Description: A laser ablation/ionization mass spectrometer system is described for the direct chemical analysis of solids. An Nd:YAG laser is used for ablation and ionization of the sample in a quadrupole ion trap operated in an ion-storage (IS) mode that is coupled with a reflectron time-of-flight mass spectrometer (TOF-MS). Single pulse experiments have demonstrated simultaneous detection of up to 14 elements present in glasses in the ppm range. However, detection of the components has produced non-stoichiometric results due to difference in ionization potentials and fractionation effects. Time-of-flight secondary ionization mass spectrometry (TOF-SIMS) was used to spatially map elemental species on the surface and provide further evidence of fractionation effects. Resolution (m/Dm) of 1500 and detection limits of approximately 10 pg have been achieved with a single laser pulse. The system configuration and related operating principles for accurately measuring low concentrations of isotopes are described.
Date: September 2, 2005
Creator: Holt, J K; Nelson, E J & Klunder, G L
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