Automated analysis of 15N and 14C in biological samples
An automated method for the simultaneous analysis of total N, total C, 15N and 14C in small plant and soil samples is described. A commercial C-N analyser - continuous flow isotope ratio mass spectrometer (ANCA-MS) has been extended to also measure CO2 and collect 14CO2 produced by sample combustion. Samples containing 20 - 200 μg N and up to 5 mg C can be analysed directly with no sample preparation other than drying and fine grinding. The precision of total elemental analysis is comparable to that by conventional methods. The average standard deviation of 15N analyses of plant material at ...