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ERIC Number: EJ1002583
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Aug
Pages: 4
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 9
ISSN: ISSN-0021-9584
Environmental Indicators of Metal Pollution and Emission: An Experiment for the Instrumental Analysis Laboratory
Bowden, John A.; Nocito, Brian A.; Lowers, Russell H.; Guillette, Louis J., Jr.; Williams, Kathryn R.; Young, Vaneica Y.
Journal of Chemical Education, v89 n8 p1057-1060 Aug 2012
This experiment enlightens students on the use of environmental indicators and inductively coupled plasma-atomic emission spectroscopy (ICP-AES) and demonstrates the ability of these monitoring tools to measure metal deposition in environmental samples (both as a result of lab-simulated and real events). In this two-part study, the initial experiment is designed to simulate the metal pollutants that originate from sparklers (small-scale fireworks). Two environmental indicators, surface water and Spanish moss ("Tillandsia usneoides"), are exposed to a lit sparkler in a closed container. The Spanish moss is subsequently microwave digested, and both samples are analyzed for 16 elements by ICP-AES. In part two, the metal content is analyzed in real samples taken from the environment (topsoil and surface water) surrounding the Kennedy Space Center (KSC) launch pads before and after a shuttle launch. Students learn several fundamental concepts including atomic spectroscopy, biomonitoring, microwave digestion, matrix interferences, matrix-matching, detection limits, and the standard additions method. (Contains 2 tables and 3 figures.)
Division of Chemical Education, Inc and ACS Publications Division of the American Chemical Society. 1155 Sixteenth Street NW, Washington, DC 20036. Tel: 800-227-5558; Tel: 202-872-4600; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A