Total Digestion of Polymers for Element Analysis with ICP

Rotor 20SVT50 in Multiwave 5000 allows the digestion of many polymer types requiring higher temperatures with the convenience and safety of the SmartVent technology.

Sample preparation: Leaching vs. total Digestion

Nowadays we can’t imagine a life without polymers. They are used for all kind of applications, from food packaging to construction material or toy production. Some, like the latter, have specific requirements1 and hence specific, more or less standardized methods for analysis were defined.

Leaching at low temperatures with diluted acids is used for the determination of migration of heavy metals. This is done for instance to avoid the risk of intoxication of infants with heavy metals from toys, or for consumer products like plastic containers and materials used to pack food, beverages and cosmetics.

If the heavy metal concentration of the bulk of the material is of interest, a total digestion of the polymer is required. This is a greater challenge, as

  • the high content of carbon in the molecules causes a lot of exothermic heat and reaction gases during digestion, and
  • polymers of different molecular structures show very different chemical stability and may require higher digestion temperatures for a complete digestion.

Rotor 20SVT50 in Multiwave 5000 provides the already well-established SmartVent technology at an advanced pressure level and thus allows the controlled release of reaction gases such as CO2 and NOx generated during the digestion. This ensures that higher digestion temperatures can be reached and ensures excellent quality of digestion even for hard to digest samples.

The SmartTemp sensor for internal temperature measurement enables quick and accurate temperature measurement which is especially important to reliably control reactive samples at elevated temperatures.

Thus, the combination of highest operation parameters, unrivaled temperature measurement and up to 20 positions, enabling the highest throughput for any high performance rotor currently on the market, make Rotor 20SVT50 in Multiwave 5000 the ideal configuration for demanding samples. 

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