Analytical Instrument Documents


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Integrated Analysis of an Acrylic Resin using msFineAnalysis v2 - MSTips 300

In 2018, msFineAnalysis Ver.1 software was released in which data acquired by EI, soft ionization, and accurate mass measurements were automatically integrated to generate a qualitative report for samples measured by these techniques with GC-MS. Recently, msFineAnalysis Ver.2 was introduced as an enhanced version with additional features. In this work, we will describe the changes in Ver.2, which now includes chromatographic deconvolution, and present applications using the new features.

Analyzing a Specific Component using Group Analysis of msFineAnalysis Ver. 2 - MSTips 303

In 2018, we announced the msFineAnalysis software which was designed to automatically integrate two types of data acquired by EI and soft ionization. Recently, we developed msFineAnalysis Version 2, an enhanced version with additional features. msFineAnalysis Version 2 incorporates two new features: Chromatographic Deconvolution and Group Analysis. In this work, we use the group analysis capabilities of the software to evaluate the pyrolysis GC-MS results for a vinyl acetate resin.

Flavones and Flavor Components in Two Basil Leaf Chemotypes

The chemical composition of herbs and spices can vary dramatically between different species and different growing conditions. Herbs grown under different conditions that have different essential oil compositions are referred to as chemotypes. Basil is an herb that has widely varying chemotypes. The difference between basil leaves from two different sources was easily observed by using DART. A leaf from a basil plant purchased at a grocery store was compared with a leaf from a Vietnamese restaurant. A small particle from each leaf was analyzed placed in front of the DART source. Mass spectra were obtained within seconds. Elemental compositions were confirmed by exact masses and accurate isotopic abundance measurements.

Direct Analysis in Real Time (DART®) Mass Spectrometry

Mass Spectrometry (MS) is one of the fastest-growing areas in analytical instrumentation. The use of mass spectrometry in support of synthetic, organic, and pharmaceutical chemistry is well established. Mass spectrometry is also used in materials science, environmental research, and forensic chemistry. It has also evolved into one of the core methods used in biotechnology. However, currently available ion sources place extreme restrictions on the speed and convenience of sample analysis by mass spectrometry. Here we report a method for using mass spectrometry to instantaneously analyze gases, liquids, and solids in open air at ground potential under ambient conditions. Traditional ion sources used in mass spectrometry require the introduction of samples into a high vacuum system.

Non-targeted analysis of electronics waste by comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography combined with high-resolution mass spectrometry: Using accurate mass information and mass defect analysis to explore the data

Comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography (GC×GC) and high-resolution mass spectrometry (HRMS) offer the best possible separation of their respective techniques. Recent commercialization of combined GC×GC–HRMS systems offers new possibilities for the analysis of complex mixtures. However, such experiments yield enormous data sets that require new informatics tools to facilitate the interpretation of the rich information content. This study reports on the analysis of dust obtained from an electronics recycling facility by using GC×GC in combination with a new high-resolution time-of-flight (TOF) mass spectrometer. New software tools for (non-traditional) Kendrick mass defect analysis were developed in this research and greatly aided in the identification of compounds containing chlorine and bromine, elements that feature in most persistent organic pollutants (POPs). In essence, the mass defect plot serves as a visual aid from which halogenated compounds are recognizable on the basis of their mass defect and isotope patterns. Mass chromatograms were generated based on specific ions identified in the plots as well as region of the plot predominantly occupied by halogenated contaminants. Tentative identification was aided by database searches, complementary electron-capture negative ionization experiments and elemental composition determinations from the exact mass data. These included known and emerging flame retardants, such as polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), hexabromobenzene, tetrabromo bisphenol A and tris (1-chloro-2-propyl) phosphate (TCPP), as well as other legacy contaminants such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and polychlorinated terphenyls (PCTs).

Molecular Characterization of Volatiles and Petrochemical Base Oils by Photo-Ionization GC×GC-TOF-MS

The characterization of organic mixtures by comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography (GC×GC) coupled to electron impact (EI) ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (TOF-MS) allows the detection of thousands of compounds. However, owing to the exhaustive fragmentation following EI ionization, despite the use of mass spectral libraries, a majority of the compounds remains unidentified because of the lack of parent ion preservation. Thus, soft-ionization energies leading to organic compounds being ionized with limited or no fragmentation, retaining the molecular ion, has been of interest for many years. In this study, photoionization (PI) was evaluated as the ion source for GC×GC-TOF-MS measurements. First, capabilities and limitations of PI were tested using an authentic mixture of compounds of several chemical classes. Ionization energy exhibited by PI, equivalent to 10.8 eV, resulted in significant retention of molecular ion information; [M]+• for alkanes, ketones, FAMEs, aromatics, [M–H]+• for chloroalkanes, and [M–H2O]+• for alcohols. Second, considering the potential of PI for hydrocarbons, base oils, complex mixtures of saturated and unsaturated hydrocarbons blended for finished lubricant formulations, were extensively evaluated. Several chemical classes of hydrocarbons were positively identified including a large number of isomeric compounds, both aliphatics and cyclics. Interestingly, branched-alkanes were ionized with lower excess internal energy, not only retaining the molecular ions but also exhibiting unique fragmentation patterns. The results presented herein offer a unique perspective into the detailed molecular characterization of base oils. Such unprecedented identification power of PI coupled with GC×GC-TOF-MS is the first report covering volatiles to low-volatile organic mixtures.

Compositional elucidation of heavy petroleum base oil by GC × GC‐EI/PI/CI/FI‐TOFMS

Comprehensive two‐dimensional gas chromatography (GC × GC) coupled to time‐of‐flight mass spectrometry is a powerful separation tool for complex petroleum product analysis. However, the most commonly used electron ionization (EI) technique often makes the identification of the majority of hydrocarbons impossible due to the exhaustive fragmentation and lack of molecular ion preservation, prompting the need of soft‐ionization energies. In this study, three different soft‐ionization techniques including photo ionization (PI), chemical ionization (CI), and field ionization (FI) were compared against EI to elucidate their relative capabilities to reveal different base oil hydrocarbon classes. Compared with EI (70 eV), PI (10.8 eV) retained significant molecular ion (M+·) information for a large number of isomeric species including branched‐alkanes and saturated monocyclic hydrocarbons along with unique fragmentation patterns. However, for bicyclic/polycyclic naphthenic and aromatic compounds, EI played upper hand by retaining molecular as well as fragment ions to identify the species, whereas PI exhibited mainly molecular ion signals. On the other hand, CI revealed selectivity towards different base oil groups, particularly for steranes, sulfur‐containing thiophenes, and esters, yielding protonated molecular ions (M + H)+ for unsaturated and hydride abstracted ions (M‐H+) for saturated hydrocarbons. FI, as expected, generated intact molecular ions (M+·) irrespective to the base oil chemical classes. It allowed elemental composition by TOFMS with a mass resolving power up to 8000 (FWHM) and a mass accuracy of 1 mDa, leading to the calculation of heteroatomic content, double bond equivalency, and carbon number of the compounds. The qualitative and quantitative results presented herein offer a unique perspective into the detailed comparison of different ionization techniques corresponding to several hydrocarbon classes.

What Is the Opposite of Pandora’s Box? Direct Analysis, Ambient Ionization, and a New Generation of Atmospheric Pressure Ion Sources

The introduction of DART and DESI sources approximately seven years ago led to the development of a new series of atmospheric pressure ion sources referred to as “ambient ionization” sources. These fall into two major categories: spray techniques like DESI or plasma techniques like DART. The selectivity of “direct ionization,” meaning analysis without chromatography and with little or no sample preparation, depends on the mass spectrometer selectivity. Although high resolution and tandem mass spectrometry are valuable tools, rapid and simple sample preparation methods can improve the utility of ambient ionization methods. The concept of ambient ionization has led to the realization that there are many more ways to form ions than might be expected. An interesting example is the use of a flint-and-steel spark source to generate ions from compounds such as phenolphthalein and Gramicidin S.

Rapid detection of fentanyl, fentanyl analogues, and opioids for on-site or laboratory based drug seizure screening using thermal desorption DART-MS and ion mobility spectrometry

Fentanyl and fentanyl analogues represent a current and emerging threat in the United States as pure illicit narcotics and in mixtures with heroin. Because of their extreme potency, methods to safely and rapidly detect these compounds are of high interest. This work investigates the use of thermal desorption direct analysis in real time mass spectrometry (TD-DART-MS) and ion mobility spectrometry (IMS) as tools for the rapid and sensitive (nanogram to picograms) detection of fentanyl, 16 fentanyl analogues, and five additional opioids. Competitive ionization studies highlight that detection of these compounds in the presence of heroin is readily achievable, down to 0.1% fentanyl by mass with TD-DART-MS. With IMS, detection of nanogram levels of fentanyl in a binary fentanyl and heroin mixture is possible but can be complicated by decreased resolution in certain commercial instrument models. Modifications to the alarm windows can be used to ensure detection of fentanyl in binary mixtures. Additionally, three complex background matrices (fingerprint residue, dirt, and plasticizers) are shown to have a minimal effect of the detection of these compounds. Wipe sampling of the exterior of bags of questioned powders is shown to be a safe alternative method for field screening and identification, removing the need to handle potentially lethal amounts of material.

Other Resources

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Corona - Glow Discharge (DART Ion Source)

February 22, 2020