I've been looking for extra information concerning flame atomic emission spectroscopy. I need a clear overview of which elements are detectable with this technique, but I can't find anything because flame AES seems to be quite outdated.

If there is no such overview, could there be a list of elements not detectable by flame AES, but detectable by ICP-AES? That would also work for me.


but I can't find anything because flame AES seems to be quite outdated.

Please don't say that you cannot find anything, this is the reason (i) why physical libraries still exist and (ii) right key words are needed for proper literature search and (iii) not everything is available on the web free of cost.

Most of the metals are detectable by flame atomic emission spectroscopy. All you need is the right flame. The instrument, called the atomic absorption spectrophotometer, works perfectly in atomic emission mode. There is no separate instrument for Flame-AES.

The flames are quite "cold" for non-metals like sulfur, carbon, nitrogen, and noble gases. ICP also works poorly for non-metals.

  • $\begingroup$ So, if I get it right, you'd say most elements are detectable by both flame and plasma? About the searching: sadly enough, in corona times and being a student without research budget, physical libraries and paying content are not really an option. Thanks for the help! $\endgroup$
    – WilGos
    Aug 6 '20 at 15:02
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Yes, most of the metals and some non-metals can be detected. Search the term Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer Cookbook on the web. It should be the first result. This is a thick book available on the web for free from companies. It lists the entire set of elements and the conditions under which they can be analyzed by flame atomic absorption AND emission. $\endgroup$
    – M. Farooq
    Aug 6 '20 at 16:09
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    $\begingroup$ @WilGos Your capital is diversified, and money is only one form. An additional your experience. If school/library/institutes in your area are not an option now, the combination of "atomic emission spectroscopy" "detection limit" in google still yields, for example, the Chemistry Libre Texts (chem.libretexts.org) including the AnaChem by Harvey with chapter 10.7 about AES (chem.libretexts.org/Bookshelves/Analytical_Chemistry/…). By the way, last update: Jan 7, 2020. $\endgroup$
    – Buttonwood
    Aug 6 '20 at 17:05

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