Department of Chemistry



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Diane Beauchemin

Diane Beauchemin

Full Professor
Environmental & Analytical

Chernoff Hall, CHE308 (office), CHE106/CHE338 (labs)
Department of Chemistry
90 Bader Lane
Queen's University
Kingston, Ontario K7L 3N6
Lab CHE106 Tel: 613-533-6000; ext. 77740
Lab CHE338 Tel: 613-533-6000; ext. 78256
Fax: 613-533-6669

Research Interests

My research efforts are focused on inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICPMS) and ICP optical emission spectrometry (OES) from both fundamental and application perspectives. Part of my research is devoted to understanding the remaining limitations of these techniques and to identify ways to alleviate them. This includes improvement of the sample introduction system, which is the Achilles’ heel of atomic spectrometry, so as to improve sensitivity without jeopardizing plasma robustness, and using a mixed-gas plasma instead of the standard Ar ICP to further increase robustness and simplify calibration.

The other important part of my research is devoted to expanding the range of application of ICPMS/OES to, for instance, geochemical exploration, risk assessment of food safety (see the figure below for the method used), characterization of nanoparticles, and forensic analysis.

Improvement to single particle ICPMS for the analysis of nanoparticles is being made using, for instance, flow injection, which offers several advantages (no need to measure the sample uptake rate, and measurement of the sample introduction efficiency is only required if the particle size distribution is required).

Electrothermal vaporisation coupled to ICPOES for direct analysis of minute samples is ideally suited for forensic analysis, as minute trace evidence is usually found at a crime scene. Methods being developed include the analysis of paint chips left in hit-and-run cases and the analysis of head hair (and other hair) to infer gender and ethnicity, which is invaluable when the hair has not root, as DNA analysis is then not possible. This approach is now being extended to anthropology by looking at mummies.

Dr Beauchemin research

•B.Sc., 1980, Ph.D., 1984, Université de Montréal;
•Research Associate, 1984-88, National Research Council of Canada;
•Alan Date Memorial Award in ICP-MS, 1988;
•Maccoll Prize in Mass Spectrometry, 1991;
•Senior Industrial Fellowship, 1995;
•Distinguished Service Award, Spectroscopy Society of Canada, 2001;
•Maxxam Award, 2017;
•Gerhard Herzberg Award, 2018.

Recent Publications

N. Arulmozhi, D. Esau, R. P. Lamsal, D. Beauchemin, G. Jerkiewicz, Structural Transformation of Monocrystalline Platinum Electrodes upon Electro-oxidation and Electro-dissolution, ACS Catal. 2018, 8, 6426−6439.

G. L. Scheffler, D. Pozebon, D. Beauchemin, A comparative study of sheathing devices to increase robustness in inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrometry via a nitrogen flow, J. Anal. At. Spectrom., 2018, DOI: 10.1039/C8JA00118A.

T. K. Anderlini, D. Beauchemin, Improvements to the Analytical Performance of Inductively Coupled Plasma Optical Emission Spectrometry by coupling a Multi-Mode Sample Introduction System to an Infrared Heated Pre-Evaporation Tube, J. Anal. At. Spectrom., 33 (2018) 1068-1075.

A. Al Hejami, D. Beauchemin, New infrared-heated sample introduction system for enhanced analytical performance of inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrometry, J. Anal. At. Spectrom., 33 (2018) 738-744.

R. Althobiti, D. Beauchemin, Inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry with on-line leaching to assess the maximum bio-accessibility of toxic and essential elements in wheat from Saudi Arabia, J. Anal. At. Spectrom., 33 (2018) 642-648.

R. Althobiti, N. W. Sadiq, D. Beauchemin, Realistic Risk Assessment of Arsenic in Rice, Food Chem., 257 (2018) 230–236.

T. K. Anderlini, D. Beauchemin, Improvement of Sample Introduction to Inductively Coupled Plasma Optical Emission Spectrometry Using an Ultrasonic Nebulizer with an Infrared Heated Pre-Evaporation Tube, J. Anal. At. Spectrom., 33 (2018) 127-134.

R. P. Lamsal, G. Jerkiewicz, D. Beauchemin, Improving accuracy in single particle inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry based on conventional standard solution calibration, Microchem. J., 137 (2018) 485–489.

N. W. Sadiq, D. Beauchemin, Simultaneous Speciation Analysis of Arsenic, Chromium and Selenium in the Bioaccessible Fraction for Realistic Risk Assessment of Food Safety, Anal. Chem., 89 (2017) 13299-13304.

G. L. Scheffler, Y. Makonnen, D. Pozebon, D. Beauchemin, Solid sampling analysis of Mg alloy using electrothermal vaporization inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrometry, J. Anal. At. Spectrom., 32 (2017) 2041-2045.

L. Huang, D. Beauchemin, Forensic analysis of automotive paint chips for the identification of the vehicle manufacturer, colour and year of production using electrothermal vaporization coupled to inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrometry, J. Anal. At. Spectrom., 32 (2017) 1601-1607.

B. K. Pilapil, J. van Drunen, Y. Makonnen, D. Beauchemin, G. Jerkiewicz, B. D. Gates, Ordered Porous Electrodes by Design: Towards Enhancing the Effective Utilization of Platinum in Electrocatalysis, Advanced Functional Materials, 2017 DOI: 10.1002/adfm.20: 1-9.

Y. Makonnen, W. R. MacFarlane, M. L. Geagea, D. Beauchemin, Towards the Reduction of Matrix Effects in Inductively Coupled Plasma Optical Emission Spectrometry: An Argon-Nitrogen-Hydrogen Mixed-gas Plasma for the Analysis of Geological and Environmental Samples, J. Anal. At. Spectrom., 32 (2017) 1688-1696.  Featured article on the cover of the issue.

N. Sadiq, L. Huang, F. Kaveh, D. Beauchemin, Solid sampling ETV-ICPOES coupled to a nebulization/pre-evaporation system for direct elemental analysis of glutinous rice by external calibration with standard solutions, Food Chem., 237 (2017) 1-6.

G. L. Scheffler, A. J. Brooks, Z. Yao, M. R. Daymond, D. Pozebon, D. Beauchemin, Direct determination of trace elements in austenitic stainless steel samples by ETV-ICPOES, J. Anal. At. Spectrom., 31 (2016) 2434-2440.

J. Kim, A. Munro, D. Beauchemin, G. Jerkiewicz, Limits of Detection and Quantification of Electrochemical Quartz-Crystal Nanobalance in Platinum Electrochemistry and Electrocatalysis Research, Anal. Chem., 88 (2016) 10599-10604.

R. P. Lamsal, G. Jerkiewicz, D. Beauchemin, Flow Injection Single Particle Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry: An Original Simple Approach for the Characterization of Metal-Based Nanoparticles, Anal. Chem., 88 (2016) 10552-10558.

M. Tian, C. Cousins, D. Beauchemin, Y. Furuya, A. Ohma, G. Jerkiewicz, Influence of the Working and Counter Electrode Surface Areas Ratio on the Dissolution of Platinum under Electrochemical Conditions, ACS Catalysis, 6 (2016) 5108-5116.

Y. Furuya, T. Mashio, A. Ohma, M. Tian, F. Kaveh, D. Beauchemin, G. Jerkiewicz, Influence of Electrolyte Composition and pH on Platinum Electrochemical and Chemical Dissolution in Aqueous Acidic Media, ACS Catalysis 5 (2015) 2605-2614.

R.P. Lamsal and D. Beauchemin, Estimation of the bio-accessible fraction of Cr, As, Cd and Pb in locally available bread using on-line continuous leaching method coupled to inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry, Anal. Chim. Acta, 867 (2015) 9–17.

Y. Makonnen and D. Beauchemin, Investigation of a Measure of Robustness in Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry, Spectrochim. Acta Part B 103–104 (2015) 57–62.

Y. Makonnen, J. Burgener and D. Beauchemin, Improvement of Analytical Performance in Inductively Coupled Plasma Optical Emission Spectrometry without Compromising Robustness using an Infrared-Heated Sample Introduction System with a Pneumatic Nebulizer, J. Anal. At. Spectrom. 30 (2015) 214 – 224.


I am co-PI on the first NSERC Discovery Frontiers project at Queen’s on the development of Ni electrocatalysts. The leader of this multi-institution project is Gregory Jerkiewicz. As the main Analytical Chemist on the team, my role is to characterize the materials produced by the team and assess their stability. This has resulted in collaborations with Elena Baranova (Ottawa University) and Daniel Guay (INRS). I also have a 5-year NSERC Collaborative Research and Development project with Activation Laboratories Ltd, which is jointly supported by OCE for the first two years, for improvements and development of new ICPMS-based methods.