δ18O (delta-18 O) refers to the ratio of two stable oxygen isotopes: 18O:16O. Each contains eight protons with the former containing ten neutrons and the latter, eight neutrons. δ18O analysis, also referred to as isotopic signature, takes advantage of how environmental variation differentially affects the relative abundance of each isotope in the signature. δ18O measurements can help inform agricultural soil science, ecology, ocean science, hydrology, paleontology, and the food & beverage industry.

For example, these signatures can be used to help identify groundwater’s source by exposing its interaction with minerals. Similarly, δ18O analysis can reveal the geographical provenance of a food (e.g. apples) or whether or not a product branded as 100% homogenous (e.g. 100% olive oil) has been diluted. δ18O can also be used to provide information on past water temperatures, for example, from shells of certain marine organisms.

Picarro has designed and produced several isotope analyzers that precisely measure δ18O in water for laboratory and field studies.


Product Measurements Applications

L2130-i Isotope and Gas Concentration Analyzer

High-precision triple oxygen isotope research in water is finally simple and affordable.

L2140-i Isotope and Gas Concentration Analyzer

The Picarro L2140-i isotopic water analyzer enables simultaneous measurements of δ18O, δ17O, δ2H, and determines 17O-excess for paleoclimate, (eco) hydrology, and atmospheric science applications.