Front cover image for The synthesis and characterization of reversed phase stationary phases for high performance liquid chromatography

The synthesis and characterization of reversed phase stationary phases for high performance liquid chromatography

Reversed phase liquid chromatography (RPLC) is a widely used separation technique today. The stationary phase, composed of hydrocarbon moieties chemically bound to a silica support, is commonly prepared by refluxing the silica with a reactive silane in an appropriate solvent. Siloxane bonds, Si-O-Si, are formed. There are limitations to RPLC in that nonhomogeneous surface coverages, detrimental to efficient separations, result from the bonding process, and because the reaction is never complete due to steric restrictions. Also, silica is soluble at high pH values, and the Si-C bond binding the hydrocarbon to the silica is labile at low pH ranges. Thus, the usable pH range for silica stationary phases is 2.5 to 7.5, and often this range is too narrow to allow the separation of a mixture. The use of ultrasonic cavitation to catalyze silane bonding was investigated to dtermine whether the vigorous ultrasonic process would drive reagents into the surface pores and better distribute the hydrocar bonaceous reagent, thereby producing a more efficient stationary phase. Tandem reactions proved that ultrasonic bonding procedures are as effective as the refluxed, and that the chromatographic efficiency of the ultrasonic phases was comparable, if not superior, to the refluxed. Chromatographic tests also indicated the ultrasonic phases were comparable to commercially available phases. The reproducibility of the reactions and the effect of acoustic power and heat were also investigated. A second set of experiments investigated substitution of alumina for silica because the alumina crystalline structure remains intact over a pH range of 2 to 12. A trifunctional modification scheme generating a thick cross-linked hydrocarbon matte was used because the Al-0 bond is susceptible to hydrolysis, which strips the bound hydrocarbons, by polar RP solvents. Five aluminas were bonded and tested for chromatographic utility. Reaction conditions were optimized, and ultrasonic bonding was investigated. It was found that alumina with a sufficiently active surface is modifiable, and that the modified surface is remarkably stable for use with acidic and basic buffers and in neutral, polar solvent mixtures. The chromatographic utility of alumina phases was demonstrated and compared with the silica results
Thesis, Dissertation, English, 1986
University of Florida