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Quantitative Analysis of Explosives by Thermal Desorption–GC–MS Method

August 13, 2020


With the growing public interest to military and homeland security, a reliable analytical technique for identification and quantitation of explosives is in high demand. Many methods have been proposed including colorimetric assaysand tandem mass spectrometry. EPA has also published a standard method using GC-ECD and GC-MS to detect trace explosives. These methods either require a high resolution detector that is not ready for large-scale deployments, or focus on samples in solution. Recently, there are reports that established sampling protocols to collect analytes in vapor phase by using sorbent based thermal desorption tubes, followed by a quantitative GC-MS analysis. In this application note, a thermal desorption system from CDS Analytical coupled to mainstream GC-MS was tested on explosive standards spiked in thermal desorption tubes. Download

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