodium (20 mg/L), sulfate (34 mg/L), and chloride (25 mg/L) do not interfere. Greater concentrations of these constituents were not investigated.Precipitation samples usually contain very low concentrations of zinc. Special precautionary measures must be employed during both sample collection and laboratory determination to prevent contamination.

QC Requirements:
Calibrate instrument using calibration standards (CAL); quality control samples (QCS); and laboratory blanks (LB) analyzed at a minimum of 1 for every 10 samples.

Maximum Holding Time:
180 days



0.5 to 40 ug/L

Single operator precision and accuracy determined on six replicates of 5.5 ug/L zinc in deionized water.

Reporting Level defined as smallest measured concentration of a constituent that may be reliably reported using a given analytical method.

Revision Number:

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Analytical testing dots