Direct Analysis of Textile Fabrics and Dyes Using IR Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption Electrospray Ionization (MALDESI) Mass Spectrometry
Analytical chemistry | 15 Dec 2012
KH Cochran, JA Barry, DC Muddiman and D Hinks
The forensic analysis of textile fibers uses a variety of techniques from microscopy to spectroscopy. One such technique that is often used to identify the dye(s) within the fiber is mass spectrometry. In the traditional direct infusion method, the dye must be extracted from the fabric and the dye components separated by chromatography prior to mass spectrometric analysis. Direct analysis of the dye from the fabric allows the omission of the lengthy sample preparation involved in extraction, thereby significantly reducing the overall analysis time. Herein, a direct analysis of dyed textile fabric was performed using the infrared matrix-assisted laser desorption electrospray ionization (IR-MALDESI) source for mass spectrometry (MS). In MALDESI, an IR laser with wavelength tuned to 2.94 µm is used to desorb the dye from the fabric sample with the aid of water as the matrix. The desorbed dye molecules are then post-ionized by electrospray ionization. A variety of dye classes were analyzed from various fabrics with little to no sample preparation allowing for the identification of the dye mass and in some cases the fiber polymer. Those dyes that were not detected using MALDESI were also not observed using the traditional method of direct infusion.
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