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A simple and very sensitive spectrophotometric method for the direct determination of copper ions

Pinto, Juan J., Moreno, Carlos, García-Vargas, Manuel
Analytical and bioanalytical chemistry 2002 v.373 no.8 pp. 844-848
absorbance, absorption, alloys, copper, detection limit, ethanol, pH, spectrophotometers, stoichiometry, tap water
A sensitive spectrophotometric method for the direct determination of copper in aqueous samples without a preconcentration step has been developed. It is based on the formation of a yellow complex with the chromogenic reagent di-2-pyridyl ketone benzoylhydrazone (dPKBH) in an alkaline medium. The complex stoichiometry was 1:2 (Cu:dPKBH) and presents maximum absorbance at 370 nm. The influence of chemical variables affecting the behaviour of the system such as pH, concentration of dPKBH, buffer solution and ethanol, order of addition of the reagents and stability of the complex, were evaluated. The molar absorptivity (ε) was 3.92×10⁴ L mol–¹ cm–¹, and Beer's law was obeyed up to 3 mg L–¹of copper. The relative standard deviation was 0.46% (n=11) for a sample containing 1 mg L–¹Cu(II). The limit of detection was 2.5 µg L–¹and was therefore more sensitive than the direct methods reported previously. Finally, the method was successfully validated by analysing several real samples with different matrices, such as tap water, natural water or copper alloys, with an average relative error of 2.46%.