Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Monts, David L.

Committee Member

Singh, Jagdish P.

Committee Member

Arnoldus, Henk F.

Committee Member

Berg, Matthew J.

Date of Degree


Document Type

Graduate Thesis - Open Access



Degree Name

Master of Science


College of Arts and Sciences


Department of Physics and Astronomy


Elevated concentrations of mercury in soils are quite hazardous to flora and fauna and water bodies near these soils. This makes continuous monitoring of mercury very essential. This work compares two potential spectroscopic methods LIBS and SIBS at their optimum experimental conditions for mercury monitoring. The experimental conditions for Hg measurements with LIBS and SIBS were determined and calibration was developed. The limits of detection (LODs) of Hg in soil were calculated from the Hg calibration curves. The LOD for mercury (Hg) in soil calculated using LIBS and SIBS are 483 parts-per-million and 20 parts-per-million, respectively. The present study indicates that SIBS is more efficient with powder samples in a low concentration region for quantification of mercury in soils while LIBS is efficient in the region of higher concentrations using pellet samples. Both these techniques can be further investigated and improved for in-situ analysis of soils.