The evolution of gc/ms technology: hp 6890/5973 gc/msd system

The Hewlett Packard (HP) 6890/5973 GC/MSD system, introduced in 1996, revolutionized the field of gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS). This bench-top instrument was the latest addition to the HP family of GC/MS systems, following the successful HP 5970 MSD introduced in the mid-1980s. The HP 6890/5973 GC/MSD system brought unprecedented power and versatility to small and medium-sized laboratories, enabling them to perform trace-level analysis of semi-volatile compounds with ease.

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The Power of Selective and Library-Searchable Capability

The HP 6890/5973 GC/MSD system offered a true mass spectrometry (MS) capability, providing selective and library-searchable data. This meant that analysts could confidently identify and quantify compounds of interest, even at trace levels. The system's sensitivity was further enhanced through careful optimization of operational parameters such as ionization energy, dynode voltages, and dwell time.

In the standard electron impact selected ion monitoring (SIM) mode, the HP 6890/5973 GC/MSD system achieved sub-picogram level sensitivity for chlorinated hydrocarbons. This level of sensitivity was comparable to traditional GC with selective detectors like the electron capture detector. However, the HP 6890/5973 GC/MSD system offered the additional advantage of computerized library search against a vast database of over 100 thousand spectra.

Compact Size and Mobile Laboratory Capability

One of the key advantages of the HP 6890/5973 GC/MSD system was its relatively compact size. This made it practical for use in mobile laboratories, allowing for on-site qualitative and quantitative analysis in spill emergency situations. The system offered both speed and accuracy, enabling rapid decision-making and response.

The Difference Between Agilent 6890 and 6890N

The Agilent 6890 and 6890N are two variations of the HP 6890/5973 GC/MSD system. While they share many similarities, there are a few key differences between the two models.

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One notable difference is the presence of a built-in network capability in the Agilent 6890N model. This allows for easy integration into laboratory networks, facilitating data sharing and remote control. The Agilent 6890, on the other hand, does not have this network capability.

Another difference lies in the availability of certain optional features. The Agilent 6890N offers additional options such as a pneumatics control module, which allows for automated control of gas flows. The Agilent 6890, however, does not have this feature.

Overall, both the Agilent 6890 and 6890N are highly capable GC/MSD systems that offer exceptional performance and reliability. The choice between the two models depends on specific laboratory requirements and the need for network integration and additional features.

The Hewlett Packard 6890/5973 GC/MSD system represents a significant milestone in the evolution of GC/MS technology. Its introduction in 1996 brought unprecedented power, sensitivity, and versatility to small and medium-sized laboratories. With its selective and library-searchable capability, the system enabled accurate identification and quantification of trace-level compounds. Its compact size made it practical for use in mobile laboratories, allowing for on-site analysis in emergency situations. The Agilent 6890 and 6890N variations of the system offer additional features and network integration capabilities, catering to diverse laboratory needs. Overall, the HP 6890/5973 GC/MSD system remains a highly regarded instrument in the field of analytical chemistry.

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