Polyelectrolytes as new matrices for secondary ion mass spectrometry
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Significant enhancements in ion yields in time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry (TOF-SIMS) are observed when water-soluble analytes are mixed with a polyelectrolyte, e.g., poly(diallyldimethylammonium chloride) or poly(sodium 4-styrenesulfonate), and then deposited in the layer-by-layer method on a surface. This previously unobserved effect is demonstrated for 5-chloro-8-methoxyquinoline appended diaza-18-crown-6, 5-(2-aminoethoxy)methyl-5-chloro-8-methoxyquinoline appended diaza-18-crown-6, acridine, 9-anthracenecarboxylic acid, and ferrocenecarboxylic acid. By optical ellipsometry film thicknesses range from ca. 5–20 Å. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy shows significantly less analyte in the polyelectrolyte-analyte films than in the neat analytes. However, TOF-SIMS generally shows significant enhancements in ion yields from the polyelectrolyte films compared with either the neat compounds or the compounds solubilized with acid or base and then dried on a surface. These significant enhancements in ion yields also appear to extend to analyte fragments and cationized molecular species. Some enhancement is also observed for dried droplets of analytes mixed with a polyelectrolyte on surfaces.
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