cod. 23649

Academic year 2022/23
2° year of course - Second semester
Academic discipline
Chimica analitica (CHIM/01)
Attività formative affini o integrative
Type of training activity
55 hours
of face-to-face activities
6 credits
hub: PARMA
course unit

Learning objectives

At the end of classes the student will be able to:-Understanding and knowledge classical and innovative analytical methods fot the various analytical matrices analysis-evaluating the peculiar chemical analyses to be requested and/or performed to achieve an environmental problem solution-analyzing in the right way the data supplied after a chemical analysis-planning or performing group experiments-correctly communicating using reports problems by using true and objective data


Knowledge of basic chemistry and environmental chemistry

Course unit content

analytical methods classification: classical and instrumental methods, according to time, cost and performance, according matrix analytes and level of concentration-information that can be achieved from various analytical techniques-use of the analytical techniques as a function of various environmental samples and of the information that could be obtained-the whole analytical process starting from sampling to the final report- the evaluation of data quality- the right communication of data

Full programme

The course is divided in 3 parts: in the first one the principal items of instrumental analytical chemistry will be debated in a simple way, in the second part the applications to the main environmental matrices of analytical chemistry will be described, in the third part a visit to an ARPAE air monitoring station will be planned and some laboratory experiences will be carried out.
1st Part
Introduction to instrumental analytical methods. Instrumental analytical techniques classification. Choice of an analytical method. Method validation and quality parameters definition according to the European guidelines: linearity, detection limit, sensitivity, selectivity, precision, accuracy. Methods for concentration determination; external standard calibration, standard addition calibration, use of internal standard.
Elemental spectroscopic techniques: atomic absorption spectroscopy. Atomic spectra origination, instrumentation: sources, atomization systems; Atomic emission spectroscopy, instrumentation, ICP source, high resolution monochromators, detectors; plasma source mass spectrometry, instrumentation, the interference problem, qualitative and quantitative analysis. Techniques comparison and their practical application.
Sample treatment for metals determination at low concentration.
Molecular spectroscopic techniques: UV-Vis spectroscopy, spectra origination; correlation between electronic transitions and spectral zones, relationship between electronic structure and spectral bands, instrumentation: sources, monochromators, detectors, diode array detector, absorbance and transmittance definition, Lambert-Beer law and its application to quantitative analysis.; molecular fluorescence spectroscopy highlights; IR molecular spectroscopy, spectra origination, vibration normal modes and absorption zones relationship, instrumentation, differences between dispersive spectrophotometer and the FT-IR one, application for substances characterization.
Separative techniques: chromatography principles, gas and liquid chromatography, gas-chromatography: gas-solid and gas- liquid interactions, instrumentation, injectors, capillary columns, main detectors highlights, isothermal and temperature programmed analisis, internal standard method for quantitative determination; liquid chromatography, separation mechanism on liquid and solid stationary phases; adsorption, partition, ion exchange, size exclusion chromatographies; instrumentation: columns, pumps, detectors, isocratic and gradient eluition.
Sample treatment for organic substances determination.
Mass Spectrometry: instrumentation, ionization systems, magnetic sector analyzer, quadrupoles, time-of-flight analyzer, low and high resolution systems, applications, coupling mass spectrometry with gas and liquid chromatography.
2nd Part
Air matrix: sampling and analysis of atmospheric pollutants, active and passive sampling, particulate matter, properties, origin and health effect of particulate, PM10 and PM2,5, automatic samplers, automatic analyzer for SO2, NOx, O3, CO, monitoring stations, sampling and analysis of the main organic pollutants.
Soil and water matrix: pollutants classification, contaminant properties (thermodynamics, transportation, etc), pollutants mobility, sampling methods for soil, water and sediments, sample treatment, official methods for water examination (O2, COD, TOC, alkalinity, hardness, Kubel method), anions determination, metals: chemical form and oxidation state, element speciation, low concentration metal determination and speciation, sequential extractions, Tessier method and significate, sampling and analysis of main organic pollutants, surfactants, emerging contaminants (endocrine disruptors, estogen-mimetics, cosmetics and solar lotions, PFASs)
3rd Part
Visit to a ARPAE air monitoring station
Guided tour of instrumental analytical labs
Individual lab experience: KUBEL method
Group lab experience: determination of total and extractable metals in a soil sample.


C. Baird, M. Cann Chimica Ambientale terza edizione, ed. Zanichelli, ISBN 978-88-08-17378-2.
D.C. Harris, Chimica Analitica Quantitativa terza edizione, ed. Zanichelli, ISBN:978-88-08-82105-8

Teaching methods

Frontal classes. During classes comment and solution to actual environmental problems will be proposed and collegially discussed. Moreover official analysis methods and relevant scientific papers will be debated.
It is part of the course and mandatory, to attend 2 laboratories and a visit to an air quality monitoring facility

Assessment methods and criteria

verbal examination on the basis of 3 different questions ranging the full course content. If the candidate will face difficulties, more questions will be proposed up to a maximum of 5. The final score will range from 30 magna cum laude to 18, according to the candidate comprehension and preparation

Other information