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J Chromatogr A. 2008 Jun 13;1194(1):139-42. doi: 10.1016/j.chroma.2008.04.043. Epub 2008 Apr 23.

Determination of phenols and chlorophenols as trimethylsilyl derivatives using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry.

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Wessling International Research and Education Centre, Laboratory of Separation Techniques, Eötvös University, Pázmány Péter sétány 1/A, H-1117 Budapest, Hungary.


A rapid and simple method is described for the simultaneous determination of 6 phenols (phenol, o-, m-, p-cresol, catechol and resorcinol) and 19 chlorophenols (all mono-, di-, tri-, and tetrachlorophenol isomers and pentachlorophenol) present in aqueous samples. The method is based on derivatization with trimethylsilyl-N,N-dimethylcarbamate (TMSDMC). In contrast to other derivatization agents, TMSDMC instantaneously reacts with the phenolic compounds at room temperature and no further sample processing is necessary prior to instrumental analysis. The determination of the derivatives was performed by capillary gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS). The stability of the most instable trimethylsilyl derivative (pentachlorophenol) was studied using different excess levels of the derivatization reagent. The derivatization method was tested on spiked water samples preconcentrated by solid phase extraction on Isolute ENV+ cartridge. The overall method gave detection limits of 0.01-0.25 microg/L for all compounds and < 0.05 microg/L for 17 of them.

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