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Atomic Fluorescence in Environmental Analysis

Environment: Water and Waste

  1. Yong Cai

Published Online: 15 SEP 2006

DOI: 10.1002/9780470027318.a0806

Encyclopedia of Analytical Chemistry

Encyclopedia of Analytical Chemistry

How to Cite

Cai, Y. 2006. Atomic Fluorescence in Environmental Analysis. Encyclopedia of Analytical Chemistry. .

Author Information

  1. Florida International University, Miami, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 SEP 2006

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Atomic fluorescence is a spectroscopic process which is based upon the absorption of radiation of a certain wavelength by an atomic vapor and subsequent radiational deactivation of the excited atoms toward the detection device. Both the absorption and the subsequent atomic emission processes occur at wavelengths which are characteristic of the atomic species present. Atomic fluorescence spectroscopy (AFS) is a very sensitive and selective method for the determination of a number of environmentally and biomedically important elements such as mercury, arsenic, selenium, bismuth, antimony, tellurium, lead, and cadmium. This technique has become one of the most important analytical tools for trace element analysis in environmental samples, such as mercury, owing to its advantages over other methods in terms of linearity and detection levels. Several books and a number of book chapters and review articles have been published dealing with the theory and instrumentation of AFS. This article will provide up-to-date AFS information regarding its application in environmental analysis.