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Nanoparticles in Materials Science

Multi-Element Analysis of Single Nanoparticles in Materials Science


Nanoparticle Characterization in Materials Science

Nanoparticles have unique physicochemical properties compared to their bulk analogs. They are increasingly incorporated into industrial processes and consumer products, including use as additives, drug delivery agents, and catalysts, and more. Advances in nanomaterials have enabled exciting technological and scientific capabilities. However, the characterization of these materials still remains a big challenge. Reliable analytical techniques and methods are required to gain greater understanding of the properties of nanoparticles and their behavior.

Single particle inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (sp- ICP-MS) is already employed as a tool for the rapid analysis of size and number concentration of inorganic nanoparticles. In order to overcome the limitations of sequential ICPMS instruments, which are limited to analyze one or two isotopes per nanoparticle, a clear solution is to employ simultaneous full-spectrum mass analyzers such as time-of-flight mass spectrometers (TOFMS). The icpTOF quantitatively detects ALL isotopes in single nanoparticles with high sensitivity and temporal resolution, thereby extending the capabilities of traditional sp-ICP-MS to include multi-element analysis of single nanoparticles, which is critical for characterization of complex systems in materials science.


  • Multi-Element Analysis of Nanoparticles Using the icpTOF

    • All the elements.  All the time.
      Never miss an analyte or interference signal with complete, full-resolution mass spectra.
    • Highest available sensitivity.
      Increase spatial resolution and detect smaller particles with high SNR.
    • Precise isotope ratios.
      Simultaneously measure all isotopes, eliminating the susceptibility of your measurements to source and sample fluctuations.
    • High speed detection.
      Record a complete mass spectrum every 12-50 µs, optimum for detecting fast transient signals such as individual nanoparticles.
    • Tofpilot software.
      User friendly with dedicated workflow for particle analysis.
    • Fast and simultaneous multi-element detection.
      Determine elemental fingerprints for nanoparticles.
    • Reaction collision cell.
      Suppress interferences with QCellTM collision/reaction technology.


    What is Single Particle ICP-MS?


    Nanoparticles Materials Science

    Nanosteel nanoparticles composed of Fe, Cr, Ni, Mo were diluted in milliQ water and measured with the icpTOF using H2 in the Q-cell at 3 ml/min to remove ArO interference on 56Fe.


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