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Chemistry213SectionA02



PotassiumDeterminationinBananasbyAtomicAbsorption


Abstract:Thethemeandobjectiveofthisexperimentwastodeterminetheamountofpotassiumina
Chiquita TMbananausingAtomicAbsorption(AAS).Toaccomplishthis,potassiumwasextractedfroma
banana using a 120mL mortar and pestle. Potassium exists in ionic form in bananas initially therefore
thesimpleadditionofwaterwillaidinextractingtheion.Hydrochloricacidwasaddedaswelltoattract
thepotassiumions(thepotassiumisattractedtothenegativechlorideions).Byaddingthesetwothings
inconjunctionwithrigorousshaking,thepotassiumcontainingsupernatantwasfilteredout,obtained,
and diluted for measurement. A series of potassium standards were prepared as well. Simple dilution
factorswerecalculatedtocreatesevenstandards(1ppm7ppm)froma100ppmK+Stocksolution.These
standards were measured in the AAS machine to create a calibration curve that was utilized in
quantitatively determining the amount of potassium in bananas. The unknown banana solution was
then measured in the AAS, and from the absorbance of the measurement the concentration was
obtainedusingthecalibrationcurve.Inordertoeliminateanychemicalinterference,standardaddition
wasperformed.Thiswasdonebyaddingaknownamountofstandardtounknownpotassiumsolutions
toaccountfortheinterference,andthenrunningthemthroughtheAASmachine.Theresultswerethen
comparedtothecalibrationcurvepreviouslymadeinordertocalculatetheamountofpotassiumthat
existswithoutinterference.Thisstepwasnecessarytoobtainaccuratepotassiumamounts.Themotive
behindthisexperimentwastoquantitativelydeterminetheamountofpotassiuminordertocompareit
to the amount humans need to survive. Potassium uptake is crucial in many biological processes;
therefore it is imperative that humans obtain the rights amounts. Can a substantial amount of
potassium be obtained from eating bananas? In this experiment, 174.5218 0.04598mg K was
determined to be present in the banana. Humans require 4700mg of potassium per day (Jones). One
would have to eat approximately 27 bananas to obtain the daily amount of potassium needed for
survival.Thereforetheresultsshowthatbananasarenotasignificantsourceofpotassium.

Introduction:Potassiumiscrucialformanybiologicalprocessesthatoccurinhumans.Itisessentialfor
survivalanddeficiencycancauseseriousrisks.Potassiumisfundamentallyinvolvedinamassive
amountofbodyprocesses,suchasfluidbalance,proteinsynthesis,nerveconduction,energy
production,musclecontraction,synthesisofnucleicacids,andcontrolofheartbeat.Inmanyofitsroles,
potassiumisopposedbysodiumandthetwopositiveionsarejointlybalancedbythenegativeion,
chloride(naturalhealthinformationcentre.com).Becausepotassiumissocrucialtohumanlife,itis
essentialtomakesureonesintakeofpotassiumissufficientforhumansurvival.Duetothisconcept,
theamountofpotassiuminbananaswasdeterminedtocalculateifabananaisanadequateamountof
potassiumforhumansurvival.Humansrequire4700mgofpotassiumperday(Jones).Inorderto
determinetheamountofpotassiuminbananasFlameAtomicAbsorptionwasused.Thefirststepwas
toextractthepotassiumfromthebanana.Thiswasdonebycrushingitwithamortarandpestle,the
additionofwater,andtheadditionof.1Mhydrochloricacid.Potassiumexistsinionicforminbananas,
thereforetheadditionofwaterandhydrochloricacidcausedanattractionbetweenthenegativeions
andthepositivepotassiumions,allowingittobeseparatedfromthebananainthesupernatant.
Vigorousshakingwasappliedaswelltoensurecompleteextraction.Afterextraction,thesupernatant
wasdiluted.Aftermakingtheunknownpotassium/bananasolution,aseriesofstandardpotassium
solutionsweresynthesizedinordertoconstructacalibrationcurvenecessaryforconcentration
determination.Thesestandardsolutionsandtheunknownpotassium/bananasolutionwerethen
measuredintheAASmachine.Inflameatomicabsorptionspectroscopyaliquidsampleisaspirated
andmixedasanaerosolwithcombustiblegasses(acetyleneandairoracetyleneandnitrousoxide.)The
mixtureisignitedinaflameoftemperaturerangingfrom2100to2800degreesC(dependingonthefuel
gasused.)Duringcombustion,atomsoftheelementofinterestinthesamplearereducedtotheatomic
state.Alightbeamfromalampwhosecathodeismadeoftheelementbeingdeterminedispassed
throughtheflameintoamonochronometeranddetector.Free,unexcitedgroundstateatomsofthe
elementabsorblightatcharacteristicwavelengths;thisreductionofthelightenergyattheanalytical
wavelengthisameasureoftheamountoftheelementinthesample(Ecology).Becausethepotassium
isaspirated,itisinitspurestform,thereforeproducingapreciselyaccuratemeasurementof
absorbance.Duetothemanycomponentsofbananas,matrixeffectswereanticipatedinthis
measurement.Therefore,standardadditionwasperformedtoworkwithinterferenceswithoutthe
scopeofremovingtheinterferingspecies.Standardadditionisastesttechniqueforinvestigating
suspicioustestresults.Toaccomplishthis,thepotassiumstandardsolutionswereaddedtothe
unknownpotassium/bananasolutioninvaryingamounts(spiking).Then,fromtheincreaseinsignalthe
amountofanalyteoriginallypresentinthesamplewasdeduced.Thisamountwascalculatedtobe
174.5218 0.04598mg K .Aspreviouslystated,humansneed4700mgofpotassiumperdayinorder
tosurvivewithgoodhealth.Thisexperimenthasproventhateventhoughtbananascontainpotassium;
theydonotsufficeforthepotassiumintakethatisnecessaryforhumans(unlessonewastoeat27
bananasperday).Thereforepotassiumisobtainedalsothroughmanyotherfoods.

Experiment:TheapparatusfortheexperimentincludesthePerkinElmer2100AtomicAbsorption
Spectrometer,andaHollowCathodeLampfortheelementtobeanalyzed.


AMettlerAE260DeltaRangebalancewasalsousedtotakemeasurementsofthepotassiumchloride,
andthesampleofbanana.Thepotassiumchloridewasusedtomakethestandardsolutionsinorderto
constructthecalibrationcurve.ThepotassiumchlorideusedwasFisherScientificsS272500.
Hydrochloricacidwasalsousedinconjunctionwithwatertoaideinextractionofthepotassiumfrom
thebanana.TheHydrochloricacidthatwasusedwasBDHARISTARCAS#7647010.A120mLmortar
andpestlewasusedtoaidinextractionaswell.ThebananausedinthisexperimentwasaChiquitaTM
bananathatweighed132.382g.

Procedure:Thefirststepinthisexperimentincludesthesynthesisofthepotassiumstandardsolution.
Thiswasaccomplishedfirstbydissolving.1151gofKClin1Lofwatertoproducea100ppmsolution.
Fromthissolutionsevenstandardsolutionswerepreparedusingdilutionfactors.Thesolution
concentrationsconsistedof1ppm,2ppm,3ppm,4ppm,5ppm,6ppm,and7ppm.Tomakeeachstandard
solution,forexamplethe1ppmsolution,onemilliliterofthe100ppmstandardsolutionwastransferred
toa100mLflask,usinga1mLpipette,andthendilutedtothe100mLmark.Thesameprocesswasused
fortherestofthestandards,except2mLofpotassiumstandardwasusedinthe2ppm,3mLinthe
3ppm,andsoon.Aftertheconstructionofthesevenstandards,theunknownsolutionwasmade.The
entirebananawasweighed(minusthepeel),andthenfourgramsofitwasmeasuredoutforanalysis.
Thiswasthencrushedusingamortarandpestlewith32mLofwater(1:8dilution)forextraction.25mL
ofHClwasthenaddedtoa25mLaliquotofthedilutedbananasolutionforextractionaswell(1:16
dilution).Thesolutionwasshakenvigorouslyfortenminutes.Thesolutionwasthenfilteredanddiluted
1:62.5.Theunknownsolutionswerethenmeasuredalongwiththestandardstocreateacalibration
curvefordeterminationofpotassiumcontentintheunknownsolutions.Afterthesemeasurements
weretakenstandardadditionwasthendonetoaccountforanyunknownmatrixeffects.Thiswasdone
byvaryingtheamountsof100ppmpotassiumstandardsolutionin100mLvolumetricflasks.Therewere
sevenflasks,andthefirstonehad1mLof100ppmpotassiumsolution,thesecondhad2mL,thethird
had3mLetc.Eachsolutionhadaconstantamountofunknownbananasolutionadded(2mL)andthen
theyweredilutedtothe100mark.Thesesolutionsarereferredtoasspiked.Aftermakingthe
solutionsforstandardaddition,theywereallrunthroughtheAASmachineinordertoconstructa
standardadditioncurve.Thiscurvewasusedinconjunctionwiththecalibrationcurvetodeterminethe
amountofpotassiumwithoutinterference.
ResultsandDiscussion:

ConcentrationofStandard(ppm) AbsorbanceValues
1 0.0147
2 0.0545

3 0.0977
4 0.1405
5 0.1546
6 0.1994
7 0.2338

UnknownPotassium/BananaSolution Trial1 Trial2 Trial3 Average:


(absorbance) (absorbance) (absorbance)
Solution1 .1417 .1463 .1448 .1443
Solution2 .1481 .1532 .1481 .1498
Solution3 .1440 .1471 .1452 .1454
Mean=.1465Standarddeviation=.003

CalibrationCurve
PotassiumStandards
0.25
y=0.0359x 0.0155
0.2

0.15
Absorbance
0.1 Series1
Linear(Series1)
0.05

0
0 2 4 6 8
Concentrationofstandard(ppm)


AnovaTable:
Coefficient Standard Lower Upper Lower Upper
s Error tStat Pvalue 95% 95% 95.0% 95.0%
0.06736
Intercept 0.01554 0.006676 2.32819 3 0.0327 0.001618 0.0327 0.001618
XVariable 24.0202
1 0.035857 0.001493 9 2.33E06 0.03202 0.039694 0.03202 0.039694

ConcentrationCalculationbeforeStandardAddition:
Y=mx+b
Y=0.0359x0.0155
X=concentration(ppm)
Y=Absorbance
.
X= =.43175ppm
.
. .
PropagationofError:X e =
. .

. .
=x e
. .

X=.43175 %e %e

X=.43175 43.071 4.1588

X=. .

DilutionFactor:
.43175.18682ppm 8=3.454 .187ppm
3.454 .187ppm 16 55.264 .187ppm
55.264 .187ppm 62.5 3454.0 .2ppm

3454.0 .2ppm= 10
L

X=3.454 . mg

Accountingforentirebanana:
Entirebananaweighs:132.382g
SampleSizeWeighs:4.0906g
.
32.362
.

Therefore,32.362 . . . . inoneBanana


95%ConfidenceInterval:
ts
mean
n
. .
111.778 =111.788 . K+


Thetruevalueofpotassiuminabananaisapproximately385mg,thereforetheamountofpotassiumcalculated
doesnotfallinthisrange.Althoughthisistrueonemusttakeintoaccountthesizeofthebanana.385mgisfora
regularsizedbananawhilethebananasizeusedinthisexperimentwasquitesmallaccountingforthesignificant
lesservalueobtained.Also,thiscalculationwasmadebeforestandardadditionthereforetheinterferencehas
causedasmallerpotassiumvalue.Anotherfactorforthesmallamountofpotassiumcalculatedcouldhave
occurredintheextractionphase.Theextractionmaynothavebeenefficientthereforeaccountingforthelow
amountofpotassiumfound.
ConcentrationCalculationwithStandardAddition:
Concentration(ppm) AbsorbanceValues
1 0.0456
2 0.0778
3 0.1353
4 0.1548
5 0.1761
6 0.2113
7 0.2399

StandardAdditionCurve
PotassiuminBananas
0.3
y=0.0318x+0.0214
0.25
0.2
0.15
Absorbance Series1
0.1
Linear(Series1)
0.05 Linear(Series1)
0
2 0.05 0 2 4 6 8

Concentration(ppm)

Coefficient Standard Lower Upper Lower Upper


s Error tStat Pvalue 95% 95% 95.0% 95.0%
2.47284 0.05633
Intercept 0.021443 0.008671 1 3 0.00085 0.043733 0.00085 0.043733
XVariable 16.4059
1 0.031811 0.001939 7 1.54E05 0.026826 0.036795 0.026826 0.036795

Slope=0.031811(0.001939)
YIntercept=0.021443(0.008671)

b e
x e
m e
0=(0.031811 0.001939)x+(0.0214430.008671)
. .
x= % %
. .
x=.6741.04598ppm

DilutionFactor:
.6741.04598ppm 8=5.3928 .04598ppm
5.3928 .04598ppm 16 86.2848 .04598ppm
86.2848 .04598 62.5 5392.8 .05ppm

5392.8 .05ppm= 10
L

X=5.3928 0.04598mg
Accountingforentirebanana:
Entirebananaweighs:132.382g
SampleSizeWeighs:4.0906g
.
32.362
.

Therefore,32.362 . . . . inoneBanana
95%ConfidenceInterval:
ts
mean
n
. .
174.5218 =174.5218 . mg


Thetruevalueofpotassiuminabananaisapproximately385mg,thereforetheamountofpotassiumina
bananadoesnotfallintherangecalculated.Althoughthisistrueonemusttakeintoaccountthesizeofthe
banana.385mgisforaregularsizedbananawhilethebananasizeusedinthisexperimentwasquitesmall
accountingforthesignificantlesservalueobtained.Anotherfactorforthesmallamountofpotassiumcalculated
couldhaveoccurredintheextractionphase.Theextractionmaynothavebeenefficientthereforeaccountingfor
thelowamountofpotassiumfound.








DetectionLimit
DetectionLimits(DLs)areestimatesofconcentrationsatwhichwecanbefairlycertainthatthe
compoundispresent.
.
= =.1249ppm
.
Duetothefactthatthevaluesobtainedfortheexperimentarelargerthanthisnumberonecanassume
precisemeasurements.

LowerLimitofQuantitation
LowerLimitofQuantitationisthesmallestamountthatcanbemeasuredwithreasonableaccuracy.
.
= =.4164ppm
.
Duetothefactthatbothsetsofresultsrevealconcentrationslargerthantheconcentrationabove,one
canassumereasonableaccuracy.

Conclusion:Theamountofpotassiumfoundtobeinasmallersizedbananawascalculatedtobe
174.5218 0.04598mgafteraccountingforerrorinthematrixbyperformingstandardaddition.
Althoughthetruevalueofpotassiuminbananas(approximately385mg)doesnotfallwithinthe95%
confidenceintervalrange(whichwas:174.5218 .08447mg),onecanassumethisexperimentrelevant
duetothefluctuatingsizesofbananas.Theaveragebananacontainingabout385mgofpotassiumis
muchlargerthanthebananausedinthisexperiment.Fromthisonecansaythatthebananausedinthis
experimentwouldnotbeasignificantsourceofpotassiumforhumansurvival.Onewouldneedto
obtainothersourcesofpotassiuminordertoreachthe4700mgquota.



WorksCited

Ecology,Instituteof."MetalsAnalysisbyFlameAtomicAbsorptionSpectrophotometry."22July1997.
UniversityofGeorgiaInstituteofEcology.9December2008<www.uga.edu>.

Jones,Dr.W.Gifford."CanadaFreePress."1February2005.Howmuchwater,potassium,andsaltdo
Weneed?5December2008<www.canadafreepress.com>.

"naturalhealthinformationcentre.com."2007.PotassiumAKeyFactorinMaintainingHealth.5
December2008<www.naturalhealthinformationcentre.com>.