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High-Precision Isotopic Analysis

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Analytical Services > View by Isotope > Hydrogen

Carbon | Nitrogen | Oxygen | Sulfur

lady in labHydrogen Isotope Analysis (2H/1H, or δD)

Hydrogen isotopic compositions can be determined for many types of samples. Water samples are done by CRDS. Reproducibility is generally 1.0 per mil or better. Hydrogen isotopes can be measured for all C1 – C5 hydrocarbons by using the offline prep method with a precision of +/- 2.0 per mil, or by compound-specific analysis (GC-P-IRMS) with a precision of +/- 5.0 per mil.

For organic solids and liquids, samples are analyzed using a Thermal Conversion Elemental Analyzer (TC/EA) interfaced with an isotope ratio mass spectrometer.

Sample Type Method Recommended
Sample Size*
Water CRDS** 10 ml
Gas1,2 Offline Prep. 100 cc
Gas2 Online 10 cc
Organic solid TCEA-IRMS 50 mg
Organic liquid TCEA-IRMS 0.5 ml

*If you do not have this amount of sample available, please contact us.
** For clean fresh water only. Purification steps require additional procedures and incur additonal costs.
1Includes 13C analysis
2Requires GC analysis

Tritium Analysis (3H)

Tritium analysis of groundwater is done by radiometric measurement of the water. Landfill leachates or other samples with concentrations of 15 TU or higher, are analyzed by direct counting of the purified water. Detection levels of 1 TU are achieved by electrolytic enrichment of the sample, followed by radiometric analysis.

Tritium analysis of methane is done by combusting large quantities of methane (> 5 liters), followed by radiometric measurement of the water from combustion.

Sample Type Sample Size*
Leachate by direct counting 50 ml
Groundwater w/electrolytic enrichment 250 ml
Methane 1,2 5 L of methane3

1 Includes 14C analysis of methane
2 Requires GC analysis
3 Total sample amount depends on methane concentration: i.e., methane concentration of 50%, requires 10 liters sample.



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