Introduction to instrumental methods of analysis



There can be no doubt that the nature and range of chemical analyses that are feasible has changed dramatically over the last two decades. Increasing demand for more detailed analyses at lower levels has led to the development of a vast range of sensitive instrumental techniques. The analyst is now in a position to provide analytical data of a precision and accuracy, even on trace components, that would not have been contemplated 20 years ago. This armoury of techniques has been exploited in all areas of the biological sciences. The impetus for increased sensitivity and precision has come from a number of sources. For example, public concern over the quality of our environment and food has placed a considerable onus on regulatory bodies to monitor a vast range of materials, from river water to processed foods, for many hundreds of organic and inorganic compounds. The increasing sophistication of medical diagnosis has also made demands on the detection and quantification of many compounds in biological samples such as blood, plasma and urine. The analyst is therefore faced with demands for the detection and quantification of many analytes and the situation is further complicated by the wide range of matrices in which these compounds are to be found, from the relatively simple, such as drinking water, to the extremely complex, for example, faeces.


Biological Science Instrumental Analysis Instrumental Method Vast Range Instrumental Technique 
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Recommended general texts

  1. Bassett, J., Denney, R.C., Jeffery, G.H. and Menham, J. (1983) Vogel’s Textbook of Quantitative Inorganic Analysis, 4th edn, Longman, London.Google Scholar
  2. Ramette, R.W. (1981) Chemical Equilibrium and Analysis, Addison-Wesley, Reading, MAGoogle Scholar
  3. Skoog, D.A. (1985) Principles of Instrumental Analysis, 3rd edn, Saunders College Publishing, Philadelphia.Google Scholar
  4. Willard, H.H., Merritt, L.L., Dean, J.A. and Settle, F.A. (1981) Instrumental Methods of Analysis, 6th edn, Wadsworth, Belmont, CA.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Blackie & Son Ltd 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of ReadingUK

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