What GC Operators Need to Know (Part I)
Every GC operator should have certain knowledge and skills in order to produce the right quality data in the most efficient manner. This series of two webcasts highlights this knowledge and provides a very pragmatic guide to the day to day operation of a Gas Chromatograph as well as a valuable insight into the important variables from any GC method.
Every GC needs to be set-up properly prior to analysis, which may include checks on supply gas checks, column installation and conditioning as well as routine inlet and detector maintenance checks. A checklist of these items is good to follow and is often included in an instrument operation SOP – but do we always follow the SOP least a rudimentary? When was the last time you questioned WHY, some of these operations are necessary?
The instrument then needs to be equilibrated and test injections made to assess the suitability of the system to produce valid analytical data. The baseline, chromatographic appearance and any quantitative output should be evaluated for suitability. What is the best way to do this?
Every GC operator should be able to critically evaluate the method being implemented with a rudimentary knowledge of the column chemistry and why this particular column stationary phase and dimensions have been chosen for the particular analysis. The method of sample preparation should be understood and the choice of sample solvent should be rationalised against the conditions at the beginning of the analysis. The inlet conditions should be checked to ensure they are appropriate for the analysis and do not risk problems with system contamination or poor quantitative reproducibility.
The oven temperature program should be rationalised against the required separation and sample complexity and the detector type and settings should be checked to ensure they are appropriate.
Only by having the ability to properly implement an analysis and critically evaluate the method under consideration can a GC operator produce data which is fit for purpose on an on-going basis and begin to investigate any problems which might arise?
Are YOU fit for purpose? This series of webcasts will help to ensure that you are!
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