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Course details

Covers the use of GC-MS in chemical analysis. The course starts with a general discussion of the theory of mass spectrometry as applied to the field of GC-MS. Types of GC-MS are then compared. Subsequent sections of the course cover topics that relate to more advanced aspects of GC-MS including instrument components, modes of operation and the interpretation of GC-MS spectra. Other topics discussed include the optimization of quantitative and qualitative analyses using GC-MS and routine troubleshooting and maintenance of selected GC-MS instruments. Laboratory exercises provide practical training of the principles covered in the lectures.




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Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, the student will be able to:

  • Demonstrate a thorough knowledge of the general theory of mass spectrometry where relevant to the field of gas chromatography - mass spectrometry (GC/MS).
  • Discriminate the types of GC/MS according to their features and usage.
  • Compare the various component options commonly found in GC/MS instruments
    • Diffusion pumps - turbomolecular vs. diffusion.
    • Modes of ionization - electron impact (EI) vs. chemical ionization (CI).
    • Ion monitoring techniques - Positive vs. negative ion methods.
  • Interpret EI and CI GC/MS data.
  • Explain the general steps involved in the operation of GC/MS systems.
  • Compare GC/MS tuning procedures and analyse results from common tuning methods to plan GC/MS maintenance.
  • Discriminate SIM and SCAN modes of operation in GC/MS.
  • Optimise methods for qualitative and quantitative analysis using GC/MS.
  • Develop strategies for quantitative and qualitative analysis in GC/MS using common software packages.
  • Design procedures for method transfer between GC/FID and GC/MS systems.
  • Plan and implement preventative maintenance procedures for use with GC/MS.
  • Select the correct logical steps involved in GC/MS troubleshooting.
  • Assess the versatility of derivatisation methods in GC/MS.
  • Select appropriate internal standards for GC/MS analysis.
  • Rank library search strategies commonly used in GC/MS.

Effective as of Fall 2007


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