Graduation Year


Document Type






Degree Granting Department


Major Professor

Abdul Malik, Ph. D.

Committee Member

Xiao Li, Ph. D.

Committee Member

Jianfeng Cai, Ph. D.

Committee Member

Rudiger Schlaf, Ph. D.


allergens, chromia, column, extraction, hybrid, separation


The first chapter of this thesis presents an introduction to sol-gel methodology whose usefulness as a synthetic route will be demonstrated with two applications in chromatography. The first application involves the fabrication of a capillary micro-extraction (CME) device by coating a phenyl functionalized extracting phase on the inner surface of a fused silica capillary for analyte pre-concentration. The device was coupled on-line to a RP-HPLC system and practicality was demonstrated using allergens as target analytes. The allergens chosen as model analytes are typically found in fragrance products and food. Most of the 26 fragrance allergens that are monitored by various government authorities have a phenyl organic moiety (a strong chromophore), thus making them appropriate probes for exploring the extraction efficiency of the coating using a UV detector. The CME device showed ppt level limit of detection which makes it suitable for trace analyses of allergens and similar compounds in a variety of matrices.

The second application explores the feasibility of using sol-gel derived chromia-based stationary phase in gas chromatographic columns. The organic moiety of the stationary phase was derived from Ucon 75-H-90,000 while the inorganic backbone was prepared using chromium(III) dichloride hydroxide - methacrylic acid - aqua complex, 40% in isopropanol/acetone . Usefulness of prepared chromia-based GC stationary phase was examined for petrochemical application. Promising results were obtained using aliphatic-aromatics, polyaromatic hydrocarbons, BTEX test mixture, cycloalkanes, branched alkanes and akylbenzenes. The column was able to perform without degradation despite being rinsed multiples times sequentially with the following solvents: dichloromethane, methanol, water and finally methanol again. Maximum theoretical plate number calculated is around 2,400 plates/m. The plate number clearly needs improvement but is a promising result for the newly explored chromia-based stationary phase. The maximum programmable temperature is 250oC which is comparable with similar commercially available polar stationary phases.

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