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Separation of Ions in Air

The time-resolved separation of TAA cations was demonstrated in the manner outlined in Sect. 3.2.6. The results of these scans are shown in Fig. 3.8a. Because ion injection into the trap of the MS was not synchronized with injection into the curved electrode system, the comparison between detection times on the LTQ mass spectrometer to simulation results is only a qualitative measure of the observed separation effect on the same time scale as that observed experimentally. Simulation results shown in Fig. 3.8b suggest that a time resolved separation of m/z 691 and m/z 354 from the lower mass TAA cations should be evident in the mass spectra. The observed results show that this is indeed the case, confirming simulation results.

Spectra of tetraalkylammonium cations from consecutive MS scans (a); Simulated time of flight distribution for tetraalkylammonium cation mixture transmitted through printed electrode assembly (b)

Fig. 3.8 Spectra of tetraalkylammonium cations from consecutive MS scans (a); Simulated time of flight distribution for tetraalkylammonium cation mixture transmitted through printed electrode assembly (b)

This proof-of-concept demonstration shows the ability to separate gas-phase ions in air and is meant to highlight a potential use of the 3D printed electrodes as a better resolved separation is surely possible through optimization of applied potentials, ion injection parameters, and electrode geometries.

 
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