Determination of Cr(III) and Cr(VI) in water by dual-gel electromembrane extraction and a microfluidic paper-based device

  • Hadi TabaniEmail author
  • Farzaneh Dorabadi Zare
  • Waleed AlahmadEmail author
  • Pakorn Varanusupakul
Original Paper


A major goal of green chemistry is to avoid the use of toxic organic solvents. In particular, there are few green methods allowing extraction and quantification of chromium species in environmental samples. Here, we developed home-made, dual-gel electromembrane extraction combined with a microfluidic paper-based analytical device for the simultaneous determination of Cr(III) and Cr(VI) in water, without using any organic solvent. The positively charged Cr(III) and negatively charged Cr(VI) migrated selectively into the cathodic (pH 2.0) and anodic (pH 3.0) aqueous acceptor phases, respectively. After extraction, the anodic acceptor phase containing Cr(VI) was analyzed directly by a microfluidic paper-based analytical device, after the addition of the diphenylcarbazide colorimetric reagent. The cathodic acceptor phase containing Cr(III) was mixed with Ce(IV) to oxidize Cr(III) to Cr(VI), and then, Cr(VI) ions were detected on the microfluidic paper-based analytical device after adding diphenylcarbazide. Under the optimized conditions, limits of detection of 2.0 and 3.0 ng/mL and extraction recoveries of 58.8% and 83.3% were achieved for Cr(VI) and Cr(III), respectively.


Dual-gel electromembrane Microfluidic paper-based analytical devices Green extraction Chromium speciation Environmental water samples 



This research was supported financially by the Research Institute of Applied Sciences (ACECR), Shahid Beheshti University, and by the Rachadapisek Sompot Fund for Postdoctoral Fellowship, Chulalongkorn University.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

10311_2019_921_MOESM1_ESM.docx (981 kb)
Supplementary file1 (DOCX 980 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Environmental Geology, Research Institute of Applied Sciences (ACECR)Shahid Beheshti UniversityTehranIran
  2. 2.Department of Analytical Chemistry and PollutantsShahid Beheshti University, G. C.TehranIran
  3. 3.Department of Chemistry, Faculty of ScienceChulalongkorn UniversityBangkokThailand
  4. 4.Chemical Approaches for Food Application Research Group, Faculty of ScienceChulalongkorn UniversityBangkokThailand

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