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Arsenic Speciation

Arsenic Speciation for FGD Wastewaters

Arsenic Speciation

Arsenic, a naturally occurring element, exists in both organic and inorganic forms.  The most common forms of arsenic in the environment are arsenite and arsenate.  In its organic form, arsenic is naturally present in coal and, as a result, can be present in the residual products of coal combustion such as fly ash, bottom ash and flue gas solids.  Understanding which forms of arsenic are present in these residuals, as well as the potential for leaching, can be useful in determining beneficial use applications.

In addition to beneficial use applications, arsenic is also regulated in the utility sector’s FGD scrubber wastewater under the Effluent Limitations Guidelines (ELG).  To ensure the benefits of FGD scrubber techniques are realized, while also limiting the discharge of arsenic into the surrounding environment, many operators use arsenic speciation as part of their testing program.  Understanding the chemical composition of the wastewater provides the foundation for removal of arsenic through the process of converting sparingly soluble arsenate into water soluble arsenite.

TestAmerica’s Arsenic Speciation Capabilities

TestAmerica utilizes a multi-step analytical approach to the determination of arsenite and arsenate in environmental samples.  The unique capability pairs high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) technology with Inductively Coupled Plasma – Mass Spectrometry (ICP-MS) to identify and quantify arsenic species.  Once the arsenic speciation is completed, and arsenite and arsenate are independently quantified, treatment plans can be executed to minimize the potential discharge of water-soluable arsenite into the surrounding environment.

In water samples, TestAmerica can achieve the following reporting limits with our arsenic speciation methodology:

Analyte

CAS #

RL (ug/L)

Arsenite       As+3

15502-74-6

2

Arsenate      As+5

15584-04-0

2

For more detailed information on TestAmerica's Arsenic Speciation capabilities, please click here to download our brochure.