Preliminary study on suitability of ionic liquids as potential passive-sampling media of polyaromatic-hydrocarbon (PAH) analyses in water
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Recently, ionic liquids (ILs) have been regarded as an attractive water-immiscible phase in liquid–liquid extraction. Because ILs have a wide range of polarity irrespective of their miscibility with water, the possibility of using them as an effective extraction phase for a broad range of contaminants means they are starting to be of particular interest. In this study we investigated a wide variety of ionic liquids, which are known to be hydrolytically stable and of a hydrophobic character, for their potential suitability as passive-sampling media for monitoring selected polyaromatic hydrocarbons. Preliminary research in this field has indicated very promising results using these novel extraction media. Because there is an enormous number of possible cation–anion combinations offering tuneable properties of ionic liquids with the potential for effective passive extraction, we hope this paper will encourage the scientific community to undertake further studies verifying the undoubted usefulness of these alternative solvents as passive samplers for many other groups of analytes. Additionally, because of the unusual solubility properties that have already been proved for ILs, it is very probable that it would soon be possible to deliver a very effective system able to extract analytes differing widely in polarity.
KeywordsIonic liquids Passive sampling Water analysis PAH
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