ICP-MS: Advice from the Pros

Cleaning the X-lens assembly

First, there is a video that came with the instrument that shows how to disassemble, reassemble, and clean the lens assembly. That’s all fine, but the recommended cleaning procedure mostly involves fancy yellow and blue sandpaper. That was hard work and took a long time. In desperation, I contacted the PLASMACHEM-L@LISTSERV.SYR.EDU list server. Based on replies kindly sent by Javier Seravalli and Richard Pappas, I have abstracted this sequence of things to try:

  1. DI water and 2% Citranox or Barkeeper’s Friend in an ultrasonic cleaner.
  2. 1% nitric acid and 1% hydrochloric acid in an ultrasonic cleaner.
  3. Scrub with Barkeeper’s Friend, using a watery paste and Q-tips.
  4. If all else fails, use the fancy sandpaper like the video instructions say.

Always finish by ultrasonic cleaning in DI water, followed by careful drying and reassembly with gloves.

Sorry there isn’t more here.