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Approaching Single Atom Detection with Atomic Fluorescence in a Glow Discharge Atom Reservoir

Volume 43, Number 5 (July 1989) Page 873-876

Smith, B.W.; Womack, J.B.; Omenetto, N.; Winefordner, J.D.

A commercial hollow cathode lamp is used as an atom reservoir for the atomic fluorescence of lead excited by a copper laser pumped dye laser. The glow discharge source is nearly an ideal atom cell for such measurements, having very low background emission and excellent atomization characteristics. A detection limit of 1.8 ag of lead within the laser beam is easily obtained.