Laser ablation – film capture – electrospray ionization – mass spectrometry LA-FC-ESI-MS : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in Chemistry at Massey University, Albany, New Zealand

Thumbnail Image
Open Access Location
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Massey University
The Author
Laser ablation mass spectrometry (LA-MS) is an analytical method widely used in various fields. This study investigates a modified version of LA-MS that involves using a moving liquid film to capture and transfer the laser ablated material into a mass spectrometer. The use of a moving film to capture the ablated material and convey it to the electrospray ionization (ESI) source of a mass spectrometer allows for real time analysis, and the use of a focused laser spot across a translating sample allows for spatial resolution to be achieved. The addition of ionization enhancers, such as formic acid, or metal chelating agents to the liquid film allows additional flexibility when coupled with soft ionization afforded by an ESI source. This method allows for samples to be ablated in an open system under ambient atmospheric conditions. To demonstrate the versatility of this novel technique: solid graphite; caffeine powder and droplets; wood; and school shark vertebrae were all studied using this new method.