Optimization and application of high-resolution gas chromatography with ion trap tandem mass spectrometry to the determination of polychlorinated biphenyls in atmospheric aerosols

TitleOptimization and application of high-resolution gas chromatography with ion trap tandem mass spectrometry to the determination of polychlorinated biphenyls in atmospheric aerosols
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2001
AuthorsMandalakis, M, Tsapakis M, Stephanou EG
JournalJournal of Chromatography A
Volume925
Issue1-2
Pages183 - 196
KeywordsAerosols, Air analysis, Environmental analysis, Polychlorinated biphenyls
Abstract

Optimization of the Finnigan GCQ ion trap mass spectrometry (ITMS) system and a clean-up procedure were carried out in order to apply high-resolution gas chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry for the analysis of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in aerosols. Six ITMS operating parameters, including isolation time, excitation voltage, excitation time, 'q' value, ion source temperature and electron energy were adjusted in order to optimize the instrument analytical performance. The adjustment of all parameters substantially increased the sensitivity of ITMS in the MS-MS mode. Changes in isolation time did not particularly affect ITMS sensitivity while ion source temperature had the strongest influence. After optimization, a limit of detection of 600 fg/μl with S/N varying from 8 up to 91 was achieved. The application of the optimized ITMS parameters conjointly with the developed clean-up procedure resulted in method detection limits of 10-20 fg/m3 for the determination of PCBs, in the particulate and gas phase of the atmospheric aerosol of background areas in the Eastern Mediterranean and Sweden. Copyright © 2001 Elsevier Science B.V.

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