A novel ionic liquid/micro-volume back extraction procedure combined with flame atomic absorption spectrometry for determination of trace nickel in samples of nutritional interest

J Hazard Mater. 2010 Jan 15;173(1-3):534-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2009.08.118. Epub 2009 Aug 31.


A simple, highly sensitive and environment-friendly method for the determination of trace amount of nickel ion in different matrices is proposed. In the preconcentration step, the nickel from 10 mL of an aqueous solution was extracted into 500 microL of ionic liquid, 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolium hexafluorophosphate [C(4)MIM][PF(6)], containing PAN as complexing agent. Subsequently, the PAN complex was back-extracted into 250 microL of nitric acid solution, and 100 microL of it was analyzed by flow injection flame atomic absorption spectrometry (FI-FAAS). The main parameter influencing the extraction and determination of nickel, such as pH, concentration of PAN, extraction time and temperature, ionic strength, and concentration of stripping acid solution, were optimized. An enhancement factor of 40.2 was achieved with 25 mL sample. The limit of detection (LOD) and quantification obtained under the optimum conditions were 12.5 and 41.0 microg L(-1), respectively. To validate the proposed methods two certified reference materials 681-I and BCR No. 288 were analyzed and the results were in good agreement with the certified values. The proposed method was successfully applied to determination of nickel in water samples, rice flour and black tea.

MeSH terms

  • Chelating Agents / chemistry
  • Flour / analysis
  • Flow Injection Analysis
  • Food Analysis / methods*
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
  • Imidazoles
  • Indicators and Reagents
  • Ionic Liquids / analysis
  • Ligands
  • Naphthols / chemistry
  • Nickel / analysis*
  • Oryza / chemistry
  • Reference Standards
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Solutions
  • Spectrophotometry, Atomic / methods*
  • Tea / chemistry
  • Temperature
  • Water Supply / analysis


  • 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolium hexafluorophosphate
  • Chelating Agents
  • Imidazoles
  • Indicators and Reagents
  • Ionic Liquids
  • Ligands
  • Naphthols
  • Solutions
  • Tea
  • 1-(2-pyridylazo)-2-naphthol
  • Nickel