Mass Spectrometry

Mass Spectrometry

An instrument called a mass spectrometer is used to calculate relative atomic mass.

In a mass spectrometer, atoms are converted to positive ions; these are then deflected by electric and magnetic fields before being detected. The mass of the elements individual isotopes are found as well as their abundance.

Example of a mass spectrum is shown below:

Mass Spectrometry

From this data the Relative Atomic Mass can be found.

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