Search Research Equipment & Facilities

GC-Triple Quadrupole Mass Spectrometer (GC-MS/MS)


This platform is dedicated to the highly sensitive, quantitative, and targeted analysis of small molecules The standard set-up is used to analyse non-volatile compounds (mostly primary metabolites). The system is equipped with a sample preparation robot that is capable of automated online TMS derivatisation procedure especially suited for non-volatile compounds including amino acids, organic acids, mono- and disaccharides.

The analyses is done by a technique called multi reaction monitoring (MRM), where only specific target mass ions are selected by the first quadrupole and subsequently fragmented by the second quadrupole, to obtain a set of “daughter” mass ions. These “daughter” mass ions are highly specific for a particular analyte of interest. The third quadrupole is then used as a scanning device or mass filter. This allows a very sensitive detection of analytes even in complex sample matrices with a high dynamic range. 
Next to the MRM analysis of target compounds the system can be run in full scan mode, simultaneously enabling the untargeted analysis of target and non-target compounds, including spectral matching of unknowns with mass spectral libraries (e.g., NIST 14).

Technical Details

The system comprises a Thermo Scientific GC-MS/MS consisting of a Trace 1300 GC with a PTV injection unit. The GC is equipped with a Deans heart cutting module to selectively remove unwanted analytes from the chromatogram. The GC is connected to a TSQ8000 Duo triple quadrupole mass spectrometer from Thermo Scientific Instruments. At the forefront a Thermo TriPlus RSH autosampling robot is installed.

Further Specifications

Trace GC 1300

  • PTV injector programmable with max. 15 °C/sec up to 450 °C
  • Deans heartcut module
  • Ready for one extra injection or detection system


  • ExtractaBrite electron impact ion source cassette
  • Mass range: 1.2-1100amu
  • Scanning speed: up to 20,000amu/s
  • Dynamic range: up to 7 orders of magnitude
  • Simultaneous multimode acquisition (SIM, SCAN, SRM)
  • Timed SRM function for efficient multi-compound analysis

TriPlus RSH injection robot

  • Heated agitator for 6 samples
  • Custom made sample tray for up to 220 samples
  • Automatic syringe exchange system
  • Automated online MeOX/TMS derivatisation procedure


  • Targeted analysis of primary plant metabolites with relation to stress, resistance, crop quality, adaptation, etc.
  • Untargeted metabolomics analysis with relation to e.g., plant-environment interactions, disease biomarkers, biosynthetic and signalling route elucidation, etc.

Complementary Techniques

We also offer platforms for GC-MS volatile and LC-MS non-volatile analyses which are fully complementary to this TSQ approach.

Contact Roland Mumm




Plant Sciences Group



Last edited by Oscar de Vos on 2020-10-07