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Why use Combustion Ion Chromatography (CIC)

Combustion Ion Chromatography is an analytical system that measures total halogens (F, Cl, Br and I) and sulphur in solid, gas and liquid samples. Halogens and sulphur have corrosive properties so it is important to determine their concentration where this may be an issue. The European Union and other countries such as the US, China and Japan regulate the quantity of halogens released into the environment and a reliable method of quantification, like CIC, is a vital compliance tool for RoHS (Restriction of Hazardous Substances), which began in the EU.

In the past a good deal of manual work was required to analyse solids and highly viscous samples. CIC is a fully automated system that simultaneously determines halogens and sulphur without the need for internal standards in any non-aqueous sample. It extends the range of ion chromatography to all types of combustion samples and is far less labour-intensive than traditional methods.

But how does it work?

Samples are thermally digested and then combusted with Oxygen and H2O. Under high temperature, the sample is pyrolised in an oxidizing atmosphere. Any sulphur in the sample reacts to form SOx and halogens form hydrogen halides and halogen gas.

The analytes are then trapped by the absorbent solution and injected into the ion chromatography unit where they are analysed.

The advantages of using CIC

  • The system can be used for all types of combustible samples (solid, gas and liquid).
  • Simultaneous determination for both halogens and sulphur
  • Halogens are analysed individually and speciated as F, Cl, Br, and I
  • One combustion method covers all sample types
  • <0.1 ppm detection levels
  • Capability of linking to AA, ICP-MS or fraction collector
  • Combustion, Absorption, and Injection into the IC are fully automated
  • Analysis of solids and viscous substances is possible

CIC is superior to other methods regarding ease of use, sensitivity and precision. ICP-MS and ISE analysis can also quantify halogens, but the sample preparation is very complex and time-consuming. In laboratories which run significant numbers of halogen and sulphur analyses, CIC presents a very real opportunity to streamline processes and ease bottlenecks.

Want to know more about CIC?

Please contact us for further information or to arrange a demonstration.