Sample preparation


The analysis of trace quantities of natural or anthropogenic chemicals in the environment, often as part of complex mixtures requires the use of methodologies to isolate and/or concentrate the target compounds. These can be time consuming, so the use of instrumentation to speed up and add a degree of automatism in the analysis is a must is a large number of samples are to be analyzed quickly, reliably, safely and, hopefully, cheaply.

For this purpose, we use a suite of instruments such as:

  • Microwaves for sample digestion or extraction
  • ASE for the rapid extraction or organic mixtures
  • Solvent or Acid concentrators
  • Liquid chromstography to fractionate or purify extracts



Thermo Scientific Dionex™ASE™ 350
Extraction and clean up of biomarkers (e.g. PAHs, n-alkanes, n-alkenones, sugars and sterols) from filters and sediments.
TriPlus™ RSH Autosampler - Thermo Fisher Scientific
Robotic system for automatic liquid handling, sample preparation and injection into a GC
Microwave Digestion System MARS 6 - CEM
Acid digestion of filters, soils and sediment to analyse pyrogenic carbon
MicroVap Microwave Concentration and Evaporation Vessels for acid solutions
System to reduce the volume of acid solutions using microwave and a vacuum pump
CEM Mars 5xpress microwave
For the acid digestion of sediments and aerosols with HNO3 and HF to analyse trace metals.
CEM Mars 5 microwave
For the hydrolysis and erxtraction of biomarkers from aerosols, sediments, soils and archeological artefacts
Centrifugal sample concentrator
By placing sample extracts (organic or aqueous) under vacuum in a centrifuge, the elimination of solvent and concentration of solutes can be sped up considerably
Automated solvent evaporation system TurboVap® LV
Optimized approach to the "classical" method of concentrating solvent mixtures (organic or aqueous) through nitrogen blowdown.
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