Gas Chromatography

Chromatography is a method employed to separate chemical substances and is dependent on different partitioning actions between a stationary phase and a flowing mobile phase for separating elements in a mix.

The sample is transported by a stream of moving gas through a tube that holds evenly separated solid, or could be coated with a liquid film. Gas chromatography is one of the most critical techniques in chemistry because of its simplicity, highly effective nature, and sensitivity. It is most often employed to conduct qualitative and quantitative analysis of mixtures, to purify compounds, and to decide on certain thermochemical constants.

Gas chromatography is additionally widely utilized in the automatic monitoring of industrial processes. Take, as an example, gas streams that are often analyzed and adjusted with manual or automatic responses to counteract undesirable differences.

There are many routine analyses that are conducted quickly in environmental and other fields of the like. For instance, there exist many countries with certain monitor points that are used as a means of consistently measuring emission levels of gases such as carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, and nitrogen dioxides. In addition, gas chromatography can be used in analyzing pharmaceutical products.

The technique for gas chromatography begins with introducing the test mixture into a stream of inert gas, typically a gas that acts as a carrier gas such as argon or helium. Liquid samples are first vaporized prior to being injected into the stream of carrier gases. Later, the gas stream moves through the packed column that contains elements of the sample moving at speeds that are determined by the level of interaction between each constituent with the stationary nonvolatile phase. Those pieces that have a more prominent interaction with the stationary phase are slowed more and thus divide from those with a less significant interaction. As these components begin to be eliminated out of the column with a solvent, they can be measeured by a detector and/or gathered for additional analysis.

There are two prominent types of gas chromatography: gas-solid chromatography (GSC) and gas-liquid chromatography (GLC). The first, gas-solid chromatography, is centered around the solid stationary phase, during which retention of analytes occurs as a result of physical adsorption. Gas-liquid chromatography is often employed when dividing ions that can be dissolved in a solvent. If it comes into contact with a second solid or liquid phase, the different solutes in the sample solution will interact with the other phase to certain degrees that can change based on differences in adsorption, exchange of ions, partitioning or size. These changes give the mixture components the ability to separate from each other when they use these difference to change their transit times of the solutes through a column.

Gas Chromatography with Carrier Gases

When selecting a carrier gas, the selection depends on the type of detector being utilized and the elements that are being determined. Carrier gases used in chromatographs should be high-purity and chemically inert towards the sample. To successfully get rid of water or other impurities, the carrier gas system may have a molecular sieve.

The most prominent injection systems used to introduce gas samples are the gas sampling valve and injection via syringe. Both liquid and gas samples have the ability to be injected with a syringe. When in its most simple form, the sample is first injected into and vaporized in a heated chamber, then transferred to the column. When packed columns are utilized, the first section of the column is typically utilized as an injection chamber and warmed to a proper temperature separately. With capillary columns a small sectionvof the vaporized sample is moved to the column from a separate injection chamber; this is referred to as split-injection. This technique is utilized when hoping to keep the sample volume from overloading the column.

A method known as on-column injection can be employed for capillary gas chromatography when trace measures could be found in the sample. In on-column injection, the liquid sample injected with a syringe immediately into the column. After this, the solvent is able to evaporate and a concentration of the sample components occurs. In gas samples, the concentration is generated by a technique referred to as cryo focusing. In this process, the sample components are concentrated and detached from the matrix by condensation in a cold-trap prior to the chromatography process.

To conclude, there is also a process called loop-injection, and it is often used in process control where liquid or gas samples flow consistently through the sample loop. The sample loop is filled with a syringe or an automatic pump in an off-line position. After that, the sample is transported from the loop to the column by the mobile phase, sometimes having a concentration step.

Whether you’re looking for specialty gases to be utilized in gas chromatography, or any other industry that employs specialty gases, PurityPlus has a plethora of specialty gas products to meet your need. We have a large selection of specialty gases and specialty gas equipment, along with the resources and experts on hand to provide assistance in any areas you may need. For additional information, browse our online catalog or via email at or at 314.644.3500.