The Nu InstrumentsTM AttoM Single Collector High Resolution ICP-MS is presently equipped with a Photon MachinesTM deep UV (193 nm wavelength) excimer laser. The system can be run in resolutions from 300 to over 10,000. However, for most applications, the Attom will be run at the lower end of the resolution range, where it produces flat-topped peaks, allowing for greater accuracy during peak jumping mode; necessary for example to properly analyze transient signals produced by laser ablation. Along with two new analytical software packages, Iolite and Glitter, the AttoM will generate new fields of applications by its ability to do trace element fingerprinting and elemental mapping by laser ablation, particularly useful for mineral exploration. Additionally, we are currently working on moving all laser ablation U-Pb analytical work (zircon, monazite, titanite, perovskite) to the AttoM. For solution work, the AttoM's limits of detection (LOD) for most elements are two or more orders of magnitude better relative to a typical quadrupole ICPMS.
The AttoM has LOD in solution mode for elements ranging across the periodic table that include: Lithium < 500 ppq, Indium < 100 ppq, Palladium < 10 ppq, Uranium < 1.2 ppq. For a number of troublesome elements that are low in concentration and yet have significant ICP-induced mass interferences, (e.g., 56Fe = 40Ar + 16O) the analytical method can be shifted to use higher resolution (e.g., 3800), which, although degrading the peak shape to pointy tops, allows true discrimination of baselines for proper analysis.
Table of LOD for solution analyses using the Nu Instruments AttoM.