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Ionic liquid stationary phases for gas chromatography

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Abstract

This article provides a summary of the development of ionic liquids as stationary phases for gas chromatography beginning with early work on packed columns that established details of the retention mechanism and established working methods to characterize selectivity differences compared with molecular stationary phases through the modern development of multi-centered cation and cross-linked ionic liquids for high-temperature applications in capillary gas chromatography. Since there are many reviews on ionic liquids dealing with all aspects of their chemical and physical properties, the emphasis in this article is placed on the role of gas chromatography played in the design of ionic liquids of low melting point, high thermal stability, high viscosity, and variable selectivity for separations. Ionic liquids provide unprecedented opportunities for extending the selectivity range and temperature-operating range of columns for gas chromatography, an area of separation science that has otherwise been almost stagnant for over a decade.

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