What Can DC Polarography Offer Today

Petr Zuman*

Department of Chemistry, Box 5810, Clarkson University, Potsdam, NY 13699-5810, USA
*Corresponding author: Tel. +1-315-268-2340, fax 1-315-268-6610
*Corresponding author: E-mail: zumanp@clarkson.edu

Advantages of uses of DC polarography in determination of inorganic and organic species (such as speed of analyzes, highly reproducible and reliable results, good theoretical background, establishment of the degree of conjugation in organic species, possibility to determine the oxidation states in metal ions, lower costs, no use of organic solvents, wide range of heavy metal ions and of reducible organic compounds that can be determined) as well as limitations (lack of qualified supervising personnel, fewer species undergoing oxidations) are stated. Examples of recent successful applications are given: (1) analyses of drugs containing a single physiologically active and electroactive species; (2) investigations in non-homogeneous systems, such as of binding of heavy metal ions, N-nitrosamines and various pesticides in suspensions of lignin; or of formation of slightly soluble small aggregates and well soluble large aggregates in interactions of heavy metal ions with bile salts; (3) determination of equilibrium and rate constants for equilibria occurring in the bulk of the solution and of rate constants of establishment of acid-base and hydration dehydration equilibria that are perturbed by electrolysis in the vicinity of the electrode. It is possible to follow this type of fast reactions, with rate constants in the range between 1 × 104 L mol–1 s–1 and 1 × 1010 L mol–1 s–1.

Keywords: DC polarography, metal ions, drugs, kinetics rate constants