Multianion analysis, applications of ion chromatography
Ion chromatography as originally developed by Small and co-workers in 1975 provided a method for the separation and determination of inorganic anions and cations . This original method used two columns attached in series packed with ion exchange resins to separate the ions of interest and suppress the conductance of the eluant, leaving only the species of interest as the major conducting species in the solution. Once the ions were separated and the eluant suppressed, the solution entered a conductivity cell where the species of interest were detected. Since its introduction, ion chromatography has advanced considerably and the technique is now routinely used for the analysis of organic and inorganic anions and cations and substances, including organic acids and amines, carbohydrates and alcohols. Ion chromatography is not restricted to the separate analysis of only anions or cations. With the proper selection of eluant and separation columns, the technique can be used for the simultaneous analysis of both anions and cations.