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Batch analysis of microplastics in water using multi-angle static light scattering and chemometric methods

Journal Contribution - Journal Article

Size and concentration are two important parameters for the analysis of microplastics (MPs) in water. The analytical tools reported so far extract this information in a single-particle analysis mode, dramatically increasing the analysis time. Here, we present a combination of multi-angle static light scattering technique, called "Goniophotometry", with chemometric multivariate data processing for the batch analysis of size and concentration of MPs in water. Nine different sizes of polystyrene (PS) MPs with diameters between 500 nm and 20 mu m are investigated in two different scenarios with uniform (monodisperse) and non-uniform (polydisperse) size distribution of MPs, respectively. It is shown that Principal Component Analysis (PCA) can reveal the existing relationship between the scattering data of mono- and polydisperse samples according to the size distribution of MPs in mixtures. Therefore, a Linear Discriminant Analysis (LDA) model is constructed based on the PCA of scattering data of PS monodisperse samples and is subsequently employed to classify the size of MPs not only in unknown mono- and polydisperse PS samples, but also for other types of MPs such as Polyethylene (PE) and Polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA). When the size of MPs is classified, their concentration is measured using a simple linear fit. Finally, a Linear Least Square (LLS) model is used to evaluate the reproducibility of the measurements.
Journal: Anal. Meth.
ISSN: 1759-9660
Issue: 39
Volume: 14
Pages: 3840-3849
Publication year:2022