Determination of total and non-water soluble iodine in atmospheric aerosols by thermal extraction and spectrometric detection (TESI)

BS Gilfedder, R Chance, U Dettmann, SC Lai, AR Baker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Iodine has recently been of interest in atmospheric chemistry due to its role in tropospheric ozone depletion, modification of the HO/HO2 ratio and aerosol nucleation. Gas-phase iodine chemistry is tightly coupled to the aerosol phase through heterogeneous reactions, which are dependent on iodine concentrations and speciation in the aerosol. To date, the only method available for total iodine determination in aerosols is collection on filters by impaction and quantification by neutron activation analysis (NAA). NAA is not widely available to all working groups and is costly to commission. Here, we present a method to determine total iodine concentrations in aerosol impact filter samples by combustion of filter sub-samples (~5 cm2) at 1,000 °C, trapping in deionised water and quantification by UV/Vis spectroscopy. Both quartz and cellulose filters were analysed from four separate sampling campaigns. The method proved to be sensitive (3s?=?6 ng absolute iodine?˜?3 pmol?m-3) precise (RSD?~?5%) and accurate, as determined by external and standard addition calibrations. Total iodine concentrations ranged from 10 pmol?m-3 over the Southern Ocean to 100 pmol?m-3 over the tropical Atlantic, in agreement with previous estimates. The soluble iodine concentration (extracted with water and measured by ICP-MS) was then subtracted from the total iodine to yield non-water-soluble iodine (NSI). The NSI fraction ranged from 20% to 53% of total iodine, and thus can be significant in some cases.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)519-526
Number of pages8
JournalAnalytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2010

Cite this