Don’t Prepare to Fail
Is sample preparation still the bottleneck of analytical chemistry?
Victoria Samanidou |
Analytical scientists now have a wide variety of sample preparation techniques to choose from: solid phase extraction (SPE), solid phase microextraction (SPME), microextraction in packed syringe (MEPS), liquid phase microextraction (LPME), single drop microextraction (SDME) dispersive liquid-liquid microextraction (DLLME), hollow fiber supported liquid-phase microextraction (HFLPME), three phase LPME, dispersive liquid-liquid microextraction (LLME), supercritical fluid extraction (SFE), accelerated solvent extraction (ASE), or pressurized liquid extraction (PLE), fabric phase sorptive extraction (FPSE), microwave assisted solvent extraction (MASE), stir bar sorptive extraction (SBSE), micro SPE (μSPE), quick, easy, cheap, effective, rugged and safe extraction (QuEChERS), dispersive solid phase extraction (dSPE), magnetic solid phase extraction (MSPE), matrix solid phase dispersion (MSPD), disposable pipette extraction (DPX)... the list is almost endless.
When I go into class and introduce all these techniques to my students, I joke that the reason so many exist is to make their exams more difficult. I am not sure that they are convinced otherwise (that is, until they start working in the lab and encounter a tricky matrix). But why do so many exist?
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