2015 Student Research Conference:
28th Annual Student Research Conference

Design and Optimization of a Home-Built Cold Vapor Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer (CVAAS) for Mercury Determination
Ciara M. Witt* and Richard J. Bell
Dr. David McCurdy, Faculty Mentor

Mercury (Hg) is a well-documented teratogen. Its ability to cause adverse health effects in trace amounts has necessitated the development of techniques to accurately determine the amount of Hg in a sample to the sub-part-per-billion level. CVAAS is an EPA-approved method to quantitatively determine the concentration of Hg in an aqueous solution. CVAAS is highly useful because it requires limited reagents and the possession of simple instrumental components. Additional benefits include rapid measurements and simple operation. As commercial CVAAS mercury analyzers are expensive and not presently available at Truman, we have designed and constructed a home-built CVAAS analyzer to allow us to monitor Hg levels in local water sources. This presentation will explore the principles of CVAAS determination and describe our current instrument design as well as discussing preliminary optimization results from our instrument.

Keywords: CVAAS, mercury, environment, optimization


Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 306-3
Location: MG 2001
Time: 1:30

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