The use of atomic mass spectrometry has grown enormously during the past two decades. Compared with most optical methods, atomic mass spectrometry offers lower detection limits (ppt to ppq) and broad elemental coverage, with the additional capabilities of providing isotopic abundance information and internal standardization through isotope dilution. The growth in the use of atomic mass spectrometry is directly related to the development of reliable instrumentation—primarily commercial instruments for inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS), glow discharge mass spectrometry (GD-MS), laser sampling mass spectrometry, and secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS).

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