Single-particle aerosol mass spectrometry for the detection and identification of chemical warfare agent simulants

Audrey N. Martin, George R. Farquar, Matthias Frank, Eric E. Gard, David P. Fergenson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Scopus citations


Single-particle aerosol mass spectrometry (SPAMS) was used for the real-time detection of liquid nerve agent simulants. A total of 1000 dual-polarity time-of-flight mass spectra were obtained for micrometer-sized single particles each of dimethyl methyl phosphonate, diethyl ethyl phosphonate, diethyl phosphoramidate, and diethyl phthalate using laser fluences between 0.58 and 7.83 nJ/μm2, and mass spectral variation with laser fluence was studied. The mass spectra obtained allowed identification of single particles of the chemical warfare agent (CWA) simulants at each laser fluence used although lower laser fluences allowed more facile identification. SPAMS is presented as a promising real-time detection system for the presence of CWAs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6368-6375
Number of pages8
JournalAnalytical Chemistry
Issue number16
StatePublished - Aug 15 2007
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry

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