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    Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) Testing and Analysis

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    Volatile Organic Compound or VOC Testing and Analysis using techniques such as GC-MS

    Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) are present in all natural and synthetic materials and can exist not only as structurally diverse liquids and solids but also as vapours and are thus a significant airborne consideration when biomonitoring human exposure levels, for analysing odour issues, and in the interest of food contact in particular regarding NIAS.

    VOCs are measured by collecting samples and submitting for analysis in the laboratory, using techniques such as GC-MS to ensure that nothing harmful or toxic is present, by breaking down the airstream into constituent parts.

    Analysis is undertaken by our expert’s using headspace or thermal desorption GC-MS, preferably via Agilent 7200 Q-TOF which brings the advantage of greater sensitivity over quad MS instruments and also the benefit of accurate mass which provides a greater chance of providing a positive identification.

    The capability of dynamic headspace is also available which further concentrates the sample before being injected into the GC, again adding sensitivity. VOCs are often present at low levels which can cause issues regarding detection: the technique of QTOF and dynamic headspace (only for volatiles up to 100 Celsius) helps our staff overcome this problem. As an approach to semi-VOCs our experts also use LC in injunction with GC-MS to further investigate and quantify levels of the softening/flexibility chemicals phthalates, depending on compound and substrate.

    Our clients may request analysis of a specifically communicated VOC of interest: accordingly, we possess MS-MS capabilities which can be used to target specific compounds of interest, and with high levels of sensitivity.