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Flame Photometers

In flame photometry a photometer is used to analyze an inorganic chemical to determine the concentration of certain metal ions, among them sodium, potassium, lithium, and calcium. Group 1 and Group 2 metals are good candidates for flame photometry due to their low excitation energies.

In flame photometry, instruments run a controlled flame test with the intensity of the flame color quantified by photoelectric circuitry. The intensity of the color will depend on the energy absorbed by the atoms that was sufficient to vaporize them. The sample is introduced to the flame at a constant rate. Filters select which colors the photometer detects and exclude the influence of other ions. Before use, the device requires calibration with a series of standard solutions of the ion to be tested.

Flame photometry is an inexpensive option to flame emission spectroscopy, where the emitted light is analyzed with a monochromator. John Morris offers a range of models and accessories (including autosamplers) through Cole-Parmer. If you have a question about flame photometry, its benefits or instruments used in this process contact one of our Technical Experts.

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