Sample introduction and interfaces for Positive Ion Mass Spectrometry

Dr. Cameron McIntyre1, Dr. Richard Shanks1, Prof. Stewart Freeman1,3, Andrew Tait1, Doug Hamilton2, Issaku Kohl2, Taylor Graham2, Kenny Kearney3, Allan O’Connor3, Richard Kitchen3, Thilo Hauser3, Mark Sundquist3

1Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre, East Kilbride, United Kingdom, 2Thermo Fisher Scientific, Bremen, Germany, 3National Electrostatics Corp., Middleton, USA

Positive Ion Mass Spectrometry (PIMS) is a new technique for the analysis of 14C. The system analyses CO2 using an Electron Cyclotron Resonance Ion Source (ECRIS) and therefore requires apparatus for the introduction of samples as gas. A collaboration between Thermo Fisher Scientific (TFS), National Electrostatics Corp. (NEC) and the Scottish Universities Research Centre (SUERC) has been formed to integrate instruments into the PIMS system.

The integrated instruments includes the NEC Automated Gas Ampoule Transfer Equipment (AGATE) system, a TFS Elemental Analyser (EA), a TFS GasBench and a TFS Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometer (IRMS). These instruments are interfaced to a PIMS system via a Gas Sample Handling (GSH-NEC) system. This is designed to provide comprehensive quantitative elemental and isotopic analysis for a range of samples. Using this combination of instrument, analyses such as %C, %N, C/N ratio, 13C, 15N, 14C are possible for both solid and liquid, organic and inorganic samples. The PIMS system along with TFS instrumentation will be used to provide high precision and accuracy.

This package is currently being commissioned at SUERC and the initial architectural and operational aspects of the system will be introduced and discussed.


CMc has worked at WHOI, ETH and SUERC on CFAMS, AMS, MICADAS and PIMS systems. His expertise lies with interfacing apparatus such as EA, GC, crackers and IRMS to AMS systems for 14C analysis.

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Nov 16 2021


11:00 am - 11:45 am