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Journal of chromatography. A

A strategy for the systematic development of a liquid chromatographic mass spectrometric screening method for polymer electrolyte membrane degradation products using isocratic and gradient phase optimized liquid chromatography.


PMID 19900678

Abstract

Within the scope of research for target and non-target LC-MS/MS analysis of membrane degradation products of polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells, a systematic method development for the separation of structurally similar compounds was performed by phase optimized liquid chromatography. Five different stationary phases with different selectivities were used. Isocratic separation for 4-hydroxybenzoic acid, isophthalic acid, terephthalic acid, 4-hydroxybenzaldehyde and 4-formylbenzoic acid was achieved on a C18 and a Phenyl phase. Using the PRISMA model the separation efficiency was optimized. This was achieved on a serially connected mixed stationary phase composed of 30 mm C18, 150 mm Phenyl and 60 mm C30. For the LC-MS screening of unknown degradation products from polymer electrolyte membranes in the product water of a fuel cell, a solvent gradient is mandatory for less polar or later eluting compounds. By means of 4-mercaptobenzoic acid it could be shown that a solvent gradient can be applied in order to elute later eluting compounds in a short time. The adaptability of this method for the qualitative analysis by target and non-target LC-MS/MS screening has been shown by means of 4-hydroxybenzoic acid. The combination of solvent gradient and isocratic conditions makes this approach attractive for the purpose of a screening method for known and unknown analytes in a water sample.

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