Sapphire

Sapphire instrument image
Collision Cell MC-ICP-MS
Sapphire from Nu is a next generation Multi-Collector ICP-MS. The collision cell capable instrument builds on the field proven Nu Instruments Multi-Collector ICP-MS platform (with over 170 installed instruments worldwide) to add unrivalled capabilities. The Sapphire features high and low energy switchable ion beam paths that enable the user to operate the instrument as a traditional Multi-Collector ICP-MS with no compromise in performance. In addition, the Sapphire can also be switched into Collision-Cell mode, where the ion beam is directed into a hexapole collision cell for the measurement of isotope systems where interferences cannot be resolved using high resolution, such as Calcium. Nu Instruments continue to lead innovation in Isotope Ratio analysis, with the Sapphire bringing additional capability to Multi-Collector ICP-MS allowing the measurement of even more isotope systems by this now well-established technique.
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    The application of non-traditional stable isotope systems such as Mg, Si, S, K, Ca, Ti, V, Cr, Fe, Ni and Se in geochemistry, cosmochemistry and life sciences has been spurred by the advancement of the multi-collector ICP-MS (MC-ICPMS) over the last two decades. This versatile technique, although widely considered as the standard method for the high precision isotopic analysis of such systems, is limited by the molecular species generated by the argon ICP ion source which cause significant interferences on the mass spectrum of these elements. These molecular species can interfere directly with the atomic ions of the same nominal mass, leading to inaccurate isotope ratio determination. A typical solution is to use the high-resolution capabilities of MC-ICP-MS to resolve or partially resolve the isotopes of interest from their respective interferences, but at the cost of significantly reduced ion transmission. Furthermore, analysis of certain isotopes such as 40Ca is not possible on the traditional MC-ICP-MS instruments, as the 40Ar interference cannot be resolved.
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