Authors: Hongying Zhu, Guangming Huang

PMID: 25813029

DOI: 10.1016/j.aca.2015.02.043

Publication Type: Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov’t

ISSN: 1873-4324

Journal Title: Analytica chimica acta

Publication Date: 2015 Mar 31

Abstract

In this work, a humidity independent mass spectrometric method was developed for rapid analysis of gas phase chemicals. This method is based upon ambient proton transfer reaction between gas phase chemicals and charged water droplets, in a reaction chamber with nearly saturate humidity under atmospheric pressure. The humidity independent nature enables direct and rapid analysis of raw gas phase samples, avoiding time- and sample-consuming sample pretreatments in conventional mass spectrometry methods to control sample humidity. Acetone, benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and meta-xylene were used to evaluate the analytical performance of present method. The limits of detection for benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and meta-xylene are in the range of ∼0.1 to ∼0.3 ppbV; that of benzene is well below the present European Union permissible exposure limit for benzene vapor (5 μg m(-3), ∼1.44 ppbV), with linear ranges of approximately two orders of magnitude. The majority of the homemade device contains a stainless steel tube as reaction chamber and an ultrasonic humidifier as the source of charged water droplets, which makes this cheap device easy to assemble and facile to operate. In addition, potential application of this method was illustrated by the real time identification of raw gas phase chemicals released from plants at different physiological stages.

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