2006 Volume 22 Issue 10 Pages 1361-1365
A simple and ultrasensitive method, which was based on cold vapor generation (CVG) coupled to atomic fluorescence spectrometry (AFS), was proposed for speciation analysis of inorganic mercury (Hg2+) and methylmercury (MeHg) in water samples. In the presence of UV irradiation, all the mercury (MeHg + Hg2+) in a sample solution can be reduced to Hg0 by SnCl2; without UV irradiation, only Hg2+ species can be determined. So the concentration of MeHg can be obtained from the difference of the total mercury and Hg2+ concentration; thus, speciation analysis of Hg2+ and MeHg was simply achieved without chromatographic separation. Under the optimized experimental conditions, the limits of detection were 0.01 ng mL-1 for both Hg2+ and MeHg. The sensitivity and limit of detection were not dependent on the mercury species, and a simple Hg2+ aqueous standard series can be used for the determination of both Hg2+ and MeHg.