Ionization Techniques for Mass Spectrometry

There are many types of ionization techniques are used in mass spectrometry methods. The classic methods that most chemists are familiar with are electron impact (EI) and Fast Atom Bombardment (FAB). These techniques are not used much with modern mass spectrometry except EI for environmental work using GC-MS. Electrospray ionization (ESI) - ESI is the ionization technique that has become the most popular ionization technique. The electrospray is created by putting a high voltage on a flow of liquid at atmospheric pressure, sometimes this is assisted by a concurrent flow of gas. Atmospheric Pressure Chemical Ionization (APCI) - APCI is a method that is typically done using a similar source as ESI, but instead of putting a voltage on the  Electrospray Tandem Mass Spectrometry Newborn Screening itself, the voltage is placed on a needle that creates a corona discharge at atmospheric pressures. Matrix Assisted Laser Electrophoresis is a technique of ionization in which the sample is bombarded with a laser. The sample is typically mixed with a matrix that absorbs the radiation biophysics and transfer a proton to the sample. Gas-Phase Ionization.

Absolute configuration assignment of isomers such as cis/trans pairs or ortho/meta/para sets based solely on mass spectrometry (MS) data is a very challenging, most often unfeasible task. Configuration assignments are therefore performed indirectly, by comparison of MS data, in an effort that requires access to all isomers within the set and previous configuration assignments by other techniques. Mass spectra are then acquired hoping that each ionized molecule will dissociate to form a unique, structurally diagnostic fragment ion. Otherwise, each neutral or ionized molecule may be found to display characteristic ion-molecule reactivity and to form a unique, structurally diagnostic product ion. When unique ions are not observed, significant variations in product ion ratios from dissociation or bimolecular reactions can still be used for comparative isomer distinction.

  • Atmospheric pressure chemical ionization
  • Matrix assisted laser desorption ionization
  • Gas Phase ionisation
  • Field desorption and ionisation
  • Particle bombardment
  • Electrospray ionization

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