Determination of As(III), As(V), MMA and DMA in drinking water by solid phase extraction and neutron activation

  • W. Menendez Sanchez
  • B. Zwicker
  • A. Chatt


A combination of solid phase extraction, coprecipitation, and neutron activation techniques has been used to develop a speciation analysis method based on green chemistry for the major arsenic species in drinking water. Arsenate as As(V), monomethylarsonic acid (MMA), and dimethylarsinic acid (DMA) are separated and preconcentrated by strongly anion and cation exchange columns in tandem while As(III) remains in the effluent. These species are then selectively eluted and As(III) coprecipitated with bismuth sulphide. This simple method has been applied to the analysis of water reference materials with good results. The detection limits are 0.9, 1.7, 1.6, 3.8 and 16 ng mL−1 for As(III), As(V), MMA, DMA and total arsenic, respectively, using a neutron flux of 2.5 × 1011 cm−2 s−1 at the Dalhousie University SLOWPOKE-2 reactor (DUSR) facility and anti-coincidence gamma-ray spectrometry.


Speciation Solid phase extraction Neutron activation Arsenic species Drinking water 



The authors would like to thankfully acknowledge the cooperation of DUSR facility for irradiations and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) of Canada for research grants.


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Copyright information

© Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest, Hungary 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Chemistry, SLOWPOKE-2 Facility, Trace Analysis Research CentreDalhousie UniversityHalifaxCanada

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