Microfabricated planar glass gas chromatography with photoionization detection.
ABSTRACT We report the development of a microfabricated gas chromatography system suitable for the separation of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and compatible with use as a portable measurement device. Hydrofluoric acid etching of 95x95mm Schott B270 wafers has been used to give symmetrical hemi-spherical channels within a glass substrate. Two matching glass plates were subsequently cold bonded with the channels aligned; the flatness of the glass surfaces resulted in strong bonding through van der Waals forces. The device comprised gas fluidic interconnections, injection zone and 7.5 and 1.4m long, 320microm internal diameter capillaries. Optical microscopy confirmed the capillaries to have fully circular channel profiles. Direct column heating and cooling could be achieved using a combination of resistive heaters and Peltier devices. The low thermal conductivity of glass allowed for multiple uniform temperature zones to be achieved within a single glass chip. Temperature control over the range 10-200 degrees C was achieved with peak power demand of approximately 25W. The 7.5m capillary column was static coated with a 2microm film of non-polar dimethylpolysiloxane stationary phase. A standard FID and a modified lightweight 100mW photoionization detector (PID) were coupled to the column and performance tested with gas mixtures of monoaromatic and monoterpene species at the parts per million concentration level. The low power GC-PID device showed good performance for a small set of VOCs and sub ng detection sensitivity to monoaromatics.