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Impact of air, laser pulse width and fluence on U–Pb dating of zircons by LA-ICPMS

Thompson, JM, Meffre, S ORCID: 0000-0003-2741-6076 and Danyushevsky, L ORCID: 0000-0003-4050-6850 2018 , 'Impact of air, laser pulse width and fluence on U–Pb dating of zircons by LA-ICPMS' , Journal of Analytical Atomic Spectrometry, vol. 33, no. 2 , pp. 221-230 , doi: 10.1039/C7JA00357A.

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The accuracy of zircon U–Pb dating by LA-ICPMS is limited by matrix effects related to differences in U–Pb fractionation between an unknown and the calibration standard. Zircon radiation dose has a strong influence on the ablation rate, which in turn affects the amount of U–Pb fractionation and subsequent age calculations. Presented in this study is a previously unrecognized source of uncertainty in LA-ICPMS U–Pb ages due to variations of atmospheric air absorbed onto the surfaces of samples. Laser properties such as fluence (J cm−2) will change the laser ablation rate, and therefore the degree of U–Pb fractionation, and this can change the amount of zircon matrix effect. To improve the accuracy of U–Pb dating by LA-ICPMS, a systematic error component related to radiation dose needs to be included, or alternatively a correction to U–Pb dates can be applied as a function of radiation dose relative to the primary calibration standard. This study proposes a method to calculate a correction factor for the zircon matrix effect by measurement of several zircon reference materials with varying radiation dosages.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Thompson, JM and Meffre, S and Danyushevsky, L
Keywords: zircon, dating
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Analytical Atomic Spectrometry
Publisher: Royal Soc Chemistry
ISSN: 0267-9477
DOI / ID Number: 10.1039/C7JA00357A
Copyright Information:

© The Royal Society of Chemistry 2018

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