Portable analyzer for the measurement of ammonium in natural waters

A portable ammonium analyser was developed and used to measure in situ ammonium in the marine environment. The analyser incorporates an improved LED photodiode-based fluorescence detector (LPFD). This system is more sensitive and considerably smaller than previous systems and incorporates a pre-filtering subsystem enabling measurements in turbid, sediment-laden waters. Over the typical range for ammonium in marine waters (0–10 mM), the response is linear (r2 = 0.9930) with a limit of detection (S/N ratio > 3) of 10 nM. The working range for marine waters is 0.05–10 μM. Repeatability is 0.3% (n = 10) at an ammonium level of 2 μM. Results from automated operation in 15 min cycles over 16 days had good overall precision (RSD = 3%, n = 660). The system was field tested at three shallow South Florida sites. Diurnal cycles and possibly a tidal influence were expressed in the concentration variability observed. 



(1) Amornthammarong, N.; Zhang, J.-Z.; Ortner, P.B.; Stamates, J.; Shoemaker, M.; Kindel, M.W. Environ. Sci.: Processes Impacts. 2013, 15, 579 - 584.

(2) Amornthammarong, N.; Stamates, J.; Ortner, P.B.; Hendee, J.C.; Lapointe, B.E. AGU fall meeting (poster). 2014, click here to download.

(3) Lapointe, B. E.; Herren, L.; Tarnowski, M.; Amornthammarong, N.; Stamates, J.; Ortner, P.B.; Hendee, J. (in preparation) Integrating Continuous Ammonium Measurements with Real-time LOBO Monitoring in Florida’s Indian River Lagoon.