A study is described that identifies the optimum operating conditions for the accurate determination of Co, Cu, Mn, Ni, Pb, Zn, Ag, Bi and Cd using simultaneous multi-element atomic absorption spectrometry. Accuracy was measured in terms of the percentage recoveries of the analytes based on certified values in nine standard reference materials. In addition to identifying optimum operating conditions for accurate analysis, conditions resulting in serious matrix interferences and the magnitude of the interferences were determined. The listed elements can be measured with acceptable accuracy in a lean to stoicheiometric flame at measurement heights ???5-10 mm above the burner.