27 Jun 2024
 | 27 Jun 2024
Status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal AMT.

Rapid quantitative analysis of SVOCs in indoor surface film using Direct Analysis in Real Time mass spectrometry: A case study on phthalates

Ying Zhou, Longkun He, Jiang Tan, Jiang Zhou, and Yingjun Liu

Abstract. Direct Analysis in Real Time Mass Spectrometry (DART-MS) is recently emerged as a promising approach for measuring semi-volatile organic compounds (SVOCs) in indoor surface films. However, its broader application in indoor environments is limited by low measurement repeatability and no separation of isomers. Herein we developed a sampling suite of indoor surface film for DART-MS analysis, optimized settings of DART to obtain higher analytical performance, and demonstrated the possibility of separating isomeric compounds using tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS). Two pair of isomeric phthalate esters, including di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP) and di-n-octyl phthalate (DnOP), diisobutyl phthalate (DiBP) and di-n-butyl phthalate (DnBP), were used as examples for method optimization and validation. Under optimized conditions, the instrument responses for all four compounds exhibited good linearity (r > 0.992) and acceptable repeatability (intraday RSD < 11.0%). The limits of quantification for the four PAEs ranged from 0.042 to 0.24 ng/cm2. The uncertainty in the separation of isomeric components using MS/MS was <11.4%, which is acceptable for real sample analysis. To further assess the developed method, we analyzed 10 film samples collected side by side in an occupied office. DnOP was not detected. The RSD among samples was 6.1% for DEHP, 4.6% for DnBP, and 10.4% for DiBP, indicating overall good repeatability of the collection and measurement method developed. With improved performance, the developed method increases the feasibility of the DART-MS technique for monitoring dynamics of chemical composition of indoor surface films.

Publisher's note: Copernicus Publications remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims made in the text, published maps, institutional affiliations, or any other geographical representation in this preprint. The responsibility to include appropriate place names lies with the authors.
Ying Zhou, Longkun He, Jiang Tan, Jiang Zhou, and Yingjun Liu

Status: open (until 02 Aug 2024)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
Ying Zhou, Longkun He, Jiang Tan, Jiang Zhou, and Yingjun Liu
Ying Zhou, Longkun He, Jiang Tan, Jiang Zhou, and Yingjun Liu


Total article views: 155 (including HTML, PDF, and XML)
HTML PDF XML Total Supplement BibTeX EndNote
113 33 9 155 30 7 9
  • HTML: 113
  • PDF: 33
  • XML: 9
  • Total: 155
  • Supplement: 30
  • BibTeX: 7
  • EndNote: 9
Views and downloads (calculated since 27 Jun 2024)
Cumulative views and downloads (calculated since 27 Jun 2024)

Viewed (geographical distribution)

Total article views: 136 (including HTML, PDF, and XML) Thereof 136 with geography defined and 0 with unknown origin.
Country # Views %
  • 1
Latest update: 18 Jul 2024
Short summary
This study presents a sensitive DART-MS/MS method for the fast and accurate quantification of SVOCs in organic films without the need for pre-treatment. This method developed herein offers substantially improved repeatability in the absence of internal standards. By utilizing MS/MS analysis, separation of isomeric components within films becomes possible. These developments increase the feasibility of the DART-MS approach for studying the dynamics of SVOCs in indoor surface film.