As analysts enquire further into the complexity of their samples, powerful separation techniques
become an important asset. The ability (or lack thereof) of conventional one-dimensional separations
such as liquid and gas chromatography to resolve complicated mixtures was described in detail
by Giddings and others in the 1980s. At this point the development of multidimensional separation
techniques began to accelerate. These techniques can offer up to an order of magnitude greater peak
capacity than conventional chromatographic methods. Today, multidimensional separation methods
are used widely throughout many fields in both industry and academia. This review focuses on comprehensive
multidimensional techniques in gas and liquid chromatography. Fundamental aspects of
the techniques, modulation technology and recent applications in fields that frequently use the technology will be discussed.
Multidimensional separation techniques are here to stay and will undoubtedly play increasingly important role in
the analysis of complex chemical samples for years to come.
Keywords: Comprehensive multidimensional separations, comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography, comprehensive
two-dimensional liquid chromatography, environmental, flavours and fragrances, instrumentation.
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