(19)
(11)EP 2 689 244 B1

(12)EUROPEAN PATENT SPECIFICATION

(45)Mention of the grant of the patent:
17.06.2020 Bulletin 2020/25

(21)Application number: 12761517.7

(22)Date of filing:  16.03.2012
(51)International Patent Classification (IPC): 
G01N 30/46(2006.01)
G01N 30/34(2006.01)
G01N 30/72(2006.01)
G01N 30/10(2006.01)
G01N 30/32(2006.01)
(86)International application number:
PCT/US2012/029378
(87)International publication number:
WO 2012/129076 (27.09.2012 Gazette  2012/39)

(54)

VALVE AND SPLITTING SYSTEM FOR MULTI-DIMENSIONAL LIQUID ANALYSIS

VENTIL UND TEILUNGSSYSTEM FÜR MEHRDIMENSIONALE FLÜSSIGKEITSANALYSE

SOUPAPE ET SYSTÈME DE SÉPARATION POUR ANALYSE DE LIQUIDE MULTIDIMENSIONNELLE


(84)Designated Contracting States:
AL AT BE BG CH CY CZ DE DK EE ES FI FR GB GR HR HU IE IS IT LI LT LU LV MC MK MT NL NO PL PT RO RS SE SI SK SM TR

(30)Priority: 23.03.2011 US 201161466739 P

(43)Date of publication of application:
29.01.2014 Bulletin 2014/05

(73)Proprietor: Regents of the University of Minnesota
Minneapolis, MN 55455-2020 (US)

(72)Inventors:
  • SIMS, Carl
    Santa Rosa, CA 95403 (US)
  • CARR, Peter
    Minneapolis, MN 55455 (US)
  • FILGUEIRA, Marcelo
    Minneapolis, MN 55455 (US)

(74)Representative: Dilg, Andreas 
Dilg, Haeusler, Schindelmann Patentanwaltsgesellschaft mbH Leonrodstrasse 58
80636 München
80636 München (DE)


(56)References cited: : 
WO-A1-2008/150763
US-A1- 2005 214 130
US-A1- 2010 238 444
US-B1- 6 183 635
US-A1- 2002 146 349
US-A1- 2009 090 174
US-A1- 2010 288 027
  
  • MARCELO R. FILGUEIRA ET AL: "Improving Peak Capacity in Fast Online Comprehensive Two-Dimensional Liquid Chromatography with Post-First-Dimension Flow Splitting", ANALYTICAL CHEMISTRY, vol. 83, no. 24, 23 October 2011 (2011-10-23), - 15 December 2011 (2011-12-15), pages 9531-9539, XP055020004, ISSN: 0003-2700, DOI: 10.1021/ac202317m
  • POTTS L W ET AL: "The impact of sampling time on peak capacity and analysis speed in on-line comprehensive two-dimensional liquid chromatography", JOURNAL OF CHROMATOGRAPHY, ELSEVIER SCIENCE PUBLISHERS B.V, NL, vol. 1217, no. 36, 3 September 2010 (2010-09-03), pages 5700-5709, XP027208418, ISSN: 0021-9673 [retrieved on 2010-07-15]
  • ROBERT E. MURPHY ET AL: "Effect of Sampling Rate on Resolution in Comprehensive Two-Dimensional Liquid Chromatography", ANALYTICAL CHEMISTRY, vol. 70, no. 8, 15 April 1998 (1998-04-15) , pages 1585-1594, XP055134758, ISSN: 0003-2700, DOI: 10.1021/ac971184b
  
Note: Within nine months from the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent, any person may give notice to the European Patent Office of opposition to the European patent granted. Notice of opposition shall be filed in a written reasoned statement. It shall not be deemed to have been filed until the opposition fee has been paid. (Art. 99(1) European Patent Convention).


Description

Field of the Invention



[0001] The present invention relates to flow systems used in analytical chemistry, and more particularly to a splitting system for splitting mobile phase flow in a multi-dimensional liquid chromatography apparatus.

Background of the Invention



[0002] Separation techniques such as high pressure liquid chromatography (HPLC) are commonly used in analytical chemistry. However, HPLC is limited by the resolution which can be achieved using a single chromatographic separation column. Attempts have been made to combine two or more liquid chromatographs into a hybrid instrument to achieve enhanced resolution of more compounds than can be achieved in a single separation column. As sample complexity has increased over the years, a need has arisen for greater resolving power than that achievable through the use of a single HPLC column.

[0003] Some analytical instruments involve the combination of HPLC and mass spectrometry for further identification of the sample. Typical mass spectrometers, however, analyze a significantly lower flow rate than the flow rate typically passed through a HPLC separation column. Analysts have therefore attempted to operate such combined instrumentation by reducing the HPLC mobile phase flow rate to a less than optimum value so that the outflow rate from the HPLC separation matches the liquid flow capacity of the mass spectrometer. Such reduction in flow rate through the HPLC column tends to reduce the available chromatographic resolution. To avoid the reduction in HPLC resolution, flow splitters have been employed in a full-flow regime to split a portion of the flow from the outlet of the HPLC column or detector to the inlet of the mass spectrometer, and the balance of the flow to another detector or to waste. Typical commercial flow splitters make use of resistive tubing elements to split the liquid flow into two or more distinct flow streams. Example flow splitters are described in U.S. Patent No. 6,289,914, and European patent application Publication No. EP 495255A1. Resistive division of liquid flow is difficult to maintain at uniform levels. Factors such as variable viscosity of the mobile phase, temperature, and any variations in the flow path during the analysis may cause the split ratio between the respective flow paths to change. Such variability becomes of particular concern when multiple dimension liquid chromatography is practiced.

[0004] One example chromatographic application where mobile phase splitting is desirable is two-dimensional liquid chromatography (or LC LC), wherein the first dimension HPLC column effluent is introduced into a second dimension HPLC column, with no portion of the first dimension separation not being introduced into the second dimension column for subsequent "second dimension" separation. Those of ordinary skill in the art of HPLC analysis understand the various techniques are known for injecting a sample into a chromatographic column. In many cases, a sample volume is established in a multi-port valve, and thereafter injected into the chromatographic column by a fluid force generated by a pump. Samples may be introduced into a flowing mobile phase stream.

[0005] Theoretically, it is desirable to have the entire volume of the first dimension separation injected into the second dimension separation column, though such an approach remains impractical as the rate of the effluent from the first separation column is far too great to be directly injected into the second separation column. Traditionally, therefore, analysis of the "first dimension" separation has been accomplished by collection of the total volume of the effluent from the first separation column by fraction collection, and then re-injecting a representative sample of each fraction into the second dimension separation column.

[0006] In addition to flow rate mismatch, the developing chromatogram in the first dimension may contain increasing relative concentrations of organic solvent. The increasing relative concentration of organic solvent may be a result of the particular liquid chromatographic approach, in which an organic solvent is injected into the separation column after an aqueous mobile phase. As the relative concentration of organic solvent increases in the first dimension separation, injection of a fixed volume from the first dimension into the second dimension chromatograph further increases the relative organic solvent concentration during the second dimension separation. Under some conditions, injecting large volumes of organic solvent into the second dimension chromatograph is destructive to the second dimension separation. As the variation in organic solvent versus time occurs in the first dimension separation, the flow rate exiting from standard resistive flow splitters disposed downstream from the first separation column becomes unpredictable. Analysts therefore find it difficult to know the actual flow rate of sample available for injection into the second dimension separation column. An understanding of the sample flow rate is critical to control the organic solvent concentration in the second dimension separation column, and to ensure that no portion of the first dimension chromatograph is unsampled in the second dimension separation. Typical resistive flow splitters are not capable of providing analysts with the necessary information to consistently control analysis in the second dimension. Because of the limitations of standard resistive flow splitters, LC LC has not enjoyed wide usage in the art.

Summary of the Invention



[0007] The invention is defined by a multi-dimensional liquid analysis system according to claim 1 and a corresponding method for analyzing a liquid sample according to claim 9.

[0008] A flow splitting system includes a T-style junction having an inlet for receiving fluid exiting a first HPLC system separation column, a first outlet for permitting indirectly flow controlled outflow therefrom, the first outlet being fluidly coupled to a flow restricting device, and a second outlet for permitting directly flow controlled outflow therefrom. The second outlet is fluidly coupled to a positive displacement pump operable in a negative displacement mode or a positive displacement mode. The flow restricting device creates a pressure in the junction from 1 kilopascal to 10,000 kilopascals, and is an adjustable pressure regulator. The system further includes a positive displacement pump and valve system wherein a 3-port shear type valve is used to connect a pump piston and barrel to either the junction or to waste.

[0009] In some embodiments, the positive displacement pump is capable of being driven at a constant rate in the negative displacement mode and is capable of withstanding pressure caused by the flow restricting device connected to the first outlet of the junction.

[0010] In some embodiments, the positive displacement pump is driven at a variable rate in the negative displacement mode.

[0011] In some embodiments, the positive displacement pump is driven at a negative volume displacement rate which is less than the rate of solvent inflow into the junction from the first dimension HPLC system.

[0012] In some embodiments, a 6-port sample injection valve for a second dimension HPLC system is placed between the positive displacement pump and the second outlet of the junction.

[0013] In some embodiments, a 10-port valve configured as a dual-loop injector for a second dimension HPLC system is placed between the positive displacement pump and the second outlet of the junction.

[0014] In some embodiments, the first outlet of the junction is connected to an inlet of a mass spectrometer.

[0015] In some embodiments, a draw time in which the positive displacement pump draws sample into the second dimension injection valve is equal to or slightly less or slightly more than an analysis time for a second dimension separation.

[0016] In some embodiments, an injection loop volume in the second dimension 6-port injection valve is either partially filled or fully filled during a time of analysis of a previously injected sample and at a rate such that a complete representative sampling of all compounds exiting from the first dimension HPLC system enter a sample loop in the second dimension injection valve.

[0017] In some embodiments, injection of the sample contained within the sample loop of the second dimension injection valve takes place within one time standard deviation of any analysis peak in a separation of the sample performed by the first dimension HPLC system separation column.

[0018] In some embodiments, the time that the second dimension injection valve remains in an inject position is less than 10 percent of the total analysis time of the second dimension HPLC system separation column.

[0019] A flow splitting system for liquid chromatography includes a T-style junction having an inlet for receiving fluid exiting a first HPLC system flow-through detector, a first outlet for permitting indirectly flow controlled outflow therefrom, the first outlet being fluidly coupled to a flow restricting device, and a second outlet for permitting directly controlled outflow therefrom. The second outlet is fluidly coupled to a positive displacement pump operable in a negative displacement mode or a positive displacement mode. The flow restricting device creates a pressure in the junction from 1 kilopascal to 10,000 kilopascals, or the maximum backpressure that said detector can withstand, and the flow restricting device is an adjustable pressure regulator. The system further includes a positive displacement pump and valve system wherein a 3-port shear type valve is used to connect a pump piston and barrel to either the junction or to waste.

[0020] In some embodiments, the positive displacement pump is capable of being driven at a constant rate in the negative displacement mode and is capable of withstanding pressure caused by the flow restricting device connected to the first outlet of the junction.

[0021] In some embodiments, the positive displacement pump is driven at a negative volume displacement rate which is less than the rate of solvent inflow into the junction from a first dimension HPLC system.

[0022] In some embodiments, a 6-port sample injection valve for a second dimension HPLC system fluidly coupled between the positive displacement pump and the second outlet of the junction.

[0023] In some embodiments, a 10-port injection valve configured as a dual-loop injector for a second dimension HPLC system is fluidly coupled between the positive displacement pump and the second outlet of the junction.

[0024] In some embodiments, the first outlet of the junction is connected to an inlet of a mass spectrometer.

Brief Description of the Drawings



[0025] 

Figure 1 a schematic view of a system of the present invention;

Figure 2 a schematic view of a system of the present invention;

Figure 3 a schematic view of a system of the present invention;

Figure 4 a schematic view of a system of the present invention;

Figure 5 a schematic view of a system of the present invention; and

Figure 6 a schematic view of a system not forming part of the present invention.


Detailed Description of the Preferred Embodiments



[0026] To effectuate consistent splitting of effluent flow from a first dimension analysis column in a manner to preserve the first dimension separation resolution, a positive displacement pump, such as a syringe pump, may be employed in a negative displacement mode to intake fluid at a specific rate from one outlet of a flow splitter. The resultant flow from a second outlet of the flow splitter is also therefore controlled. Such control dictates that the flow rate in both outlets of the split is known.

[0027] A first schematic diagram of an arrangement of the present invention is provided in Figure 1. Analysis system 10 includes a first dimension separation system 12, and a second dimension separation system 14, wherein mobile phase is driven through a first dimension separation column 16 by a first dimension pump 18. First dimension outflow 20 from column 16 may be delivered to a first dimension chromatographic detector 22, or may first be split by a flow splitter. Flow rate into flow splitter 24 is controlled by first dimension pump 18, which defines the flow rate of mobile phase through first dimension column 16. Flow splitter 24 may comprise a T-style junction fitting having a first inlet and first and second outlets, such as that available from Kinesis-USA as a "Micro-Splitter Valve 10-32/6-32 Port 55 Needle (EA)". In the arrangement illustrated in Figure 1, a first outlet 26 from flow splitter 24 comprises a waste stream, while a second outlet 28 from flow splitter 24 is at least intermittently fluidly coupled to flow control pump 30. In other embodiments, however, first outlet 26 may comprise a flow stream of known flow rate for delivery to a secondary analysis system, such as a mass spectrometer. System 10 is arranged such that first outlet 26 need only have sufficient flow restriction to avoid over-pressurization of pump 30 during the time that pump 30 controls fluid flow through second outlet 28. In such a manner, control is exerted over both first and second outlets 26, 28 of flow splitter 24 through control of the fill rate of pump 30 in a negative displacement mode. Consequently, no additional unswept volume is interposed between flow splitter 24 and any detection means (such as a mass spectrometer) fluidly coupled to first outlet 26.

[0028] Analysis system 10 performs chemical analysis of liquid sample pumped into first and second dimension columns 16, 34. For example, one or more of the dimensions may involve liquid chromatography, HPLC, preparative-scale liquid chromatography, supercritical fluid analysis, gel permeation chromatography, other chromatography analysis, and combinations thereof. In any particular application, the first and second dimensions are each chromatographic columns for evaluating a liquid sample. In some embodiments, such liquid chromatography may be "high pressure liquid chromatography" or "high performance liquid chromatography" (HPLC), which is a common technique for performing chromatographic separations of solutions of compounds delivered to an injection valve or "autosampler" by pump for injection into the chromatographic separation column. Liquids and liquid mixtures used to transport the compounds are referred to herein as the "mobile phase". The "stationary phase" of liquid chromatography is typically the packing materials within the separation columns 16, 34.

[0029] As indicated above, flow control pump 30 may typically be a positive displacement pump having a displacement volume that is filled in a negative displacement mode, and discharged in a positive displacement mode. An example positive displacement pump is a syringe pump, in which a plunger within a cylinder acts in a negative displacement mode to draw liquid into the cylinder through controlled withdrawal of the plunger that creates a negative pressure within the cylinder to draw liquid therein. Movement of the plunger in an opposite direction establishes a "positive displacement mode", wherein a positive pressure is created in the cylinder, so that the contents of the cylinder are discharged therefrom.

[0030] Flow control pump 30 may be placed downstream of any valve in second outlet stream 28, such that splitting of outflow 20 may be precisely controlled at known rates by controlling the rate at which pump 30 draws fluid through second outlet stream 28. So long as the second outlet stream 28 does not exceed the total flow rate at outlet flow 20, flow volume versus time is known precisely in both first and second outlet streams 26, 28.

[0031] In the embodiment illustrated in Figure 1, splitter 24 may be positioned between an outlet of first dimension column 16 and a second dimension injection valve 32. Depending upon the maximum volume of the first dimension mobile phase from outlet 20 to be injected into second dimension separation column 34, a fixed volume sample loop 36 of such maximum volume may be incorporated with the second dimension injection valve 32 in the form of a tube, channel, or other vessel capable of temporarily containing the volume of sample mobile phase. Sample loop 36 is more clearly illustrated in Figure 2, with second dimension injection valve 32 being a 6-port injection valve, as is known in the art. In this embodiment, sample loop 36 has a volume that is equal to or greater than the desired sample volume deliverable to the second dimension column 34. The programmed flow rate of pump 30 may be substantially equal to such sample volume divided by the analysis time required of the second dimension column 34. Such calculated withdrawal flow rate of flow stream 42 ensures that a representative sample of all mobile phase passing through flow splitter 24 is delivered to second dimension column 34. The following sets forth a relationship for an example control scheme for pump 30 to establish an appropriate withdrawal flow rate from first dimension outflow 20, and to therefore retain a sufficient second dimension sample delivery flow rate to ensure complete chromatographic analysis of mobile phase in second outlet stream 28:

Wherein,
Fc =
controlled flow rate at pump flow stream 42
VL=
volume of sample loop 36
T2a=
analysis time of second dimension column 34
T2e=
equilibration time of second dimension


[0032] The "equilibration time" of the second dimension is the time required to "flush" the second dimension column of an opposite-phase solvent. For example, certain HPLC analyses are performed by first passing an aqueous phase through the column, followed by an organic phase, with the sample being injected as appropriate into one or both of the aqueous/organic phases. The sample is eluted through the chromatographic column through the sequence of alternating aqueous/organic phases. Once the sample has finished eluting through the chromatographic column, it is desired that the column be "cleared" of any remaining aqueous/organic phase that is opposite to the initial mobile phase in the subsequent sample analysis. Therefore, in the example of a sample tested with first an aqueous phase, followed by an organic phase, such organic phase is preferably "flushed" from the column with blank aqueous phase (such as water) prior to initiating the subsequent sample sequence. This "flushing" time is the "equilibration time" utilized in the above relationship.

[0033] An alternative embodiment is illustrated in Figure 3, wherein first dimension detector 22 is positioned downstream of flow splitter 24 in fluid communication with first outlet stream 26. A flow restrictor 50 may be employed downstream of detector 22, or between splitter 24 and first dimension detector 22, in order to provide sufficient flow restriction to enable pump 30 to operably control flow division at splitter 24. Positioning flow restrictor 50 upstream of first dimension detector 22 may eliminate back pressure applied to detector 22 to improve sampling accuracy. In any case, however, flow restrictor 50 is optionally included, and is not necessary for the operation of the present invention.

[0034] A further embodiment of the invention is illustrated in Figures 4 and 5, wherein second dimension injection valve 32 is a 10-port valve, as is known in the art. In such embodiment, two distinct flow paths may be established for use as a double loop injector. In a first flow path, sample may be directed through a first sample loop 36a directly, while in a second flow path, sample may be directed through a second sample loop 36b on valve 32. The difference in flow paths and the difference in resistance to flow is negated when using a flow splitter driven by a pump 30 as described herein. First sample loop 36a may be filled while the sample within second sample loop 36b is analyzed in second dimension column 34. In this case, pump 30 may be operated in a negative displacement mode to draw mobile phase from first dimension outlet stream 20 sequentially into each of first and second sample loops 36a, 36b. The draw rate through second outlet 28 may be such that the sample loop volume being filled represents a volume suitable to be consumed over the entire time of the analysis and the equilibration of the second dimension analysis (T2a + T2e). First and second sample loops 36a, 36b may be alternately filled and injected to second dimension column 34. An advantage of this technique is that each sample loop 36a, 36b is fully washed by the mobile phase of the second dimension over the entire time of analysis to eliminate carryover.

[0035] A waste discharge cycle of pump 30 is illustrated in Figure 5. A valve 54 may be employed to alternate between intake of mobile phase through flow stream 42 (as shown in Figures 2-4) and discharge to waste 56 through waste flow line 58 (as shown in Figures 5 and 6). In one embodiment, syringe pump 30 may be operated in a positive displacement mode to discharge its accumulated contents in a discharge time period (Td) that is less than one standard deviation in time for an analysis peak occurring in the first dimension separation. In this manner, no particular chromatographic analysis peak remains unsampled in the second dimension chromatograph 34. In one embodiment, therefore, discharge time Td may be less than about 1 second.

[0036] Discharge from the pump 30 may occur only at intervals in which the mobile phase substantially fills the displacement volume of pump 30. For example, first and second sample loops 36a, 36b may each be 20 microliters in volume, while syringe pump 30 may have a displacement volume of 5 ml. As a result, the displacement volume of pump 30 may become filled only after 125 injections into the second dimension chromatograph 34.

[0037] A further system not forming part of the invention is illustrated in Figure 6, wherein system 110 includes a flow splitter 124 disposed downstream from a first dimension column 116. First outlet stream 126 from flow splitter 124 is fluidly coupled to an inlet of a secondary analysis device 170, such as a mass spectrometer. A second outlet stream 128 from flow splitter 124 is fluidly coupled to a pump 130 to control the flow rate division at flow splitter 124. As described above, pump 138 programmably removes solvent from outflow stream 120 at a desired rate, such that the inlet flow rate to secondary analysis device 170 though first outlet stream 126 is equal to outlet flow rate 120 from first dimension column 116, less the flow rate being drawn into pump 138 through second outlet stream 128.

[0038] Fluid flow into the head of a liquid chromatographic column is not always the total flow delivered to the inlet of the first dimension pump 18 if the pump 18 is used to mix the mobile phase components, such as in gradient elution chromatography. Such an effect is caused by volumetric shrinkage of mixing, which results in the mixed mobile phase volume being less than the sum of the two individual liquid volumes. To accommodate such volumetric shrinkage of mixing, pump 30, 138 may be programmed according to the concentration of individual components of the mobile phase. An example relationship for such pump programming may be as follows:

Wherein:
Fi =
indirect flow rate
k =
volumetric shrinkage factor
Fo =
flow rate at outlet 120


[0039] Although an HPLC pump delivers a constant flow of each individual solvent to a mixing point, the total flow rate from the mixing point may be different from the sum of the individual liquid flows. As such, flow into an HPLC column may be greater than the flow rate out of the HPLC column when temperature is constant. The pump 30, 138 may therefore be adjusted to accommodate a difference between the inlet and outlet flow rates. Moreover, if the first dimension HPLC column 16, 116 is heated, the use of a pressurized, negative displacement flow splitter permits all points of the second outlet stream 28, 128 to be pressurized such that boiling or outgassing of the mobile phase will not cause intermittent flow. In fact, when a first dimension column 16, 116 is heated, the use of negative displacement flow splitting may be the only effective method for loading the sample loop of the injector without boiling of the solvent.


Claims

1. A multi-dimensional liquid analysis system (10), comprising:

a first separation system (12) including a first separation column (16) for chromatographically separating a liquid mobile phase into a first dimension outflow (20) having a first dimension outflow rate;

a flow splitter (24) for splitting said first dimension outflow (20) into a first split outlet flow (26) and a second split outlet flow (28);

a flow control pump (30) for withdrawing said second split outlet flow (28) from said flow splitter (24) at a controlled withdrawal flow rate (Fc) that defines a first split outlet flow rate as the difference between said first dimension outflow rate and said withdrawal flow rate; and

a second separation system (14) including a sample loop (36) and a second separation column (34), wherein said second separation system (14) is configured such that said sample loop (36) receives a sample volume of said second split outlet flow (28), and wherein said second separation column (34) is for chromatographically separating said sample volume of said second split outlet flow (28),

wherein said controlled withdrawal flow rate (Fc) is:

VL being the volume of the sample loop (36),

T2a being an analysis time of the second separation column (34),

T2e being an equilibration time of the second separation column (34).


 
2. A multi-dimensional liquid analysis system (10) as in Claim 1 wherein said flow control pump (30) is a positive displacement pump arranged to establish said second split outlet flow (28) while operating in a negative displacement mode.
 
3. A multi-dimensional liquid analysis system (10) as in Claim 2 wherein said flow control pump (30) is a syringe pump.
 
4. A multi-dimensional liquid analysis system (10) as in Claim 1, including a multiple-port injection valve (32) for injecting said second split outlet flow (28) into said second separation column (34), said injection valve (32) including a first sample loop (36a) having a volume that is equal to or greater than Vd, a volume of said second split outlet flow (28) needed for analysis by said second separation column (34), said first sample loop (36a) defining a first flow path of said second split outlet flow (28) to said second separation column (34).
 
5. A multi-dimensional liquid analysis system (10) as in Claim 4, wherein said sample volume is a first sample volume, wherein said injection valve (32) includes a second sample loop (36b) having a volume that is equal to or greater than Vd, wherein said second separation system (14) is configured such that said second sample loop receives a second sample volume of said second split outflow, said second sample loop (36b) defining a second flow path of said second split outlet flow (28) to said second separation column (34) that is distinct from said first flow path.
 
6. A multi-dimensional liquid analysis system (10) as in Claim 1 wherein said flow splitter (24) comprises a T-style junction.
 
7. A multi-dimensional liquid analysis system (10) as in Claim 1, including a flow restrictor (50) restricting said first split outflow to create a fluid pressure at said flow splitter (24) of 1-10000 kilopascals.
 
8. A multi-dimensional liquid analysis system (10) as in Claim 1, including a liquid analysis device fluidly coupled to said first split outlet flow (26) downstream from said flow splitter (24).
 
9. A method for analyzing a liquid sample, said method comprising:

(a) delivering the liquid sample to a first liquid analysis apparatus (10) including a first chromatographic separation column (16) for identifying one or more chemical components of the liquid sample, said first liquid analysis apparatus (10) yielding a first dimension liquid outflow (20) at a first dimension outflow rate;

(b) splitting, with a flow splitter (24) the first dimension liquid outflow (20) into a first split outlet flow (26) and a second split outlet flow (28);

(c) withdrawing, by a flow control pump (30), a sample volume of said second split outlet flow (28) from the flow splitter (24) into a sample loop (36) at a withdrawal flow rate (Fc) that is less than said first dimension outlet flow rate; and

(d) delivering the sample volume to the second chromatographic separation column (34) for identifying one or more chemical components thereof,

wherein said controlled withdrawal flow rate (Fc) is:

VL being the volume of the sample loop (36),

T2a being an analysis time of the second separation column (34),

T2e being an equilibration time of the second separation column (34).


 


Ansprüche

1. Ein multi-dimensionales Flüssigkeit Analyse System (10), aufweisend:

ein erstes Trenn System (12) umfassend eine erste Trennsäule (16) zum chromatographischen Trennen einer flüssigen mobilen Phase in eine ersten Dimension Ausfluss (20), der eine erste Dimension Ausfluss Rate hat;

einen Fluss Teiler (24) zum Teilen des ersten Dimension Ausflusses (20) in einen ersten geteilten Ausgang Fluss (26) und einen zweiten geteilten Ausgang Fluss (28);

eine Fluss Steuer Pumpe (30) zum Abziehen von dem zweitem geteiltem Ausgang Fluss (28) von dem Fluss Teiler (24) bei einer gesteuerten Abzieh Fluss Rate (FC), die definiert eine erste geteilte Ausgang Fluss Rate als die Differenz zwischen der ersten Dimension Ausfluss Rate und Abzieh Fluss Rate; und

ein zweitens Trenn System (14) umfassend eine Probenschleife (36) und eine zweite Trennsäule (34), wobei das zweites Trenn System (14) so konfiguriert ist,

dass die Probenschleife (36) erhält ein Probenvolumen von dem zweitem geteiltem Ausgang Fluss (28), und wobei die zweite Trennsäue (34) ist für chromatographisches Trennen von Probenvolumen von dem zweitem geteiltem Ausgang Fluss (28),

wobei die gesteuerte Abzieh Fluss Rate (Fc) ist:

wobei

VL als Volumen der Probenschleife (36) ist,

T2a eine Analysenzeit der zweiten Trennsäule (34) ist,

T2e eine Äquilibrier Zeit der zweiten Trennsäule (34) ist.


 
2. Ein multi-dimensionales Flüssigkeit Analyse System (10) wie in Anspruch 1, wobei dieFluss Steuer Pumpe (30) eine positive Verdrängerpumpe ist, angeordnet um herzustellen den zweiten geteilten Ausgang Fluss (28) während sie in einem negativen Verdräng Modus läuft.
 
3. Ein multi-dimensionales Flüssigkeit Analyse System (10) wie in Anspruch 2, wobei die Fluss Steuer Pumpe (30) eine Spritzenpumpe ist.
 
4. Ein multi-dimensionales Flüssigkeit Analyse System (10) wie in Anspruch 1, umfassend ein mehrfach-Öffnung Injektion Ventil (32) zum Injizieren von dem zweiten geteilten Ausgang Fluss (28) in die zweite Trennsäule (34) hinein,
wobei das Injektion Ventil (32) umfasst eine erste Probenschleife (36a) mit einem Volumen das gleich oder größer ist als Vd, ein Volumen von dem zweitem Ausgang Fluss (28) benötigt für Analyse mittels der zweiten Trennsäule (34),
wobei die erste Probenschleife (36a) definiert einen ersten Fluss Pfad von dem zweiten geteilten Ausgang Fluss (28) zu der zweiter Trennsäule (34).
 
5. Ein multi-dimensionales Flüssigkeit Analyse System (10) wie in Anspruch 4, wobei das Probenvolumen ein erstens Probenvolumen ist, wobei das Injektion Ventil (32) umfasst eine zweite Probenschleife (36b) definierend einen zweiten Fluss Pfad mit einem Volumen, das gleich ist oder größer als Vd, wobei das zweites Trenn System (14) so konfiguriert ist,
dass die Probenschleife erhält ein zweites Probenvolumen von der zweitem geteiltem Ausfluss, die zweite Probenschleife (36b) definierend einen zweiten Fluss Pfad von dem zweiten geteilten Ausgang Fluss (28) zu der zweiter Trennsäule (34) der unterschiedlich ist von dem ersten Fluss Pfad.
 
6. Ein multi-dimensionales Flüssigkeit Analyse System (10) wie in Anspruch 1, wobei der Fluss Teiler (24) aufweist eine T-förmige Abzweigung.
 
7. Ein multi-dimensionales Flüssigkeit Analyse System (10) wie in Anspruch 1, umfassend einen Fluss Begrenzer (50) begrenzend den ersten geteilten Ausfluss, um zu erzeugen einen fluidischen Druck an dem Fluss Teiler (24) von 1-10000 Kilo Pascal.
 
8. Ein multi-dimensionales Flüssigkeit Analyse System (10) wie in Anspruch 1, umfassend eine Flüssigkeit Analyse Vorrichtung fluidische gekoppelt zu dem erstem geteilten Ausgang Fluss (26) hinter dem Fluss Teiler (24).
 
9. Ein Verfahren zum Analysieren einer Flüssigkeitsprobe, das Verfahren aufweisend:

(a) Fördern der Flüssigkeitsprobe zu einer ersten Flüssigkeit Analyse Apparatur (10) umfassend eine erste chromatographische Trennsäule (16) zum Identifizieren einer oder mehrerer chemischer Komponenten der Flüssigkeitsprobe, die erste Flüssigkeit Analyse Apparatur (10) erzeugend einen erste Dimension Flüssigkeit Ausfluss (20) bei einer ersten Dimension Ausfluss Rate;

(b) Teilen, mit einem Fluss Teiler (24), den ersten Dimension Flüssigkeit Ausfluss (20) in einen ersten geteilten Ausgang Fluss (26) und einen zweiten geteilten Ausgang Fluss (28);

(c) Abziehen, mittels einer Fluss Steuer Pumpe (30), ein Probenvolumen von dem zweitem geteiltem Ausgang Fluss (28) von dem Fluss Teiler (24) in eine Probenschleife (36) bei einer Abzieh Fluss Rate (Fc) die weniger ist als die erste Dimension Ausgang Fluss Rate;

(d) Fördern des Probenvolumens zu der zweiten chromatographischen Trennsäule (34) zum Identifizieren eines oder mehrerer chemischer Komponenten davon,

wobei die gesteuerte Abzieh Fluss Rate (FC) ist:

wobei

VL als Volumen der Probenschleife (36) ist,

T2a eine Analysenzeit der zweiten Trennsäule (34) ist,

T2e eine Äquilibrier Zeit der zweiten Trennsäule (34) ist.


 


Revendications

1. Système d'analyse de liquide multidimensionnel (10), comprenant :

un premier système de séparation (12) comportant une première colonne de séparation (16) pour séparer par chromatographie une phase liquide mobile en un écoulement sortant (20) de première dimension ayant un débit sortant de première dimension ;

un diviseur d'écoulement (24) pour diviser ledit écoulement sortant (20) de première dimension en un premier écoulement de sortie divisé (26) et un second écoulement de sortie divisé (28) ;

une pompe de contrôle d'écoulement (30) pour retirer ledit second écoulement de sortie divisé (28) dudit diviseur d'écoulement (24) à un débit de retrait contrôlé (Fc) qui définit un premier débit de sortie divisé comme la différence entre ledit débit sortant de première dimension et ledit débit de retrait ; et

un second système de séparation (14) comportant une boucle d'échantillon (36) et une seconde colonne de séparation (34), dans lequel ledit second système de séparation (14) est configuré de sorte que ladite boucle d'échantillon (36) reçoive un volume d'échantillon dudit second écoulement de sortie divisé (28), et dans lequel ladite seconde colonne de séparation (34) est destinée à séparer par chromatographie ledit volume d'échantillon dudit second écoulement de sortie divisé (28),

dans lequel ledit débit de retrait contrôlé (Fc) est :

VL étant le volume de la boucle d'échantillon (36),

T2a étant un temps d'analyse de la seconde colonne de séparation (34),

T2e étant un temps d'équilibrage de la seconde colonne de séparation (34).


 
2. Système d'analyse de liquide multidimensionnel (10) selon la revendication 1 dans lequel ladite pompe de contrôle d'écoulement (30) est une pompe à déplacement positif agencée pour établir ledit second écoulement de sortie divisé (28) lors d'un fonctionnement dans un mode à déplacement négatif.
 
3. Système d'analyse de liquide multidimensionnel (10) selon la revendication 2 dans lequel ladite pompe de contrôle d'écoulement (30) est une pompe à seringue.
 
4. Système d'analyse de liquide multidimensionnel (10) selon la revendication 1, comportant une vanne d'injection (32) à plusieurs voies pour injecter ledit second écoulement de sortie divisé (28) dans ladite seconde colonne de séparation (34), ladite vanne d'injection (32) comportant une première boucle d'échantillon (36a) ayant un volume qui est supérieur ou égal à Vd, un volume dudit second écoulement de sortie divisé (28) qui est nécessaire à l'analyse par ladite seconde colonne de séparation (34), ladite première boucle d'échantillon (36a) définissant un premier trajet d'écoulement dudit second écoulement de sortie divisé (28) vers ladite seconde colonne de séparation (34).
 
5. Système d'analyse de liquide multidimensionnel (10) selon la revendication 4, dans lequel ledit volume d'échantillon est un premier volume d'échantillon, dans lequel ladite vanne d'injection (32) comporte une seconde boucle d'échantillon (36b) ayant un volume qui est supérieur ou égal à Vd, dans lequel ledit second système de séparation (14) est configuré de sorte que ladite seconde boucle d'échantillon reçoive un second volume d'échantillon dudit second écoulement sortant divisé, ladite seconde boucle d'échantillon (36b) définissant un second trajet d'écoulement dudit second écoulement de sortie divisé (28) vers ladite seconde colonne de séparation (34), qui est distinct dudit premier trajet d'écoulement.
 
6. Système d'analyse de liquide multidimensionnel (10) selon la revendication 1 dans lequel ledit diviseur d'écoulement (24) comprend une jonction en T.
 
7. Système d'analyse de liquide multidimensionnel (10) selon la revendication 1, comportant un limiteur d'écoulement (50) limitant ledit premier écoulement sortant divisé pour créer une pression de fluide au niveau dudit diviseur d'écoulement (24) de 1 à 10 000 kilopascals.
 
8. Système d'analyse de liquide multidimensionnel (10) selon la revendication 1, comportant un dispositif d'analyse de liquide couplé de manière fluide audit premier écoulement de sortie divisé (26) en aval dudit diviseur d'écoulement (24).
 
9. Procédé d'analyse d'un échantillon liquide, ledit procédé comprenant :

(a) la distribution de l'échantillon liquide à un premier appareil d'analyse de liquide (10) comportant une première colonne de séparation (16) chromatographique pour identifier un ou plusieurs composants chimiques de l'échantillon liquide, ledit premier appareil d'analyse de liquide (10) donnant un écoulement sortant (20) de liquide de première dimension à un débit sortant de première dimension ;

(b) la division, avec un diviseur d'écoulement (24) de l'écoulement sortant (20) de liquide de première dimension en un premier écoulement de sortie divisé (26) et un second écoulement de sortie divisé (28) ;

(c) le retrait, par une pompe de contrôle d'écoulement (30), d'un volume d'échantillon dudit second écoulement de sortie divisé (28) du diviseur d'écoulement (24) vers une boucle d'échantillon (36) à un débit de retrait (Fc) qui est inférieur audit débit de sortie de première dimension, et

(d) la distribution du volume d'échantillon à la seconde colonne de séparation (34) chromatographique pour identifier un ou plusieurs composants chimiques de celui-ci,

dans lequel ledit débit de retrait contrôlé (Fc) est :

VL étant le volume de la boucle d'échantillon (36),

T2a étant un temps d'analyse de la seconde colonne de séparation (34),

T2e étant un temps d'équilibrage de la seconde colonne de séparation (34).


 




Drawing























Cited references

REFERENCES CITED IN THE DESCRIPTION



This list of references cited by the applicant is for the reader's convenience only. It does not form part of the European patent document. Even though great care has been taken in compiling the references, errors or omissions cannot be excluded and the EPO disclaims all liability in this regard.

Patent documents cited in the description