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Martz, TR, Jannasch HW, Johnson KS.  2009.  Determination of carbonate ion concentration and inner sphere carbonate ion pairs in seawater by ultraviolet spectrophotometric titration. Marine Chemistry. 115:145-154.   10.1016/j.marchem.2009.07.002   AbstractWebsite

We describe a novel method for determination of carbonate ion concentration in seawater by acidimetric titration with UV detection. Because CO(3)(2-) absorbs light at wavelengths of less than similar to 250 nm, it is feasible to titrate most carbonate-containing natural waters with acid and observe an increase in %Transmittance. The observed signal is proportional to the concentration of carbonate ion in the original sample. Present technology permits a theoretical precision in the determination of [CO(3)(2-)] in natural seawater background of similar to 0.5% (at 10 cm pathlength, 200 mu M CO(3)(2-), +/- 0.0001 AU). The procedure has been tested at 1 and 10 cm pathlengths using single and multipoint titration methods, respectively. Results using natural seawater test solutions indicate a resolution in [CO(3)(2-)] of 3.6% in a standard I cm cuvette using a very simple manual method, and 0.7% using a custom-built 10 cm closed titration cell. Estimates of the relative distribution of CO(3)(2-) between inner and outer sphere complexes with Mg(2+) and Na(+) were also determined and the equilibrium constants agree with published values. This method provides a new tool for studies of several fundamental aspects CO(2) chemistry, including the second dissociation constant of carbonic acid, CO(3)(2-) ion pairing, and can be used to directly measure the distribution of carbonate ion in seawater and many other types of natural waters. (C) 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.