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Ionic liquid-based dispersive liquid–liquid microextraction for the determination of formaldehyde in wastewaters and detergents


Spectrophotometry in combination with ionic liquid-based dispersive liquid–liquid microextraction (DLLME) was applied for the extraction and determination of formaldehyde in real samples. The method is based on the reaction of formaldehyde with methyl acetoacetate in the presence of ammonia. The variation in the absorbance of the reaction product was measured at 375 nm. An appropriate mixture of ethanol (disperser solvent) and ionic liquid, 1-hexyl-3-methylimidazoliumhexafluoro-phosphate [C6MIM][PF6] (extraction solvent) was rapidly injected into a water sample containing formaldehyde. After extraction, sedimented phase was analyzed by spectrophotometry. Under the optimum conditions, the calibration graph was linear in the range of 0.1–20 ng mL−1 with the detection limit of 0.02 ng mL−1 and limit of quantification of 0.08 ng mL−1 for formaldehyde. The relative standard deviation (RSD%, n = 5) for the extraction and determination of 0.8 ng mL−1 of formaldehyde in the aqueous samples was 2.5%. The results showed that DLLME is a very simple, rapid, sensitive, and efficient analytical method for the determination of trace amounts of formaldehyde in wastewaters and detergents, and suitable results were obtained.

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We gratefully acknowledge the post-graduate office of Guilan University for supporting this work.

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Correspondence to Majid Arvand.

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Arvand, M., Bozorgzadeh, E., Shariati, S. et al. Ionic liquid-based dispersive liquid–liquid microextraction for the determination of formaldehyde in wastewaters and detergents. Environ Monit Assess 184, 7597–7605 (2012).

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  • Formaldehyde
  • Ionic liquid
  • Dispersive liquid–liquid microextraction
  • Wastewaters
  • Spectrophotometry