Dynamic non-equilibrium SPME combined with GC, PICI, and ion trap MS for determination of organophosphate esters in air

Tollbäck, Johanna; Isetun, Sindra; Colmsjö, Anders; Nilsson, Ulrika
January 2010
Analytical & Bioanalytical Chemistry;Jan2010, Vol. 396 Issue 2, p839
Academic Journal
Methodology for time-weighted average (TWA) air measurements of semivolatile organophosphate triesters, widely used flame-retardants and plasticizers, and common indoor pollutants is presented. Dynamic non-equilibrium solid-phase microextraction (SPME) for air sampling, in combination with GC/PICI and ion trap tandem MS, yields a fast, almost solvent-free method with low detection limits. Methanol was used as reagent gas for PICI, yielding stable protonated molecules and few fragments. A field sampler, in which a pumped airflow over three polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) 100-μm fibers in series was applied, was constructed, evaluated, and used for the measurements. The method LODs were in the range 2–26 ng m−3 for a sampling period of 2 h. The uptake on the SPME fibers was shown to be about five times faster for triphenyl phosphate compared to the other investigated organophosphate esters, most likely due to more lipophilic properties of the aromatic compound. The boundary layer for triphenyl phosphate when using a 100-µm PDMS sorbent was determined to 0.08 mm at a linear air velocity of 34 cm s−1. Five different organophosphate triesters were detected in air from a laboratory and a lecture hall, at concentrations ranging from 7 ng m−3 up to 2.8 μg m−3.


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