A fully automated portable analyzer for toxic metal ion detection based on a combination of a nanostructured electrochemical sensor and a sequential flow injection system has been developed in this work. The sensor was fabricated from a carbon paste electrode modified with acetamide phosphonic acid self-assembled monolayer on mesoporous silica (Ac-Phos SAMMS) which was embedded in a very small wall-jet (flow-onto) electrochemical cell. The electrode is solid-state and mercury-free. Samples and reagents were injected into the system and flowed through the electrochemical cell by a user programmable sequential flow technique which required minimal volume of samples and reagents and allowed the automation of the analyzer operation. The portable analyzer was evaluated for lead (Pb) detection due to the excellent binding affinity between Pb and the functional groups of Ac-Phos SAMMS as well as the great concern for Pb toxicity. Linear calibration curve was obtained in a low concentration range (1-25 ppb of Pb(II)). The reproducibility was excellent; the percent relative standard deviation was 2.5 for seven consecutive measurements of 10 ppb of Pb(II) solution. Excess concentrations of Ca, Ni, Co, Zn, and Mn ions in the solutions did not interfere with detection of Pb, due to the specificity and the large number of the functional groups on the electrode surface. The electrode was reliable for at least 90 measurements over 5 days. This work is an important milestone in the development of the next-generation metal ion analyzers that are portable, fully automated, and remotely controllable.
- Automated portable analyzer
- Nanostructured electrochemical sensors
- Sequential flow injection
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Analytical Chemistry