Whatever awaits… there’s a GC Orbitrap for that!
Q Exactive GC Orbitrap GC-MS/MS

The needs of routine and research labs in food safety, environmental, metabolomics, industry and pharma are constantly evolving and the challenges are diverse.

You are likely faced with…

  • Changing regulations and identification criteria
  • Increasing the scope of analysis
  • Having to measure compounds at ever-lower concentrations
  • Pressure to reduce cost per sample
  • Demands to increase sample throughput
  • Ensuring unknown identification is right first time

Thankfully, there is a GC Orbitrap for that!

The Thermo Scientific Q Exactive GC Orbitrap GC-MS/MS and the Thermo Scientific Exactive GC Orbitrap GC-MS systems provide a leading combination of sensitivity, mass accuracy, and resolving power that help answer today’s – and tomorrow’s – toughest analytical challenges. With best-in-class performance characteristics for both quantitative and discovery workflows, the systems allow a comprehensive characterization of complex samples.

When you need … There is a GC Orbitrap for that!
Confident compound identification Delivered through powerful and intelligent software tools.
Increased scope of analysis Add compounds without compound tuning through selective full scan. Choose your target compounds post acquisition.
Quantitative and qualitative analysis Six orders of dynamic range to enable components at all concentrations to be detected first time with high accuracy.
Consolidated methods Bring multiple methods onto a single system through the selectivity in full scan of up to 120,000 (FWHM m/z 200) resolving power.
Flexible data processing options Multiple identification points to detect target components and screen candidate compounds from electron ionization libraries
Retrospective data analysis Go back to the data at any time and answer different questions about and extract new knowledge from your sample.
Fast instrument set-up Standardized system checks performed in minutes with automated tune and calibration.

Speak to an expert


Valuable resources

Valuable resources

These new eBooks bring together key application notes, written in collaboration with scientists from around the world, that demonstrate how GC Orbitrap MS makes a real difference to environmental and food safety analysis.

Environmental analysis eBook  Food safety analysis eBook

Performance benefits

  • Resolving power of up to 120,000 (FWHM) at m/z 200. Exactive GC Orbitrap GC-MS system at up to 60,000.
    • Allows you to separate compounds of interest from chemical background
    • Can consolidate multiple methods on one platform with highly selective full scan
  • Routine sub-ppm mass accuracy
    • Increases confidence in your determinations
    • Eliminates the need to mass calibrate multiple times per day
  • < 6 fg OFN Instrument Detection Limit
    • Maximum sensitivity at all resolving power levels for the ability to detect and quantify compounds in full scan acquisition
  • EI/CI Thermo Scientific Extractabrite ion source removable under vacuum through vacuum interlock (standard on both the Exactive GC Orbitrap GC-MS and Q Exactive GC Orbitrap GC-MS/MS system)
    • CI allows molecular ion to be identified
    • Can propose identity of compounds not in existing spectral libraries
  • Vent-free column exchange with source plug
    • Replace or maintain a column or switch applications without having to vent the system, which saves time (no bake out required)
  • Advanced Quadrupole Technology (AQT) for superior precursor isolation
    • Improves sensitivity by delivering a focused ion beam to the detector
  • Variable electron voltage (VeV) technology for softer EI to promote molecular ion

There’s a GC Orbitrap for your application

Ultimate performance for targeted screening and quantitation

What if you could have additional points of confirmation? The high-resolution full-scan acquisition provided by the GC Orbitrap MS systems provides greater confidence that you aren’t missing critical sample components.

There is a GC Orbitrap for…

  • Quickly increasing your scope of analysis with highly selective full-scan acquisition
  • Accurate quantitation across six orders of magnitude
  • Eliminating the “maybe there” peaks through additional points of confirmation

High selectivity full-scan analysis brings new possibilities for routine contaminant detection and food research: ease of analytical set-up, almost unlimited scope, efficient automatic data processing and retrospective data analysis. The Exactive GC Orbitrap GC-MS system has the quantitative power of a GC triple quadrupole MS combined with the full-scan high-resolution, accurate-mass (HRAM) capability that only Orbitrap GC-MS technology can offer. This combination will improve lab productivity – forever.

Repeat injections (n=100) of a tomato extract spiked at 10 μg/Kg showing sensitivity is maintained over the 66 hours of continual operation.
Repeat injections (n=100) of a tomato extract spiked at 10 μg/Kg showing sensitivity is maintained over the 66 hours of continual operation.

Intelligent non-targeted screening and discovery

What if you could identify unknowns in a single run, even ones that aren’t in a compound library yet? And what if you could go back to previously collected data and find new contaminants of concern? With mass accuracy at sub-ppm levels and precise isotope pattern matching, candidate formulae are presented with a high degree of confidence in our intelligent software solutions.

There is a GC Orbitrap for…

  • Comprehensive detection and quantitation of emerging contaminants
  • Consolidating multiple methods onto a single system
  • Discovering unknown compounds quickly and with confidence

The Q Exactive GC-MS/MS system offers routine full-scan operation up to 120,000 resolving power (FWHM at m/z 200) with sub-1 ppm mass accuracy and full-scan sensitivity down to part-per-trillion concentrations. This capability drives truly powerful broad-scope screening methods for environmental applications where confident ultra-trace level detection is required in difficult matrices.

For environmental research into emerging contaminants, Thermo Scientific Compound Discoverer and Thermo Scientific TraceFinder software bring fast and confident discoveries to advance your science. Both software packages allow the use of multiple library sources for automatic compound identification and these can be both nominal mass or exact mass. These can be existing spectral libraries that have been developed in-house, commercially available libraries such as NIST or Wiley, or official Orbitrap GC-MS libraries.

Explore deeper into the metabolome

What if you could detect and quantitate more metabolites in a single run? With the broad dynamic range and sensitivity of the GC Orbitrap MS platform, you can detect from parts-per-trillion up to high ppm without dilutions or multiple injections per sample.

There is a GC Orbitrap for…

  • Detecting the highest number of metabolites
  • Making novel discoveries to support research and journal publication
  • Accurately detecting compounds at trace and high concentrations

Biology is complex. To decipher these complexities, metabolomics analysis demands sophisticated analytical technologies and advanced software solutions. The Thermo Scientific Orbitrap GC-MS HRAM Metabolomics Library is the first commercially available high resolution accurate mass (HRAM) for electron ionization (EI) GC-MS. It contains more than 900 retention-indexed unique entries from more than 800 metabolites, providing a broad coverage of primary and secondary metabolites (including volatiles) in plants, animals, and microbes. When used in combination with powerful Orbitrap GC-MS technology and unique Thermo Scientific software data processing tools, the difficult challenge of metabolite identification in untargeted experiments is easier than ever before.

High confidence confirmation when you need to identify unknown compounds fast and with accuracy

What if you could understand your samples better than ever before so your products could be better and safer than ever before? The sensitivity and high resolution of Orbitrap-based GC-MS systems and powerful yet easy-to-use software make this a reality.

There is a GC Orbitrap for…

  • Providing the right answer first time when an unknown contaminant is suspected
  • Flexible inlet options including direct analysis probes
  • Fast change of column and source configuration through vacuum probe interlock

Whether you need to ensure final products being shipped meet quality control standards, develop new products, or identify a suspect contaminant, an Orbitrap-based GC-MS system will give you a comprehensive profile of your sample. The unrivalled combination of high-resolution gas chromatography separations and highly sensitive HRAM acquisitions combined with intelligent identification software will help unlock answers to questions about the very nature of each sample you inject.

The flexibility to change quickly between EI and chemical ionization (CI) will provide further information and/or confirmations of compounds detected. Positive chemical ionization (PCI) can be used to yield molecular ions. These ions can be measured directly in the Orbitrap GC-MS system or after fragmentation in the HCD for further HRAM investigation into the compound structure.

Workflow for the Exactive GC Orbitrap GC-MS system for non-targeted screening of e-liquids.
Workflow for the Exactive GC Orbitrap GC-MS system for non-targeted screening of e-liquids.

Discover and identify what’s important

What if you could measure known impurities in your samples while simultaneously identifying new ones that could render your products unsafe? And what if you could do that in a single run? You can with the unparalleled mass accuracy and dynamic detection range of an HRAM Orbitrap GC-MS system.

There is a GC Orbitrap for…

  • Providing a comprehensive profile of your sample
  • Structural elucidation of new and unknown compounds
  • Detailed extractable and leachable studies
Deconvoluted peak (left) acquired spectrum and library spectrum (right) with search index score of 905.
Deconvoluted peak (left) acquired spectrum and library spectrum (right) with search index score of 905.

The investigation of potentially toxic chemicals leaching from packaging products or the detection of pharmaceutical impurities is a challenging analysis with compounds present at both ultra-trace and high concentrations in a complex sample. The Q Exactive GC Orbitrap GC-MS/MS system with a dynamic range across six orders, sub-ppm mass accuracy, and the ability to use liquid, headspace, and direct analysis probes makes this analytical platform essential for pharmaceutical research and development.

The challenges of nitrosamine analysis in pharmaceuticals relate to sensitivity, selectivity, and compliance all in the light of obtaining reliable and timely results. High sensitivity must be achieved to fulfill the regulation requirements and selectivity is critical to avoid false positive non-compliant results. Pharmaceutical manufacturers also must assess their products for any condition that might potentially lead to nitrosamine formation. Although quantification of known compounds is essential, screening for unknown precursor chemicals that may contribute to the formation of nitrosamines is equally important. For this, Orbitrap GC-MS systems combine quantitative and qualitative strengths in a single platform, allowing for targeted and untargeted screening of impurities and a deeper characterization of samples.

Ultimate performance for targeted screening and quantitation

What if you could have additional points of confirmation? The high-resolution full-scan acquisition provided by the GC Orbitrap MS systems provides greater confidence that you aren’t missing critical sample components.

There is a GC Orbitrap for…

  • Quickly increasing your scope of analysis with highly selective full-scan acquisition
  • Accurate quantitation across six orders of magnitude
  • Eliminating the “maybe there” peaks through additional points of confirmation

High selectivity full-scan analysis brings new possibilities for routine contaminant detection and food research: ease of analytical set-up, almost unlimited scope, efficient automatic data processing and retrospective data analysis. The Exactive GC Orbitrap GC-MS system has the quantitative power of a GC triple quadrupole MS combined with the full-scan high-resolution, accurate-mass (HRAM) capability that only Orbitrap GC-MS technology can offer. This combination will improve lab productivity – forever.

Repeat injections (n=100) of a tomato extract spiked at 10 μg/Kg showing sensitivity is maintained over the 66 hours of continual operation.
Repeat injections (n=100) of a tomato extract spiked at 10 μg/Kg showing sensitivity is maintained over the 66 hours of continual operation.

Intelligent non-targeted screening and discovery

What if you could identify unknowns in a single run, even ones that aren’t in a compound library yet? And what if you could go back to previously collected data and find new contaminants of concern? With mass accuracy at sub-ppm levels and precise isotope pattern matching, candidate formulae are presented with a high degree of confidence in our intelligent software solutions.

There is a GC Orbitrap for…

  • Comprehensive detection and quantitation of emerging contaminants
  • Consolidating multiple methods onto a single system
  • Discovering unknown compounds quickly and with confidence

The Q Exactive GC-MS/MS system offers routine full-scan operation up to 120,000 resolving power (FWHM at m/z 200) with sub-1 ppm mass accuracy and full-scan sensitivity down to part-per-trillion concentrations. This capability drives truly powerful broad-scope screening methods for environmental applications where confident ultra-trace level detection is required in difficult matrices.

For environmental research into emerging contaminants, Thermo Scientific Compound Discoverer and Thermo Scientific TraceFinder software bring fast and confident discoveries to advance your science. Both software packages allow the use of multiple library sources for automatic compound identification and these can be both nominal mass or exact mass. These can be existing spectral libraries that have been developed in-house, commercially available libraries such as NIST or Wiley, or official Orbitrap GC-MS libraries.

Explore deeper into the metabolome

What if you could detect and quantitate more metabolites in a single run? With the broad dynamic range and sensitivity of the GC Orbitrap MS platform, you can detect from parts-per-trillion up to high ppm without dilutions or multiple injections per sample.

There is a GC Orbitrap for…

  • Detecting the highest number of metabolites
  • Making novel discoveries to support research and journal publication
  • Accurately detecting compounds at trace and high concentrations

Biology is complex. To decipher these complexities, metabolomics analysis demands sophisticated analytical technologies and advanced software solutions. The Thermo Scientific Orbitrap GC-MS HRAM Metabolomics Library is the first commercially available high resolution accurate mass (HRAM) for electron ionization (EI) GC-MS. It contains more than 900 retention-indexed unique entries from more than 800 metabolites, providing a broad coverage of primary and secondary metabolites (including volatiles) in plants, animals, and microbes. When used in combination with powerful Orbitrap GC-MS technology and unique Thermo Scientific software data processing tools, the difficult challenge of metabolite identification in untargeted experiments is easier than ever before.

High confidence confirmation when you need to identify unknown compounds fast and with accuracy

What if you could understand your samples better than ever before so your products could be better and safer than ever before? The sensitivity and high resolution of Orbitrap-based GC-MS systems and powerful yet easy-to-use software make this a reality.

There is a GC Orbitrap for…

  • Providing the right answer first time when an unknown contaminant is suspected
  • Flexible inlet options including direct analysis probes
  • Fast change of column and source configuration through vacuum probe interlock

Whether you need to ensure final products being shipped meet quality control standards, develop new products, or identify a suspect contaminant, an Orbitrap-based GC-MS system will give you a comprehensive profile of your sample. The unrivalled combination of high-resolution gas chromatography separations and highly sensitive HRAM acquisitions combined with intelligent identification software will help unlock answers to questions about the very nature of each sample you inject.

The flexibility to change quickly between EI and chemical ionization (CI) will provide further information and/or confirmations of compounds detected. Positive chemical ionization (PCI) can be used to yield molecular ions. These ions can be measured directly in the Orbitrap GC-MS system or after fragmentation in the HCD for further HRAM investigation into the compound structure.

Workflow for the Exactive GC Orbitrap GC-MS system for non-targeted screening of e-liquids.
Workflow for the Exactive GC Orbitrap GC-MS system for non-targeted screening of e-liquids.

Discover and identify what’s important

What if you could measure known impurities in your samples while simultaneously identifying new ones that could render your products unsafe? And what if you could do that in a single run? You can with the unparalleled mass accuracy and dynamic detection range of an HRAM Orbitrap GC-MS system.

There is a GC Orbitrap for…

  • Providing a comprehensive profile of your sample
  • Structural elucidation of new and unknown compounds
  • Detailed extractable and leachable studies
Deconvoluted peak (left) acquired spectrum and library spectrum (right) with search index score of 905.
Deconvoluted peak (left) acquired spectrum and library spectrum (right) with search index score of 905.

The investigation of potentially toxic chemicals leaching from packaging products or the detection of pharmaceutical impurities is a challenging analysis with compounds present at both ultra-trace and high concentrations in a complex sample. The Q Exactive GC Orbitrap GC-MS/MS system with a dynamic range across six orders, sub-ppm mass accuracy, and the ability to use liquid, headspace, and direct analysis probes makes this analytical platform essential for pharmaceutical research and development.

The challenges of nitrosamine analysis in pharmaceuticals relate to sensitivity, selectivity, and compliance all in the light of obtaining reliable and timely results. High sensitivity must be achieved to fulfill the regulation requirements and selectivity is critical to avoid false positive non-compliant results. Pharmaceutical manufacturers also must assess their products for any condition that might potentially lead to nitrosamine formation. Although quantification of known compounds is essential, screening for unknown precursor chemicals that may contribute to the formation of nitrosamines is equally important. For this, Orbitrap GC-MS systems combine quantitative and qualitative strengths in a single platform, allowing for targeted and untargeted screening of impurities and a deeper characterization of samples.