Application Brief

Determination of Elemental Impurities in Lithium Battery Cathode Materials using NexION 1000 ICP-MS


The quality of the cathode material of a lithium ion (Li-ion) battery, especially the ratio of the primary elements and the concentrations of impurities, has great impact on its charging and discharging performance. Therefore, it is very important to prevent the introduction of impurities in the raw materials.

Although ICP-OES has been the method of choice for the battery industry to determine the ratios of primary elements and the concentrations of impurities, impurity control is becoming more stringent with the new development of battery technologies, leading to the need for ever-decreasing detection limits for metal impurities. As an excellent alternative, ICP-MS has the advantage of having extremely high sensitivity and excellent detection limits.

This work reports the determination of Cr, Cu, Fe, Zn, and Pb impurities in lithium battery cathode materials using PerkinElmer’s NexION® 1000 ICP-MS, leveraging a host of proprietary features that come together to deliver excellent matrix tolerance and interference removal, as required by the battery industry.