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Assessment of the concentration of Cr, Mn and Fe in sediment using laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy

K. N. Mekonnen, A. A. Ambushe, B. S. Chandravanshi, M. R. Abshiro, A. du Plessis, R. I. McCrindle


In the present study, laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) has been applied for the determination of levels of Cr, Mn and Fe in sediment samples and the results have been compared with that of flame-atomic absorption spectroscopy (F-AAS). Fourteen sediment samples were collected from Tinishu Akaki River (TAR), Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Pellets of 24 mm in diameter and 3-5 mm in thickness were prepared using a manual hydraulic press under a pressure of 8000 psi by mixing finely ground sediment samples with boric acid. The concentrations of Cr, Mn and Fe were successfully determined by Q-switched Nd:YAG laser at 1064 nm. Quantification of these metals was conducted against certified reference materials of sediments and soils. The LIBS results for the elements varied from 0.060–0.707 mg/g for Cr, 0.895–3.64 mg/g for Mn and 26.9–71.8 mg/g for Fe. The F-AAS results varied from 0.061–1.37 mg/g for Cr, 1.24–4.46 mg/g for Mn and 49.0–83.3 mg/g for Fe. TAR was found to be heavily polluted with Cr.


KEY WORDS: Laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy, Chromium, Manganese, Iron, Sediment, Tinishu Akaki River, Ethiopia


Bull. Chem. Soc. Ethiop. 2013, 27(1), 1-13.


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Bulletin of the Chemical Society of Ethiopia.   ISSN: 1011-3924