PTR-MS analysis of reference and plant-emitted volatile organic compounds

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Ecology and Biodiversity
TitlePTR-MS analysis of reference and plant-emitted volatile organic compounds
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2007
AuthorsMaleknia, SD, Bell, T, Adams, MA
JournalInternational Journal of Mass Spectrometry
Pagination203 - 210
Date Published05/2007
AbstractProton transfer reaction-mass spectrometry (PTR-MS) was applied to the analysis of a series of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that emit from various plants. These include a group of alcohols (methanol, ethanol and butanol), carbonyl-containing compounds (acetic acid, acetone and benzaldehyde), isoprene, acetonitrile, tetrahydrofuran (THF), pyrazine, toluene and xylene and a series of terpenes (p-cymene, camphene, 2-carene, limonene, β-myrcene, α-pinene, β-pinene, γ-tepinene and terpinolene) and oxygen-containing terpenes (1,8-cineole and linalool). These mass spectral data were compared to an electron ionization (EI) database identifying that not all PTR-MS fragments were common to EI. PTR-MS studies of these reference compounds were utilized to identify VOCs emitted from Eucalyptus grandis leaf at a temperature range of 30–100 °C. In addition to protonated molecules (M + H)+, abundant proton-bound dimers or trimers were detected for alcohols, acetone, acetonitrile and THF. Abundant fragment ions attributed to the loss of water from these proton-bound clusters were also observed. The stability of butyl (C4H9+ m/z 57) and acetyl (CH3CO+ m/z 43) fragment ions directed the proton-transfer reactions of butanol and acetic acid. Abundant (M + H)+ ions were detected for pyrazine, THF, toluene and xylene, as well as for all terpenes except those containing oxygen. For linalool and 1,8-cineole, the loss of water generated an abundant fragment ion at m/z 137. PTR-MS fragmentation patterns for terpenes were proposed for m/z 81 (C6H9+), 93 (C7H9+), 95 (C7H11+), 107 (C8H11+), 109 (C8H13+), 119 (C9H11+), 121 (C9H13+) and 137 (loss of water for oxygen-containing terpenes; C10H17+). The relative abundances of (M + H)+ and fragments for all terpenes (except linalool) were dependent on the drift tube voltage and the optimum voltage for detection of molecular ions was different for various terpenes.
Short TitleInternational Journal of Mass Spectrometry
Refereed DesignationRefereed