Direct Mass Spectrometry for In-situ Analysis, Environmental Forensics, and Geo-spatial Chemical Mapping

Date: March 24, 2021 4:00 pm (ET)


  • Erik Krogh
    Vancouver Island University
Erik Krogh

Erik Krogh, Ph.D., P.Chem.
Co-Director, Applied Environmental Research Laboratories
Department of Chemistry, Vancouver Island University, Nanaimo, B.C., Canada


Recent work in our group has involved the development and application of direct mass spectrometry techniques to measure trace organic compounds in complex heterogeneous samples. This presentation will review some recent applications including the use of a semi-permeable membrane immersion probe for analysis of naphthenic acids (NAs) associated with oil sands process waters as a means increase sample throughput and provide time-resolved information for in-situ process/reaction monitoring. Mobilizing direct mass spectrometry to the field provides spatially and temporally resolved chemical information. We report some recent work involving the operation of a proton transfer reaction time-of-flight mass spectrometer to measure atmospheric volatile organic compounds in a moving vehicle for ‘on-the-fly’ and ‘on-site’ measurements. This includes mapping chemical concentrations and discriminating air masses based on their chemical composition and source profiles. The resulting geo-spatial visualization of chemical data has been employed to map plumes, assess exposures, and ‘adaptively’ collect discrete samples for conventional analysis, when and where they are needed.


Dr. Krogh completed his undergraduate studies in at the University of Toronto with a specialization in Chemistry and general degree in Environmental Studies. He went on to obtain his Ph.D. at the University of Victoria, where he focused on structure-activity relationships in the photochemistry of organic molecules in aqueous media. He is currently a faculty member in the Department of Chemistry at Vancouver Island University and co-Director of the nationally funded Applied Environmental Research Laboratories. He teaches a number of Environmental Chemistry courses including those dealing with the fate and distribution of trace organic contaminants. He maintains an active group of undergraduate and graduate student researchers and collaborators. He has published over 50 papers in the areas of environmental and analytical chemistry. His current research interests include the development and application of real-time, on-line mass spectrometry to directly investigate environmental chemical processes in complex and reactive media.