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  • 1 Dalhousie University Trace Analysis Research Centre, Department of Chemistry B3H 4J1 Halifax N. S. (Canada)
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A combination of instrumental and preconcentration neutron activation analysis (NAA) methods has been developed for multielement determination in acid rain. Concentrations of 24 elements have been measured in the particulate matter of rainwater by the instrumental NAA method which involves 3 irradiation and 4 counting periods. Trace elements in the soluble fraction of rainwater have been preconcentrated using Chelex-100 resin. Various factors that could influence the retention of elements on to the resin have been examined, and reagent and other blanks investigated in detail. Concentrations of 15 elements have been measured by directly irradiating the resins. A graphite furnace atomic absorption spectrometry method has been used for determining Cd and Pb levels in the soluble fraction. Precision and accuracy of the methods have been evaluated, and limits of detection and determination calculated. The methods have been applied to rainwater samples collected from 36 locations across Canada. Enrichment factors, interelement and inter-ion concentration correlation coefficients are discussed