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  • 1 University of Azad Jammu and Kashmir Department of Chemistry Muzaffarabad Pakistan
  • 2 Pakistan Institute of Nuclear Science and Technology, P.O. Nilore Nuclear Chemistry Division Islamabad Pakistan
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A rapid and sensitive spectrophotometric method has been developed for the determination of thorium using 0.04% Arsenazo-III in a 2M perchloric acid solution. Absorbance was measured in 1 cm cell and the complex has a sensitive absorption peak at 654 nm. The complex is formed instantly in perchloric acid and remains stable for 45 minutes with constant absorbance. Beer's law is obeyed in the range 1–60 g·g–1 of thorium concentration with a molar absorptivity at 654 nm = 3.07·105 M–1·cm–1 at 24±2°C. The foreign ions interference in thorium determination have been checked. The cations were tested at >60-fold excess of thorium, Mn(II), Fe(III), Co(II) and Ni(II) interfere negatively, whereas only Ce(III) has increased the absorbance. Among the anions, cyanide, phosphate, thiocyanate and acetate at 150-fold excess of thorium cause significant interference. However, thorium can bedetermined in the presence of nitrate, chloride, oxalate, tartrate, ascorbate, thiosulphate and citrate. The method has been applied on certified reference material for thorium determination after extractive separation and the result was found in good agreement with the certified value. The method has been also applied successfully to determine thorium at g·g–1 level in local ore samples with a precision of ±0.04%.