Microanalysis Laboratory

Scope of Services

The Microanalysis lab provides two types of services: elemental analysis run by the lab technicians and training in a number of client/student-run instruments.  For details on all procedures, please see the sections on each instrument.  The elements requested and their theoretical compositions described by the user determine which instruments the lab uses.

JASPER (JavaScript Percentage Elemental Results Calculator) – great for calculating for known solvents or other contaminants

Sample Login/Account Registration

ELEMENTAL ANALYSIS

The lab uses various instruments for elemental analysis:

  1. CHN Analysis - Exeter Analytical CE 440   - Measuring carbon, hydrogen, and nitrogen in compounds.  (Note:  No aqueous solutions.)
  2. ICP Analysis -  ICP-MS and ICP-OES - Measuring all metallic elements, sulfur and phosphorus in compounds or solutions.
  3. Halide Analysis - Measuring halides (compound or solution) via Ion-Selective Electrode (ISE).  (Solids are combusted via Schöniger oxidation method.)

Submission forms for elemental analysis (CHN, ICP, Halides) can be created at any time via the online submission section.  On-campus submission forms can be checked in at the lab computer during work hours in room 47 Noyes Lab, when samples are dropped off.  Off-campus submissions should be sent to the address below and will be checked in when received, if a submission form has been made.  Analysis of received samples (both on- and off-campus) will not be started until the samples have been checked in with a completed sample submission form.

Client/Student-Run Instrumentation

Isothermal Titration Calorimeter (VP-ITC) – Measuring heat generated or absorbed in liquid samples as a result of mixing two or more reactants.  (Note: Liquid samples only.)

Thermogravimetric Analyzer (TGA) – Measuring the sample weight changes over a given temperature and pressure range under specific environmental conditions. (NOTE: No corrosive gases can be used.)

Differential Scanning Calorimeter (DSC-Diamond) – Measuring the amount of energy (heat) absorbed or released by a sample as it is heated, cooled or held at a constant (isothermal) temperature.  This instrument is best used for studies at temperatures of 400°C and lower.

Surface Analysis – 3Flex analyzer and Smart-Vac degasser.  Measures physisorption (surface area, mesopore/micropore, adsorption, desorption, isotherms), chemisorption (static/dynamic), vapor adsorption or heat of adsorption for solid samples. (Note: Solid samples only.)

Requests for being trained in the client/student-run instruments (ITC, TGA, DSC, 3Flex/SmartVac) should be requested through the ChemFacility Online Manager (ChemFOM).  This will notify the specific trainer that you wish to be trained in that particular instrument.  Reserving time on these instruments is also done via ChemFOM or via specific scheduling with the trainer (3Flex/SmartVac only)

Results and Turnaround

All elemental analysis results, unless noted otherwise, will be reported as % by weight.


Your results will be sent to you via email to the email address your account is made under.  Samples are generally run on a first-in, first-out basis.  Depending on the status of the previous day’s runs, the sample que and whether instrument maintenance is needed, turnaround time for results is usually:

CHN analysis: 2-3 business days.  If 24-hour turnaround is needed, please talk to Elizabeth Eves (bleves@illinois.edu).

ICP analysis: 3-10 business days

Halide analysis:  3-5 business days

These times will be longer if there are instrumental problems, maintenance or if the staff is reduced due to sickness, vacation or meetings.
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