In a rapidly evolving regulatory environment with increasing concerns surrounding PFAS (per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances) contamination, analytical testing laboratories face significant challenges in achieving accurate detection and quantification. 

When it comes to PFAS testing, the future is now. Preparing your laboratory and investing in cost-effective, advanced analytical instrumentation has never been more important. We have developed validated workflows to meet your PFAS testing needs.

PFAS Single Image Workflow-1160x700

By working together on your PFAS analysis, we can help you:

  • Maximize testing potential with tailored PFAS workflows designed for environmental and food analytical testing labs, manufacturer QC labs, municipality/government labs, academia, and more.
  • Address current regulatory requirements with a comprehensive, full-spectrum portfolio for targeted PFAS workflow solutions. 
  • Enable the discovery of unknown compounds in waters, solids, air or food through technologies and software for non-targeted PFAS workflows.
  • Access dedicated technical support and resources as workflows continue to evolve around the growing number of PFAS found around the globe.

 

We have created dedicated PFAS workflow solutions, tailored to help your laboratory meet the specific needs of regional PFAS regulatory requirements. Each detailed workflow includes all aspects of technologies, from manual or automated sample extraction to chromatographic separation, detection and quantification of compounds.

AOF workflow

Although many molecules include fluorine as part of their chemical structure, the amount of fluorine in PFAS is critical to its identification. Fluorine content can be determined as total adsorbable organic fluorine (AOF), which is measured using combustion ion chromatography (CIC). The CIC method is suitable for regulatory methods such as US EPA Draft Method 1621.

This is a highly sensitive technique that can be used to discover new or unexpected PFAS by determining whether the mass of fluorine present is greater than accounted for in a targeted list.

Regulatory method

Validated method

Combustion ion chromatography system

Combustion ion chromatography system

Thermo Scientific Chromeleon Chromatography Data System (CDS)

Thermo Scientific Chromeleon Chromatography Data System (CDS)

Combustion ion chromatography

Software and reporting

Targeted analysis workflows for PFAS testing

Regulatory PFAS methods using LC- and GC-triple quadrupole mass spectrometry: For the targeted analysis of specific PFAS this powerful technique enables precise quantification and identification, even at low (ng/L) concentrations.

Targeted PFAS workflow for water – 100 µl direct injection method

Direct injection methods are based on sample dilution, filtration and acidification followed by LC-MS/MS analysis. This direct analysis method can detect 24 diverse types of PFAS compounds in a wide variety of non-drinking water matrices and used in methods such as US EPA 8327 and ASTM D7979. 

ISO 21675:2019 is widely used in Europe and specifies a method for the determination of selected PFAS in non‑filtrated waters. In the EU, countries must adhere to the Drinking Water Directive (EU) 2020/2184 where 20 PFAS are regulated. Additionally, the number of target PFAS may vary by country. For example, the UK targets 47, France 7, Italy 18 and Belgium 43 PFAS.

Regulatory method

Validated method

Thermo Scientific Vanquish Duo UHPLC System

Thermo Scientific Vanquish Flex UHPLC System  + Thermo Scientific Acclaim 120 C18 Column

Thermo Scientific TSQ Altis Triple Quadrupole Mass Spectrometer

Thermo Scientific TSQ Altis Plus Triple Quadrupole Mass Spectrometer

Chromeleon Chromatography Data System (CDS)

Chromeleon CDS

Chromatography and mass spectrometry analysis and detection

Software and reporting

Targeted PFAS workflow for water and solid matrices – US EPA Method 1633

Several PFAS regulatory methods require sample preconcentration and/or cleanup using solid-phase extraction (SPE) prior to LC-MS/MS analysis. The Thermo Scientific Dionex AutoTrace 280 can be used for offline automated sample preparation to increase sample throughput and reduce turnaround time when performing analysis following US EPA Method 1633 for PFAS in aqueous, solid, biosolids, and tissue samples or using similar EU methods.

Regulatory method

Validated method

Thermo Scientific Vanquish Duo UHPLC System

Vanquish Flex UHPLC System  +  Acclaim 120 C18 Column

Thermo Scientific TSQ Altis Triple Quadrupole Mass Spectrometer

TSQ Altis Plus Triple Quadrupole Mass Spectrometer

Chromeleon Chromatography Data System (CDS)

Chromeleon CDS

Chromatography and mass spectrometry
analysis and detection

Software and reporting

Targeted PFAS workflow for air quality

The US EPA is working to better regulate air emissions of PFAS and Other Test Method 45 (OTM-45) is a measurement of specific PFAS from stationary sources. In Europe, a research method has been developed for both neutral and ionic PFAS in ambient air using thermal desorption coupled to gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (TD-GC-MS/MS) for the analysis of 19 target PFAS. 

Thermal desorption is a suitable technique for analysis of organic contaminants in air, including PFAS species. Stainless-steel thermal desorption tubes, packed with special sorbents, are used as sampling media to preconcentrate samples from hundreds of liters of air. The thermal desorption unit offers sequential and unattended analysis of up to 100 samples, eliminating the cost of liquid cryogen.

Regulatory method

Validated method

Thermal desorption unit

Thermal desorption unit

Gas chromatography column

Thermo Scientific TSQ 9610 Triple Quadrupole Mass Spectrometer + Thermo Scientific TRACE 1610 GC

Chromeleon Chromatography Data System (CDS)

Chromeleon CDS 

Chromatography and mass spectrometry
analysis and detection

Software and reporting

Non-targeted workflows for PFAS testing

​LC- and GC- high-resolution accurate mass spectrometry: For non-targeted analysis (NTA) of PFAS and other potential fluorine-containing compounds, using Thermo Scientific Orbitrap mass analyzer technology alongside advanced software provides comprehensive insights into PFAS contamination, ensuring regulatory compliance.​

More than 40,000 known PFAS (with more PFAS being actively discovered) dictate the need for comprehensive non-targeted analysis of PFAS by high-resolution accurate mass (HRAM) mass spectrometry and turnkey software to help you characterize your samples for reporting. A wide array of automated sample preparation options is available as these workflows are not currently limited to prescriptive regulatory methodologies.

 

View our collection of educational, on-demand webinars to give you a deeper understanding of PFAS testing. Alternatively, watch one of our informational videos to hear how Thermo Fisher Scientific is making it easier to perform analyses of PFAS compounds in environmental samples.

Science with a Twist

Dr. Lee Ferguson of Duke University discusses the impact of PFAS on our water supplies, what it means for

 

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