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Design and application of a novel integrated microsampling system for simultaneous collection of gas- and particle-phase semivolatile organic compounds

Xu, Tingting, Jiang, Li, Yang, Xin, Chen, Jianmin, Cheng, Tiantao, Li, Xiang
Atmospheric environment 2017 v.149 pp. 1-11
air, alkanes, atmospheric chemistry, cost effectiveness, ethylbenzene, monoterpenoids, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, screening, solid phase microextraction, statistical analysis, volatile organic compounds, xylene
An integrated microsampling approach based on active microextraction was developed to study semivolatile organic compounds (SVOCs). This microsampling system included an in-tube hollow-fiber solid-phase microextraction device in combination with a sorbent tube that can be applied in parallel to collect gas- and particle-phase SVOCs. The preparation procedure, theory, and application of two devices were characterized and validated by the single fiber theory and scanning mobility particle sizer experiments. The influence of the optimization parameters (sampling time, flow rate, and breakthrough volume) on the extraction process was studied in detail. The performance of the system was tested via simultaneous collection of a range of gas and particle samples of ethylbenzene, xylenes, n-alkanes, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, and monoterpenes. The collection efficiencies of the two devices were more than 90% for most target compounds. Typically, relative standard deviation values in the range 2–6% were obtained, depending on the compound. The calibration curves for each compound were reproducible and linear over the concentration ranges normally found in atmospheric samples. Both devices were used to collect ambient air samples during a haze period and performed well in the extraction of both gas- and particle-phase SVOCs at the ng m⁻³ levels. The results from phase studies were used for further evaluation of the gas/particle partitioning of SVOCs. Application of this integrated microsampling system in the field validated its use as a simple, rapid, reusable, and cost-effective screening tool.