Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS


In 1987, the Community Bureau of Reference initiated a collaborative study in order to improve the determination of organic mercury in environmental samples. The object of the study is to make it feasible to control the content of methyl-mercury (e.g. in fish) and to be able to elucidate the different pathways of organic mercury in nature. The final goal of the study is to produce and certify different environmental reference materials for the content of different mercury species. The work so far has been focussed on methyl-mercury and an approach to find the major sources of error in the participating laboratories. This project started with evaluation of the detection and calibration methods, and continued with the assessment of the extraction procedures. Results are presented for synthetic solutions (methyl-Hg in toluene, methyl-Hg + ethyl-Hg + phenyl-Hg in toluene, methyl-Hg + Hg(II) in water) and raw and cleaned extracts of a fish sample including a spiked extract. The study reveals the lack of suitable capillary columns and problems in the use of internal standards. Systematic errors between laboratories have been demonstrated. Work is now in progress on long term reproducibility using real samples, blank documentation, cleaned extracts and testing of capillary columns. Preliminary results are presented.

Additional information

Authors: DRABAEK I, Environmental Technology, Danish Technological Institute, Taastrup (DK);QUEVAUVILLER P, BCR, CEC Bruxelles (BE);GRIEPINK B, BCR, CEC Bruxelles (BE);MUNTAU H, JRC Ispra (IT)
Bibliographic Reference: Paper presented: International Conference on Mercury as an Environmental Pollutant, Gärle, June 11-13, 1990
Availability: Text not available
Record Number: 199011032 / Last updated on: 1994-12-01
Original language: en
Available languages: en