Plastics have become a major source of pollution due to their ubiquitous use in a wide array of products. Most plastics are not readily biodegradable and can wind up as litter or are simply disposed of in landfi lls. It is estimated that only 9% of the plastic in the US is recycled . Plastics discarded into the environment can be ingested by animals, break down into smaller particles which can also be ingested, or leach other compounds into the environment which can potentially cause damage. Leachates can include plasticizers, fl ame retardants, blowing agents, UV stabilizers, dyes and a host of other compounds added to the polymers.
Micro- and nanoplastics pollution in oceans, lakes and other water sources is an on-going and well-documented issue. Sources and entry ways of these plastics include grey water, surface runoff, and litter. Grey water is defi ned as the relatively clean wastewater from sources such as baths, sinks, washing machines and dishwashers. The very small plastic particle size precludes effi cient removal during the wastewater treatment process. As a result, fi sh and other aquatic life ingest the plastics, which introduces them into the food chain and causes possible adverse effects.
Solid Phase Extraction (SPE) using standard cartridges is widely regarded as the method of choice to extract analytes from samples with complex matrices or to extract and concentrate analytes from a wide variety of samples in general. In this paper, an automated SPE system is presented that is based on standard cartridges. It is shown that SPE with standard cartridges is easily and efficiently automated for use in LC/MS-based determination of illegal antibiotics in food products of animal origin. An established manual SPE method was easily transferred to the GERSTEL MultiPurpose Sampler (MPS) using the SPE option under MAESTRO software control.
An automated micro-scale chamber method based on 2,4-dinitrophenylhydrazine (DNPH) derivatization and Tenax TA adsorption, for sampling formaldehyde, acetaldehyde, acetone, acrolein, as well as volatile organic compounds (VOCs) was developed. Following the sampling step, the Tenax TA tubes were immediately transferred to a thermal desorption (TD)-GC/MS system for analysis. The DNPH tubes were transferred to an autosampler tray for temporary storage and later eluted and analyzed by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) using a diode array detector (DAD).