The toxic and carcinogenic properties of inorganic and organic arsenic species make their determination in natural water vitally important. Determination of individual inorganic and organic arsenic species is critical because the toxicology, mobility, and adsorptivity vary substantially. Several methods for the speciation of arsenic in groundwater, surface-water, and acid mine drainage sample matrices using field and laboratory techniques are presented. The methods provide quantitative determination of arsenite [As(III)], arsenate [As(V)], monomethylarsonate (MMA), dimethylarsinate (DMA), and roxarsone in 2-8min at detection limits of less than 1??g arsenic per liter (??g AsL-1). All the methods use anion exchange chromatography to separate the arsenic species and inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry as an arsenic-specific detector. Different methods were needed because some sample matrices did not have all arsenic species present or were incompatible with particular high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) mobile phases. The bias and variability of the methods were evaluated using total arsenic, As(III), As(V), DMA, and MMA results from more than 100 surface-water, groundwater, and acid mine drainage samples, and reference materials. Concentrations in test samples were as much as 13,000??g AsL-1 for As(III) and 3700??g AsL-1 for As(V). Methylated arsenic species were less than 100??g AsL-1 and were found only in certain surface-water samples, and roxarsone was not detected in any of the water samples tested. The distribution of inorganic arsenic species in the test samples ranged from 0% to 90% As(III). Laboratory-speciation method variability for As(III), As(V), MMA, and DMA in reagent water at 0.5??g AsL-1 was 8-13% (n=7). Field-speciation method variability for As(III) and As(V) at 1??g AsL-1 in reagent water was 3-4% (n=3). ?? 2003 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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Field and laboratory arsenic speciation methods and their application to natural-water analysis