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Techniques & Tools Liquid Chromatography

The Top 10 Game Changers in HPLC History

When HPLC was “discovered” over 50 years ago, it revolutionized the field of analytical chemistry. Major developments in the technique – which seemed to occur almost yearly in the 1970s and the early 1980s – ranged from revolutionary to evolutionary. During that period, the technique quickly shifted from a large-particle, gravity-fed, large-bore glass column technique to an automated, small-particle, high-pressure, narrow-bore stainless steel column technique. In the story of HPLC development, the column and the instrument are intertwined – and both have played pivotal roles in increasing separation speed, boosting efficiency, and improving quantitation.

In this article, we attempt to identify – with the help of a panel of LC, data systems and mass spectrometry experts (see “We Couldn’t Have Done It Without You”) – the developments that truly “made a difference.” We believe the resulting Top 10 allowed HPLC to surpass most other techniques in terms of application range and its ability to answer analytical questions. And so, without further ado...

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About the Authors

Ron Majors

ChromPrep, West Chester, PA, USA


John Baltrus

Co-chair, Instruments and Artifacts Committee, Science History Institute

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