Comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography-mass spectrometry: A review

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  • Published: Apr 21, 2008
  • Channels: Gas Chromatography
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Comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography-mass spectrometry: A review

Mass Spectrometry Reviews 2008, 27, 101-124
Luigi Mondello, Peter Quinto Tranchida, Paola Dugo, Giovanni Dugo

Abstract: Although comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography (GC × GC) has been on the scene for more than 15 years, it is still generally considered a relatively novel technique and is yet far from being fully established. The revolutionary aspect of GC × GC, with respect to classical multidimensional chromatography, is that the entire sample is subjected to two distinct analytical separations. The resulting enhanced separating capacity makes this approach a prime choice when GC analysts are challenged with highly complex mixtures. The combination of a third mass spectrometric dimension to a GC × GC system generates the most powerful analytical tool today for volatile and semi-volatile analytes. The present review is focused on the rather brief, but not scant, history of comprehensive two-dimensional GC-MS: the first experiments were carried out at the end of the 1990s and, since then, the methodology has been increasingly studied and applied. Almost all GC × GC-MS applications have been carried out by using either a time-of-flight or quadrupole mass analyzer; significant experiments relative to a variety of research fields, as well as advantages and disadvantages of the MS systems employed, are discussed. The principles, practical and theoretical aspects, and the most significant developments of GC × GC are also described.

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