DART-MS: A New Analytical Technique for Forensic Paint Analysis.

08:00 EDT 3rd May 2018 | BioPortfolio

Summary of "DART-MS: A New Analytical Technique for Forensic Paint Analysis."

Automotive paint evidence is one of the most significant forms of evidence obtained in automotive related incidents. Therefore, the analysis of automotive paint evidence is imperative in forensic casework. Most analytical schemes for automotive paint characterization involve optical microscopy, followed by infrared spectroscopy and pyrolysis-gas chromatography mass spectrometry (py-GCMS) if required. The main drawback with py-GCMS aside from its destructive nature, is that this technique is relatively time intensive in comparison to other techniques. Direct analysis in real time-time of flight mass spectrometry (DART-TOFMS) may provide an alternative to py-GCMS, as the rapidity of analysis and minimal sample preparation affords a significant advantage. In this study, automotive clear coats from four vehicles were characterized by DART-TOFMS and a standard py-GCMS protocol. Principal component analysis was utilized to interpret the resultant data and suggested the two techniques provided analogous sample discrimination. Moreover, in some instances DART-TOFMS was able to identify components not observed by py-GCMS and vice versa, which indicates that the two techniques may provide complimentary information. Additionally, a thermal desorption/pyrolysis DART-TOFMS methodology was also evaluated to characterize the intact paint chips from the vehicles, in order to ascertain if the linear temperature gradient provided additional discriminatory information. All the paint samples were able to be discriminated based on the distinctive thermal desorption plots afforded from this technique, which may also be utilized for sample discrimination. Based on the results, DART-TOFMS may provide an additional tool to the forensic paint examiner.


Journal Details

This article was published in the following journal.

Name: Analytical chemistry
ISSN: 1520-6882


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