Nanoflow liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry is used for qualitative and quantitative proteomics studies due to its high sensitivity. However, traditional nanoflow operation can be unreliable, and small imperfections when making connections between the tubing, column, high-voltage electrode, and emitter can result in irreproducible results.
Thermo Fisher Scientific’s EASY-Spray nano-electrospray ion source, a 2013 R&D 100 Awards winner, addresses this through the use of specifically designed devices in which the separation column, heater, high-voltage electrode, and emitter are integrated in a ready-made assembly. The columns feature nanoViper fingertight connections that eliminate the assembly of PEEK sleeve connections and are capable of withstanding pressures up to 1,000 bar. Spray optimization is straightforward with a simple adjustment knob to position the column within the source.
More than just providing simple connectivity, the integrated nature of the columns also provides uncompromised performance. The virtual elimination of dead volumes in the columns increases the efficiency and resolution, producing ultra-sharp peaks. The columns support the full pressure range of UHPLC methods, allowing for the use of smaller particle sizes and long columns, for more peptide identifications and higher throughput. The incorporation of on-column temperature control provides reliable and robust performance, including outstanding column-to-column reproducibility.