Fundamental ICP-MS

1 Day Course

This one-day course introduces delegates to the fundamental concepts and principles associated with ICP-MS. Topics covered allow the ICP-MS user to gain a useful insight into the operating principles of the instrument.

  • We limit numbers to 20 per course so that each delegate gets the opportunity to ask questions and fully participate in tutorial exercises 
  • As this course is delivered on-site we can design the course material to suit your specific training needs
  • Customisable written assessments are available if required

Contact [email protected] for more information.


Course Overview

A comprehensive one day course designed to increase expertise and optimise results for all users of ICP-MS.

Understanding sample introduction and optimisation of instrument performance are important subject areas within this one-day course. Interactive Training sessions and tutorial exercises are used to reinforce key learning points. 

Who is this course for

This course is ideally tailored towards either the experienced user who is looking for a refresher course, or towards a new user who is looking for an introduction to the analytical technique.

Previous knowledge

Background knowledge of ICP-OES or Mass Spectrometry may be useful but not necessary, as all the essentials are covered in the course. Previous experience using ICP-MS equipment can be beneficial.

What you will learn

  • How the ICP source fragments in a different way to other MS techniques, offering a complementary view of the chemicals being analysed
  • Why ICP-MS is particularly suitable for isotope ratio studies
  • How ICP-MS can be used for the analysis of ultra-trace metal elements (0.0005-100ppb)
  • Application of ICP-MS to non-metallic elements (e.g. S, P)


Course Outline

Introduction to IPC/MS

  • What can ICP-MS do?
  • Schematic design

Inductively Coupled Plasmas 

  • Plasma formation
  • Generators
  • Load coils
  • Torches
  • Plasma configuration

Gaseous Sample Introduction

  • Gaseous samples
  • Hydride generation

Liquid Sample Introduction

  • The cross-flow nebuliser
  • The concentric nebuliser
  • The Babington nebuliser 
  • Spray chambers

Solid Samples 

  • Ablation methods

The Mass Spectrometer

  • The vacuum and interface systems
  • Ion lenses 
  • Photon stops
  • Off-Axis deflection
  • Space Charge effect

Quadrupole Mass Analysers

  • Quadrupole theory
  • Scanning/Selected Ion Monitoring
  • Tuning and calibration/Plasma parameters


  • Continuous Dynode Electron Multiplier
  • Discrete Dynode Electron Multiplier
  • The Faraday Cup