A fully automated method for the preparation of surface water specimens for total inorganic iron analysis by atomic absorption spectroscopy and a method for the aspiration of prepared specimens are described. The automated specimen preparation technique is compared with a standard method used for total iron analysis and is applied to iron, manganese, zinc, and copper. Standard Technicon AutoAnalyzer components and standard atomic absorption spectrophotometers were used. The automated specimen preparation technique will handle 60 samples per hour and is totally flexible as to sampling rates, sample ratios, added chemicals, and time for particulate settling.

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