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3D-Printed Paper Spray Ionization Cartridge with Integrated Desolvation Feature and Ion Optics

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posted on 17.10.2017, 18:56 by G. IJ. Salentijn, R. D. Oleschuk, E. Verpoorte
In this work we present the application of 3D-printing for the miniaturization and functionalization of an ion source for (portable) mass spectrometry (MS). Two versions of a 3D-printed cartridge for paper spray ionization (PSI) are demonstrated, assessed, and compared. We first focus on the use of 3D-printing to enable the integration of an embedded electrostatic lens and a manifold for internal sheath gas distribution and delivery. Cartridges with and without a sheath gas manifold and an electrostatic lens are compared with respect to analytical performance and operational flexibility. The sensitivity and limit of detection are improved in the cartridge with an electrostatic lens and sheath gas manifold compared to the cartridge without (15% and over 6.5× smaller, respectively). The use of these focusing elements also improved the average spray stability. Furthermore, the range of potentials required for PSI was lower, and the distance to the MS orifice over which spray could be obtained was larger. Importantly, both setups allowed quantification of a model drug in the ng/mL range with single-stage MS, after correction for spray instability. Finally, we believe that this work is an example of the impact that 3D-printing will have on the future of analytical device fabrication, miniaturization, and functionalization.

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