Application Note: Determination of Exchangeable Cations in Soil Extracts Using the Agilent 4100 Microwave Plasma-Atomic Emission Spectrometer
30 November 2012

Accurate, routine testing of nutrients in soil samples is critical to understanding its potential fertility. Many of the nutrients that are vital to plants are exchangeable cations. Determination of these cations is of great interest for agronomic diagnostics and soil sustainability, enabling more accurate assessment and management of nutrient requirements. This application note describes an analytical method for the determination of Ca, K, Mg, Mn and Na is soils using the Agilent 4100 Microwave Plasma-Atomic Emission Spectrometer (MP-AES). The results obtained by MP-AES are compared to those obtained by flame atomic absorption spectrometry (FAAS) and inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrometry (ICP-OES). The results are in good agreement, which confirms the suitability of the 4100 MP-AES to this application.

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