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Anal Chem. 2016 Jul 19;88(14):6955-61. doi: 10.1021/acs.analchem.6b01628. Epub 2016 Jul 6.

Development of Gas Chromatographic Mass Spectrometry.

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School of Public and Environmental Affairs, Indiana University , Bloomington, Indiana 47405, United States.


Gas chromatographic mass spectrometry is now widely used for the quantitation and identification of organic compounds in almost any imaginable sample. These applications include the measurement of chlorinated dioxins in soil samples, the identification of illicit drugs in human blood, and the quantitation of accelerants in arson investigations, to name just a few. How did GC/MS get so popular? It turns out that it required parallel developments in mass spectrometry, gas chromatography, and computing and that no one person "invented" the technique. This Perspective traces this history from the 1950s until today.

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