The use of a Q-q-Q(linear ion trap) instrument to obtain product ion spectra is described. The instrument is based on the ion path of a triple quadrupole mass spectrometer with Q3 operable as either a conventional RF/DC quadrupole mass filter or a linear ion trap mass spectrometer with axial ion ejection. This unique ion optical arrangement allows de-coupling of precursor ion isolation and fragmentation from the ion trap itself. The result is a high sensitivity tandem mass spectrometer with triple quadrupole fragmentation patterns and no inherent low mass cut-off. The use of the entrance RF-only section of the instrument as accumulation ion trap while the linear ion trap mass spectrometer is scanning enhances duty cycles and results in increased sensitivities by as much as a factor of 20. The instrument is also capable of all of the triple quadrupole scans including multiple-reaction monitoring (MRM) as well as precursor and constant neutral loss scanning. The high product ion scanning sensitivity allows the recording of useful product ion spectra near the MRM limit of quantitation.
Copyright 2003 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.