The water industry requires rapid and robust methods for a number of analytes, including acid herbicides. These compounds have been reported to have impacts in the environment and to human health, particularly if used in an uncontrolled manner. Automation of manual sample preparation procedures offer a number of advantages including reduction in costs and analyst time. The work described in this application note was performed in collaboration with Thames Water to provide a standalone sample preparation solution. The time taken to prepare the 42 samples manually was between 3 and 4 hours, whereas with the automated procedure, the time taken to prepare the 42 samples was reduced to approximately 1½ hours (and without analyst input). A comparison of the manual procedure to the automated method showed good agreement with slightly improved RSDs for the internal standards. The work demonstrated the benefits of automation as it uses less sample, is quicker and has improved method performance compared to the manual procedure.
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Offline Sample Preparation of Acid Herbicide Samples for LC-MS Analysis Using a Dual Head MultiPurpose Sampler