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Screening of additives and other chemicals in polyurethanes by direct analysis in real time mass spectrometry (DART-MS)


Direct analysis in real time mass spectrometry (DART-MS) was used to characterize commercial polyurethane (PUR) samples without sample pretreatment. More than 50 substances, such as catalysts, stabilizers, antioxidants, flame retardants, plasticizers, chain extenders, chain terminators, polyols, solvents, degradation products and contaminants, a few of them presumably toxic, were detected and identified in 18 PUR items. The identification of 16 compounds was further confirmed by DART MS/MS experiments. Catalysts were the largest class of compounds detected in the PURs by DART-MS. In each of the 18 PUR samples, at least one catalyst residue was identified. In addition, DART-MS was able to detect the migration of hazardous chemicals from the PURs to other objects. The collision-induced dissociation (CID) properties of two PUR catalysts, such as the protonated bis[2-(dimethylamino)ethyl] ether (DMAEE) and the protonated 2,2-dimorpholinodiethylether (DMDEE), as well as those of two PUR antioxidants (Antioxidant 1135 and Antioxidant 1076), were explored.

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The work was supported by the GINOP-2.3.2-15-2016-00041 project. The project was co-financed by the European Union and the European Regional Development Fund. Furthermore, this paper was also supported by the János Bolyai Research Scholarship of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences and by the grant K-116465, and supported through the New National Excellence Program of the Ministry of Human Capacities, ÚNKP-16-3 (T. Nagy).

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Correspondence to Sándor Kéki.

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Kuki, Á., Nagy, L., Nagy, T. et al. Screening of additives and other chemicals in polyurethanes by direct analysis in real time mass spectrometry (DART-MS). Anal Bioanal Chem 409, 6149–6162 (2017).

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  • Polymers
  • Catalysts
  • Mass spectrometry