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Anal Chem. 2012 Apr 17;84(8):3640-5. doi: 10.1021/ac3000489. Epub 2012 Apr 4.

Determination of the hydrogen isotopic compositions of organic materials and hydrous minerals using thermal combustion laser spectroscopy.

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Environment Canada, Saskatoon, SK, Canada.


Hydrogen isotopic compositions of hydrous minerals and organic materials were measured by combustion to water, followed by optical isotopic analysis of the water vapor by off-axis integrated cavity output spectroscopy. Hydrogen and oxygen isotopic compositions were calculated by numerical integration of the individual isotopologue concentrations measured by the optical spectrometer. Rapid oxygen isotope exchange occurs within the combustion reactor between water vapor and molecular oxygen so that only hydrogen isotope compositions may be determined. Over a wide range in sample sizes, precisions were ±3-4 per mil. This is comparable but worse than continuous flow-isotope ratio mass spectroscopy (CF-IRMS) methods owing to memory effects inherent in water vapor transfer. Nevertheless, the simplicity and reduced cost of this analysis compared to classical IRMS or CF-IRMS methods make this an attractive option to determine the hydrogen isotopic composition of organic materials where the utmost precision or small sample sizes are not needed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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