Specialized field of mass spectrometry/substance identification
The specialized field of "mass spectrometry/substance identification" is a part of the IFA's Division 2. In this field, material samples – generally of unknown composition – are analysed for organic constituents by means of gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS).
The primary purpose of these analyses is to identify unknown constituents, in order to permit the planning of ambient air monitoring at workplaces at which the materials concerned are applied. Samples are thus analysed at different ambient temperatures for volatile components (such as solvents), and substances are also identified which are not formed until the application process, such as decomposition products formed when plastics are subjected to thermal stresses.
In addition, non-volatile and low-volatility compounds are extracted from work materials, and the extracts likewise analysed by means of GC/MS. Examples include pesticides in various materials, and polychlorinated biphenyls, which are encountered in jointing materials during redevelopment measures. Special and more complex studies, such as quantitative analysis of the carcinogenic aromatic amine component in textile and leather azo dyes, can also be performed.