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Practical GC Method Development practical course
2 Day Course | GC Level 3

Supplemented by a host of real world separation examples, tutorial and practical exercises to aid understanding, this course includes all the essential aspects of GC method development. More experienced chromatographers can use this course to cut method development lead times drastically, armed with a logical approach and a wealth of new knowledge on how to make the right decision during each aspect of development.

  • We limit numbers to 6 per course so that each delegate gets the opportunity to ask questions and fully participate in practical exercises
  • When delivered on-site we can design the course material to suit your specific training needs
  • Customisable written assessments are available if required

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on site Practical GC Method Development
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download course pdfThis two day course provides a step-by step approach to method development for GC. Column dimensions, phase type, inlet type and operating conditions, detector settings and optimisation along with sample preparation regimes are all crucial and often baffling choices available to the chromatographer developing methods for GC analysis.

This course takes a logical and progressive approach to the subject and discusses the important ‘make or break’ choices. Practical exercises illustrate the effect of different inlet conditions, oven temperature programme, stationary phase types and detection settings on real samples.

Who is this course for

This course is designed for the more experienced chromatographer. Attendance to the Fundamental GC and GC Troubleshooting and Maintenance training courses is not compulsory, but can be advantageous.

Previous knowledge

Delegates should have a good knowledge of chromatography and experience as GC users. Some experience in method development is also recommended. A good grounding in chemistry will be beneficial.

What you will learn

  • Setting method development objectives
  • Sample preparation
  • Inlet and flow rate parameters
  • Choosing a column and temperature program
  • Optimisation strategies


  • Establishing method objectives
  • Literature searching
  • What is known?
  • What needs to be known?

Choosing a Column & Temperature

  • Choosing the correct phase
  • Effects of column geometry
  • Solute-stationary phase interactions
  • Isothermal vs. Gradient operation
  • Theory and development of temperature gradients

Sample Preparation

  • Sample clean up
  • Analyte extraction
  • Solvent selection
  • Optimising for sample type/application

Optimisation Strategies

  • Measuring and optimising:
    Capacity factor, Efficiency, Resolution, Selectivity
  • Resolution equation
  • Developing effective methods
  • Example method development

Inlet, and Flow Rate Parameters

  • The effect of split ratio on peak shape and quantitative accuracy
  • Investigating oven initial temperature
  • Conversion into a splitless method
  • Optimising purge-on time
  • Carrier gas choice and flow rate optimisation (van Deemter & Golay treatment)

Putting it all together!

  • Developing a method for the separation of a complex mixture of compounds from scratch

Training Calendar

Click on a title below to download a detailed course description or click a date and book your course.

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Isothermal and Gradient Temperature GC

In Isothermal GC, the temperature of the GC oven (and hence the column) remains constant during the course of the analysis. This method of analysis is powerful when dealing with groups of compounds whose boiling point does not differ significantly and whose retention characteristics are similar. Where analyte retention characteristics differ – problems can be encountered with long retention times, poor peak shape and poor sensitivity for later eluting peaks; it may also be difficult to achieve a satisfactory separation for early eluting peaks where k<2. In isothermal analysis the retention of peaks in a homologous series increase according to a logarithmic scale – as shown opposite.

In temperature programmed GC, the oven starts at a low temperature to assist with the separation of early eluting peaks, is then ramped and usually held for a specified time at an upper temperature. This allows the analytes to elute within a reasonable timeframe and to be sure that all analytes have eluted from the column. In temperature programmed GC, analytes of a homologous series will elute according to a linear scale – as shown opposite.

A useful benefit of gradient temperature programmed GC is that all peaks elute with approximately the same width. Later eluting peaks therefore do not suffer from dispersion as in isothermal GC and as they are ‘sharper’, the inherent sensitivity of the method (measured via ‘signal to noise ratio’), increases for later eluting analytes.


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