The analytical technique of mass spectrometry has a broad range of uses that include, for example, identifying unknown compounds within a material, measuring the amount of a known material that is present in a sample, and measuring changes in sample composition in real time. Mass spectrometry is applied to solids, liquids, gases and vapors.
The measurement of changes to gas and vapor composition in real time extends the use of mass spectrometry to applications in fuel cells, catalysis, plasma, environmental and electro-chemistry.
Mass Spectrometer Components
Every mass spectrometer consists of three basic components; the ion source, the analyzer, and the detector system.
The ion source is used to generate gaseous ions from the sample, which are required to perform the measurement. The analyzer is used to separate the different types of ions according to their mass-to-charge ratio, and the detector collects these ions and records the amount in each group.
Mass Spectrometer Process
The first part of the process within a mass spectrometer is ionization; this occurs when an atom within the sample gains a negative or positive charge. Most standard mass spectrometers work with positive ions.
Once the ions are generated, they are accelerated to ensure they all have the same kinetic energy, following which they are deflected by a field according to their mass-to-charge ratio to filter the ions into a detector.
Mass Spectrometers from Hiden Analytical
Hiden Analytical has been designing, developing, and manufacturing mass spectrometers for over 35 years. Our mass spectrometers are used for a range of different applications, including gas analysis, catalysis, thermal analysis, surface analysis and engineering, and plasma studies.
Our product range is extensive and we manufacture mass spectrometers in different configurations and for mass ranges of 1-5000 AMU. Our versatile product offering enables the analysis of a variety of volatile organic, metal organic, and inorganic compounds.
If you would like to learn more about the basic operating principles of mass spectrometry, download our presentation on Quadrupole Mass Spectrometry Concepts
Or, if you would like any more information about our range of mass spectrometers, please send us a message.