The chromatographic behaviour of negatively-charged iron(II) and copper(II) chelates with 4,7-diphenyl-1,10-phenanthroline (bathophenanthroline) disulfonate (BPS) on a reversed-phase Inertsil ODS-2 column was studied by using methanol-water (60:40, v/v) containing 0.02 M tetramethylammonium bromide (TMAB) and 0.025 M tris(hydroxymethyl)aminomethane (Tris)-HCl at pH 7.5 as a mobile phase. The possibility that the hydrophilic Tris-HCl buffer also serves as a counter ion together with TMAB was briefly discussed. Chromatographic parameters influencing the separation of the chelates were optimized. The method was successfully applied to indirectly determine iron(II) and iron(III) contents in natural water. Nickel(II) ion and possibly organic pollutants interfere with the present method.
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