Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry

, Volume 388, Issue 2, pp 463–474 | Cite as

Simultaneous determination of speciation parameters of Cu, Pb, Cd and Zn in model solutions of Suwannee River fulvic acid by pseudopolarography

  • Parthasarathi Chakraborty
  • Ismail I. Fasfous
  • John Murimboh
  • Chuni L. Chakrabarti
Original Paper

Abstract

There is a growing awareness of the importance of quantitative determinations of speciation parameters of the trace metals Cu, Zn, Cd and Pb in aqueous samples containing chemically heterogeneous humic substances, especially when they are present together, interacting with one another and competing for specific binding sites of the humic substances. Such determinations require fundamental knowledge and understanding of these complex interactions, gained through basic laboratory-based studies of well-characterized humic substances in model solutions. Since the chemical heterogeneity of humic substances plays an important role in the thermodynamics (stability) and kinetics (lability) of trace metal competition for humic substances, a metal speciation technique such as pseudopolarography that can reveal the special, distinctive nature of metal complexation is required, and it was therefore used in this study. A comparison of the heterogeneity parameters (Γ) for Zn(II), Cd(II), Pb(II) and Cu(II) complexes in model solutions of Suwannee River fulvic acid (SRFA) shows that ΓCdZnPbCu, suggesting that SRFA behaves as a relatively homogeneous complexant for Zn(II) and Cd(II), whereas it behaves as a relatively heterogeneous complexant for Pb(II) and an even more heterogeneous complexant for Cu(II) under the experimental conditions used. The order of values of logK* (from the differential equilibrium function, DEF) for the trace metals at pH 5.0 follow the sequence:
$$\log K^{ * }_{{{\text{Cu}}}} > \log K^{ * }_{{{\text{Pb}}}} > \log K^{ * }_{{{\text{Zn}}}} > \log K^{ * }_{{{\text{Cd}}}} $$
These results are in good agreement with the literature values. The results of this work suggest the possibility of simultaneously determining several metals in a sample in a single experiment, and hence in a shorter time than required for multiple experiments.

Keywords

Simultaneous determination Suwannee River fulvic acid Trace metal speciation Metal complexation Pseudopolarography 

Notes

Acknowledgements

Research grants from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) and NSERC Metal In The Human Environment–Research Network (MITHE–RN) are gratefully acknowledged.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Parthasarathi Chakraborty
    • 1
  • Ismail I. Fasfous
    • 1
  • John Murimboh
    • 2
  • Chuni L. Chakrabarti
    • 1
  1. 1.Ottawa-Carleton Chemistry Institute, Department of ChemistryCarleton UniversityOttawaCanada
  2. 2.Department of ChemistryAcadia UniversityWolfvilleCanada

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