Determination of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons with molecular weight 300 and 302 in environmental-matrix standard reference materials by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry

Anal Chem. 2003 Jan 15;75(2):234-46. doi: 10.1021/ac0259111.


An analytical approach based on gas chromatography/ mass spectrometry (GC/MS) is presented for the measurement of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons with molecular weight (MW) 300 and 302 in environmental samples. Three different GC stationary phases [5% and 50% phenyl methylpolysiloxane and dimethyl (50% liquid crystalline) polysiloxane] were compared, and retention indexes (RI) are given for 23 individual MW 302 isomers. Identification of MW 300 and 302 isomers in four environmental-matrix Standard Reference Materials (SRMs) (SRM 1597, coal tar extract; SRM 1648 and SRM 1649a, air particulate matter; and SRM 1941, marine sediment) was based on the comparison of RI data and mass spectra from authentic standards. Dibenzo[a,l]pyrene, which is of considerable interest because of its high carcinogenicity, was identified and quantified in the four environmental-matrix SRMs. A total of 23 isomers of MW 302 and four isomers of MW 300 were quantified in four different environmental-matrix SRMs, and the results are compared to previously reported results based on liquid chromatography with fluorescence detection.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Environmental Pollutants / analysis
  • Environmental Pollutants / isolation & purification
  • Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry / methods*
  • Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry / standards
  • Molecular Weight
  • Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons / analysis
  • Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons / isolation & purification*
  • Reference Standards


  • Environmental Pollutants
  • Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons