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Automated analytics of fatty acid methyl esters from oils and fats
Animal and plant fats play an essential role as components of our everyday diet. According to the EU food information regulation from December 2016 manufacturers are obligated to declare the fatty acid composition on their packagings. Thus, the importance of fatty acid determination is increasing.
For the analysis of fatty acid methyl esters (FAME) regarding their fatty acid composition there are various methods which Axel Semrau has automated. These for example are the methods DGF C-VI 10 and C-VI 11, SLMB 269.1 and AOCS Ce 2-66. The latter includes a methylation using boron trifluoride, a highly toxic chemical - an unpleasant step for every operator. A manual sample preparation needs to be performed reliably and cleanly to avoid the risk of carryovers and achieve a good reproducibility.
Axel Semrau therefore has developed an automated online sample preparation with subsequent gas chromatographic analytics. The CHRONECT Workstation FAME handles manually difficult steps and provides a fast sample preparation. Thus, the automation does not only increase reproducibility but also the sample throughput.
The FAME Workstation assumes all steps which are necessary for the transesterification, methylation of fatty acids, extraction and injection. An integrated centrifuge accelerates the phase separation. Depending on the chromatographic conditions, 27 - 40 samples may be processed within 24 hours. For the alternative sample preparation, for example the transesterification of short-chain fatty acids, the autosampler may be adjusted quickly and flexibly. Furthermore, various methods can be automated within one workbench.
Benefits of the application
The CHRONECT Workstation FAMEs consists of an accordingly equipped PAL RTC autosampler (CTC Analytics), a GC-FID system (Agilent 7890A) and a S/SL injector (SIM). The autosampler includes the following modules:
The entire system is controlled by the software platform CHRONOS. A flexible evaluation at the GC can be performed by either Clarity 6.2 or MassHunter.
Chromatogram of a fatty acid composition (C14 - C24)
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