Developed for GC-MS users, this document describes how selected ion flow tube mass spectrometry (SIFT-MS) differs from gas chromatography mass spectrometry (GC-MS) both in its technical features and its operational capabilities. Both techniques analyze volatile organic compounds (VOCs), but have different fundamental strengths, which means the techniques complement rather than replace each other.
SIFT-MS is a form of direct mass spectrometry that analyses whole air in real time with typical detection limits at parts-per-trillion level (by volume). Real-time analysis is achieved by using precisely controlled soft chemical ionization that does not require chromatography. These factors also allow long-term calibration stability, reduced maintenance, and easy configuration of SIFT-MS instruments. Consequently, SIFT-MS is an ideal tool for rapid screening and real-time monitoring applications, especially where users may have non-technical backgrounds.
Alternatively, GC-MS provides very good specificity, but relies on electron impact ionization and chromatographic separation. Therefore it is relatively slow, has high maintenance requirements, and must be operated by skilled personnel, when compared to SIFT-MS. As a result, GC-MS complements the fast screening capabilities of SIFT-MS with slow but very selective analysis.
Explore our webinars on the SIFT-MS technique:
In this 60-minute SIFT-MS webinar, we will provide a detailed introduction to the SIFT-MS technique and its analytical performance.
This webinar explores the technique of SIFT-MS (selected ion flow tube mass spectrometry), and its use for rapid vehicle interior air quality analysis.
Recorded May 3, 2017
Various automotive applications of SIFT-MS are described in the webinar, including enhanced tailpipe exhaust gas analysis, emission screening of synthetic and natural vehicle components, and leak detection.
Recorded April 11, 2017
During this webinar, we’ll explore how the SIFT-MS instrument can assist in impurity profiling in pharmaceutical products. Applications include simple formaldehyde analysis, residual solvent analysis, and packaging analysis.
During this webinar, we will introduce the SIFT-MS technique, its automation, and present a variety of food and flavor applications.
Recorded December 7, 2016
In this webinar, we’ll explore how direct, broad-spectrum analysis using SIFT-MS can be used for formaldehyde analysis to trace levels in air and headspace, real-time ambient air monitoring for VOCs and odorous compounds, and very high-throughput screening of polymers and packaging.
Recorded December 1, 2016
Air can be a complex and dynamic matrix. This webinar will present a variety of SIFT-MS-based environmental applications, including ambient and fenceline monitoring, stack analysis, indoor air quality analysis, and comprehensive odor analysis.
Recorded November 29, 2016
This webinar will introduce the SIFT-MS technique, and its use in applications including formaldehyde analysis to trace levels in air and headspace, real-time ambient air monitoring for VOCs and odorous compounds, and very high-throughput screening of polymers and packaging.
From mud logging to the fenceline, selected ion flow tube mass spectrometry (SIFT-MS) provides ground-breaking opportunities to the petrochemical industry, including prospecting, extraction, refining and processing.
Recorded November 2, 2016
Regulators and consumers demand increasingly lower levels of harmful volatile emissions in motor vehicle passenger cabins, pushing manufacturers toward more comprehensive testing – from component level to finished vehicles – to ensure conformance and avoid costly tear-out.