A reversed-phase LC-MS method with quadrupole-time of flight (QTOF) detection has been developed for the determination of four dinitro- toluenesulfonic acids and two amino-nitro-toluenesulfonic acids in groundwater. The analytes were separated by HPLC with 0.1% (v/v) formic acid as mobile phase modifier compatible with mass spectrometric detection. QTOF-MS analysis with negative ion electrospray ionization afforded good selectivity and sensitivity for analysis of the dinitro- and amino-nitro-toluenesulfonic acids. Structure elucidation and confirmation were accomplished by tandem mass spectrometry. Characteristic ions resulting from the loss of NO, NO2, and SO 2 from the [M-H]- ions were detected. An intense fragment ion at m/z 80 representing the [SO3]- ion was detected for all dinitro- and amino-nitro-toluenesulfonic acids. Solid-phase extraction using a co-polymer cartridge was developed for preconcentration of the analytes from water. Good recovery (>85%) was achieved when 0.1% formic acid was added into the water samples before extraction. Method detection limits ranged from 10 to 76 ng L-1 for the targeted compounds when 10 mL water was analyzed. Groundwater samples collected from wells close to a former ammunition plant in Stadtallendorf, Germany, were analyzed for the dinitro- and amino-nitro-toluenesulfonic acids.
Scopus Subject Areas
- Analytical Chemistry
- Amino-nitro-toluenesulfonic acids
- Dinitro-toluenesulfonic acids
- Solid-phase extraction