Superfund Research Program
Gold Nanoparticle-Based Mercury Analyzer for On-Site Measurement of Soil and Sediment
Project Leader: Jay James
Grant Number: R44ES023729
Funding Period: Phase II: August 2015 - September 2018
Picoyune’s Runabout analyzer is the first battery operable field analyzer for mercury in vapor, solid, and liquid samples. The plasmonic sensing technology developed in this project is portable, easy to use, and exceptionally resistant to interferences.
The vapor analyzer is capable of continuous gas monitoring to 0.1 microgram per meter cubed, while being immune to the common interferences for direct mercury analysis in air. The occupational exposure to mercury is often in an atmosphere with co-contamination, making a selective tool necessary for reliable results.
When paired with the portable sample furnace, the system is capable of measuring 10 nanograms to 100 micrograms of mercury in up to 1.5g of liquid or solid sample material. The Runabout analyzer provides immediate results in 5 minutes per sample. This is a powerful alternative to the delays of laboratory analysis. Users can respond with changes to how they are handling contaminated material.