Gas Chromatography

What is gas chromatography? This is a procedure used in separating different chemical substances. The operation begins with pouring a liquid into the device. It evaporates and converts to gas. It is also used to supervise industrial processes automatically. The gas streams are analyzed periodically.

Then, automatic responses are made to neutralize undesirable variations. The practice is exceedingly competent and sensitive. Its efficacy in the purification of compounds is remarkable.

But this does not still tell us what gas chromatography is used for. It helps determine the exact percentages of oxygen, nitrogen, and carbon dioxide. It helps to analyze air pollutants, alcohol in blood, essential oils, and food products.

At the onset of the method, they launch a test mix or specimen into a stream of a passive gas, commonly helium or argon, that responds as a carrier. Liquid samples are vaporized before injection into the carrier flow.


The first Russian chemist to perform chromatography was Tswett and this occurred in 1872-1919. His work was centered on separating colored plant pigments. By the 1930s, chromatography became prevalent as a practice.

Using GC grew to many fields, but the contemporary years have witnessed its use in pharmaceuticals.


Gas chromatography is a gradual and thorough process applied to Break up compounds that possess different boiling points and a few other properties. The procedure begins with injecting a liquid that flows below and evaporates as gas. The gas accumulated here could comprise many disparate types.

These are not clear to the naked eye and are embedded in exceedingly negligible quantities. They require an inert carrier gas to encourage the existing sample through. Using an inert gas is crucial because it does not react with the existing substances.

The next step is heating this up and granting it to pass through tubes. Because these tubes are significantly longer, they coil them. Being long allows them to present better separation. The last step is a detector that perceives the different compounds and percentages of them.

The detector supplies information to the computer where they are represented. You can do a thorough check on them. We know the image on the computer as a chromatogram. It looks like a graph.

The chromatography process functions in cooperation with two phases. First is the vapor or gas phase followed by the liquid phase also known as the stationary phase. The compounds that first make it to the end of the tube have an affinity to interact with the gas.

This indicates that they have low boiling points, hence evaporate readily. The compounds that are slower have higher boiling points and prefer to stay liquid and are still not ready to enter the base phase.

Separating compounds based on their boiling points is the principle on which chromatography operates. The smaller compounds typically escalate their way to the end in juxtaposition with bigger compounds.

The graph is a representation of the compounds. With intensity (number of elements) on the Y-axis and time on the X-axis. The initial peak is an indicator of the solvent used to dissolve the elements. The next peak marks the compound with the lower boiling point followed by the next peak with a higher boiling point.

Despite its efficiency, gas chromatography is coupled with other analytical techniques to give proper results. Techniques like mass spectrometry can assist people in discerning molecular weight so it makes it easier to narrow down the composition of the compound.

They separate the compounds based on their volatility or polarity. Their composition must be volatile to lead to separation. Their molecular weight should be below 1250.

They use gas chromatography techniques across most industries: for quality control to manufacture several products from cars to chemicals to pharmaceuticals; for research from the analysis of meteorites to natural products; and for safety from environmental to food to forensics.

GC is a crucial part of the petroleum industry. It helps in exploring crude oil and refining of finished products to research new petrochemicals. In the pharmaceutical industry, Gas chromatography is used to analyze volatile and semivolatile compounds.

While the use of Gas Chromatography is more distinguished in the quantitative summary of residual solvents in raw elements, it is further gaining traction for the contamination testing of process gases like nitrogen. Gas chromatography employs columns for analyzing different gases and separates them depending on their composition.


Using Gas Chromatography has proliferated. Its efficiency makes it possible for people to rely on it.  It helps people in conducting research and analysis.

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