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Feasibility of Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS) for Classification of Sea Salts

Volume 66, Number 3 (March 2011) Page 262-271

MAN MINH TAN, SHENG CUI, JONGHYUN YOO, SONG-HEE HAN, KYUNG-SIK HAM, SANG-HO NAM*, and YONGHOON LEE*


We have investigated the feasibility of laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) as a fast, reliable classification tool for sea salts. For 11 kinds of sea salts, potassium (K), magnesium (Mg), calcium (Ca), and aluminum (Al) concentrations were measured by inductively coupled plasma‚Äďatomic emission spectroscopy (ICP-AES), and the LIBS spectra were recorded in the narrow wavelength region between 760 and 800 nm where K (I), Mg (I), Ca (II), Al (I), and cyanide (CN) band emissions are observed. The ICP-AES measurements revealed that the K, Mg, Ca, and Al concentrations varied significantly with the provenance of each salt. The relative intensities of the K (I), Mg (I), Ca (II), and Al (I) peaks observed in the LIBS spectra are consistent with the results using ICP-AES. The principal component analysis of the LIBS spectra provided the score plot with quite a high degree of clustering. This indicates that classification of sea salts by chemometric analysis of LIBS spectra is very promising. Classification models were developed by partial least squares discriminant analysis (PLS-DA) and evaluated. In addition, the Al (I) peaks enabled us to discriminate between different production methods of the salts.

Index Headings: Laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy; LIBS; Sea salts; Classification; Chemometrics.