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Bulletin of the Korean Chemical Society (BKCS)

ISSN 0253-2964(Print)
ISSN 1229-5949(Online)
Volume 34, Number 12
BKCSDE 34(12)
December 20, 2013 

Mass Spectrometric Analysis of Eight Common Chemical Explosives Using Ion Trap Mass Spectrometer
Sehwan Park, Jihyeon Lee, Soo Gyeong Cho, Eun Mee Goh, Sungman Lee, Sung-Suk Koh, Jeongkwon Kim*
Explosives, Electrospray ionization, Ion trap
Eight representative explosives (ammonium perchlorate (AP), ammonium nitrate (AN), trinitrotoluene (TNT), 2,4-dinitrotoluene (DNT), cyclonite (RDX), cyclotetramethylenetetranitramine (HMX), pentaerythritol tetranitrate (PETN), and hexanitrostilbene (HNS)) were comprehensively analyzed with an ion trap mass spectrometer in negative ion mode using direct infusion electrospray ionization. MS/MS experiments were performed to generate fragment ions from the major parent ion of each explosive. Explosives in salt forms such as AP or AN provided cluster parent ions with their own anions. Explosives with an aromatic ring were observed as either [M–H]– for TNT and DNT or [M]•– for HNS, while explosives without an aromatic ring such as RDX, HMX, and PETN were detected as an adduct ion with a formate anion, i.e., [M+HCOO]–. These findings provide a guideline for the rapid and accurate detection of explosives once portable MS instruments become more readily available.
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