The very specific technology of inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) has truly broad applications across a wide range of fields, including Geology, Environmental Science, Biology, Ecology, Material Science, Engineering, Anthropology, Archaeology, Medicine, Clinical, Health, Toxicity and Forensics.

This equipment can be used to study trace metals and elements, heavy metals, toxic metals and many non-metal elements. It can perform chemical analysis, trace chemical analysis, isotopic analysis and laser ablation.  Below are some of the specific applications where it is regularly used:

Water Quality

  • Drinking water – hardness elements (Ca, Mg), regulations (As, Cr, Pb, etc…)
  • Surface waters – tracers, possible aquatic toxicity (Cu, Zn, etc…)
  • Waste water – meeting discharge requirements (P, Cu, Pb, etc…)
  • Salt water – after dilution, tracers, possible toxicity (As, etc…)

Air Quality

  • Aerosol toxics and tracers (Pb, As, V, Se, Ca, etc…)

Soil/Sediment Contamination

  • Nutrient elements for plants – P, K, S, Ca, Mg, B, Cl, Cu, Fe, Mn, Mo, Ni, Zn
  • Toxics – Cu, Pb, As, Hg, etc…

Isotope Ratio, Isotope/Isotopic Abundance

  • Sr, B, Pb, etc…

Otolith, Fin-Ray, with Laser Ablation

  • Sr isotope ratios, Sr/Ca ratios, etc…


  • Major, minor and trace elements, mapping by laser ablation


  • Elemental abundances, elemental ratios, U/Th, Nd/Sm, etc…

Nanoparticles, Nanometals

  • Au, Cu, Ag, etc…