10. Preparation of Environmental Air Samples for Organic Analysis

  1. John R. Dean

Published Online: 18 OCT 2013

DOI: 10.1002/9781118683422.ch10

Environmental Trace Analysis: Techniques and Applications

Environmental Trace Analysis: Techniques and Applications

How to Cite

Dean, J. R. (ed) (2013) Preparation of Environmental Air Samples for Organic Analysis, in Environmental Trace Analysis: Techniques and Applications, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Chichester, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781118683422.ch10

Editor Information

  1. Department of Applied Sciences, Northumbria University, UK

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 18 OCT 2013
  2. Published Print: 29 NOV 2013

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781119962700

Online ISBN: 9781118683422

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Keywords:

  • environmental air samples;
  • organic analysis;
  • thermal desorption;
  • trapping;
  • volatile organic compounds (VOCs)

Summary

The determination of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the atmosphere can be done by trapping them on a solid support material (e.g. Tenax) and then using thermal desorption directly into a gas chromatograph for subsequent analysis. Trapping of VOCs can be done actively or passively. In active trapping, air is drawn through a sorbent (e.g. Tenax) at a fixed flow rate for a period of time; this allows a mass of VOCs per volume of air to be calculated. In passive trapping, a sorbent, for example a filter paper or solid phase microextraction (SPME) fiber, is left exposed to the air for a period of time and the concentration of VOCs on the sorbent calculated. An effective way to desorb the VOCs from the sorbent is via thermal desorption; other approaches include solvent extraction, for example Soxhlet extraction.