IRMS Applications
    in Research

A world of applications infographic

IRMS covers a whole world of applications, which is why we enjoy working so closely with our customers. Using the publications in our citation database, we have generated a fascinating infographic to show how our IRMS instruments are being used across such a broad range of exciting applications. 

Despite the huge number of citations in the database, our bespoke system allows you to streamline your search results with the help of filters for isotopes, applications and products; helping you to quickly reach the data that is relevant to you and your research. Search results can swiftly be emailed to you and your colleagues for later use.

The database continues to grow with new customer citations being added regularly as our customers publish their latest IRMS research. The database represents only a sample of the total number of citations for our products so we don’t recommend using the database as your sole resource for literature reviews.

Which stable isotopes are our customers analyzing?

Another Breakdown of the Elements - isotope graph

Carbon stable isotope analysis is clearly a major focus for our customers due to the ubiquity of the element as a fundamental building block for organic life. Exploring the isotope fractionation caused by the various chemical, physical and biological processes that control the global carbon cycle is a fundamental goal of our customers. 

Carbon stable isotope analysis is also a relatively simple analytical technique since carbon based compounds are generally easy to quantitatively convert to CO2 via oxidative combustion. Since carbon is usually the predominant element in an organic material there is more sample carbon available for analysis compare to less abundant elements such as sulfur. 

Sulfur stable isotope analysis is the least employed technique since it is only viable when using an elemental analyser system (EA-IRMS). However, our unique elemental analyser systems make sulfur isotope analysis extremely simple and our customers are starting to generate interesting research in sulfur isotope dynamics.

Which inlet systems do our customers use?

Inlet Systems Pie Graph Breakdown

Elemental analysis coupled to a stable isotope ratio mass spectrometer (EA-IRMS) is a highly versatile system for converting native sample material to a gaseous product which can be introduced in to the IRMS. With our unique elemental analysers which are capable of multi-elemental isotope ratio analysis, our systems are used for for simultaneous nitrogen and carbon, or even nitrogen, carbon and sulfur isotope analysis which is very useful for a broad range of applications. 

Gas & Headspace analysis refers to the isotope analysis of samples such as waters, gases & carbonates prepared in to a septum sealed vial. This is the reason that oxygen isotopes are the most prevalent technique since oxygen isotopes are of interest in groundwaters, fruit juices, carbonate materials and in nitrate analysis in environmental applications. This range of applications demonstrates how Gas & Headspace analysis is of great importance to our customers and why our new iso FLOW sample handling platform is such an exciting prospect. 

What applications are our customers pursuing?

Elementar Products Possible Applications

The breadth of applications for stable isotope techniques is why we are so passionate about our IRMS instruments. The IRMS technique was originally developed by geologists in the 1960's to investigate sedimentary rock materials, and from there the technique has moved throughout numerous "Earth Sciences" and more recently to more "Forensic Science" applications thanks to the development of Continuous Flow IRMS in the 1980's. 

IRMS is a valuable technique which is uniquely able to answer specific questions regarding the origin and formation of a sample by measuring the minuscule variations in isotope abundance between two chemically identical materials. It is this which allows the growth of mountain ranges to be determined, the temperature of the worlds oceans through geologic time to be calculated, complex marine ecosystems to be understood, or which athletes may have take testosterone supplements to boost their performance.  

All of these techniques lead to a whole world of applications in which our customers are performing exceptional research and it is clear to see how IRMS is helping to improve our understanding of the world in which we live.

Where are our customers publishing their work?

Top Ten Journals Bar Graph

Our customers are using our innovative IRMS instruments and their powerful expertise to perform new and exciting research to expand the collective knowledge across many applications. Publishing this research in high impact peer-review journals provides a crucial voice with which our customers are able to demonstrate their valuable work. 

Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry (RCMS) is the journal with the most citations of our IRMS instruments since this journal deals with new technologies across the field of mass spectrometry and demonstrates that the field of IRMS is still developing into new areas and the technique continues to grow.

The array of journals also demonstrates the depth of which IRMS is applied to geo-based sciences with a number of high impact journals such as Earth and Planetary Science Letters, Geochemica Et Cosmochimica Acta and Scientific Reports containing citaitons. Of interest is also that the Journal of Archaeological Science and Food Chemistry has a large number of citations showing the diversity of applications.