Text Box: W.C. Byrdwell and M. Holčapek

	In the past decade, many new technologies have been developed to provide
new tools for analytical chemists to use, while other relatively new technologies
are coming to maturity. Since both gas chromatography and conventional
high performance liquid chromatography were already mature fields, the new
developments have often focused on expanding the field of chromatography
by expanding the range of conditions (i.e., pressure, temperature, particle size,
column dimensions, etc.) that can routinely be used. Many of the conditions
used nowadays are considered quite extreme compared to traditional chromatographic techniques. Some of these extreme conditions are now possible
only because of improvements in fabrication technologies (e.g., for column
packing materials) and commercial instrument designs (e.g., allowing the use
of extremely high pressures in ultra high performance liquid chromatography).
Thus, techniques that were demonstrated only in principle as long as
decades ago have now come to commercial availability because of technological
advancements in instrument design, software development, and manufacturing
and production processes. Many techniques that were previously
demonstrated only as proofs of concept are now within reach of the typical
research or commercial laboratory.
	While these developments offer exciting possibilities to solve long-intractable
problems and to address extremely complex separations as never before
possible, they also present difficulties in determining which techniques offer
concrete benefits and which ones are merely ‘flashes in the pan’. A dizzying
array of specialty applications has appeared in the peer-reviewed literature,
which can create a degree of information overload, as today’s chemist grapples
with decisions as to which techniques are worthy of adoption (at the cost of
substantial capital investment) and which are merely interesting novelties.
There are, however, clear trends in the dramatically increasing number
of literature reports for some techniques, and these trends run in parallel
with the commercial availability of instruments, columns, and stationary
phases that manufacturers have determined have reached a critical threshold
of implementation justifying their mass production. Because it has become
apparent that some techniques are here to stay, this moment in the history of
chromatography represents an excellent time to assess the state of the art and
to provide a resource for analytical chemists in the decision making process,
and for students and professionals interested in learning more about these

Contact the authors:


Prof. Dr. Michal Holcapek

Dr. Wm. Craig Byrdwell

c/o AOCS Press

P.O. Box 17190

Urbana, IL 61803-7190


Phone: 217-359-2344

E-mail: sales@aocs.com

Web address:


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