What is the difference between bonded and non-bonded septa? 6 Vital Points
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What is the difference between bonded and non-bonded septa? 6 Vital Points

Aug. 24th, 2023
Septa plays an essential role in chromatography analyses, acting as a barrier between sample vials and analysis instruments to prevent sample contamination, evaporation and maintain integrity during analyses. Different types of septa exist - two commonly utilized categories being bonded and non-bonded septa which differ in terms of composition, properties and applications - so understanding their distinctions when selecting appropriate septa for analyses is crucial to ensure accurate results.

Composition and Structure


Bonded Septa:

Bonded septa are distinguished by a layer of silicone attached covalently to their surfaces, typically consisting of synthetic rubber. Chemical bonding technology chemically links this silicone layer directly to the septa material for maximum stability while decreasing any chance of silicone bleeding or coring that could compromise chromatographic results.

Non-Bonded Septa:


These non-bonded septa forgo the extra layer of silicone found in their counterparts, instead being constructed solely from septa material such as natural rubber or synthetic elastomers. While they tend to be more cost effective, they may present performance and consistency issues due to not having a bonded layer to act as support.

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Silicone Bleeding:

A key distinction between bonded and non-bonded septa is silicone bleeding, or release of silicone molecules from septa into samples that interferes with analyses. Chemically bonded silicone layers on bonded septa can reduce this issue significantly, making bonded septa more suitable when dealing with samples that may contain even trace amounts of contaminants.
 

Precision and Accuracy:

Bonded septa provide enhanced sample integrity by limiting sample evaporation or contamination due to their enhanced sealing capabilities, making them ideal for analyses that require high precision and accuracy such as quantitative determinations.

Application Compatibility:


Bonded septa are ideal for use in various analytical techniques, including gas chromatography (GC) and liquid chromatography (LC). Their versatility makes them particularly suitable for volatile or semivolatile compounds that could potentially leave samples unstable due to volatile constituents, helping maintain stability for analyses while also protecting analytes from loss.

Non-Bonded Septa in Routine Analyses:

Non-bonded septa are widely utilized in routine analyses where absolute precision is not an essential consideration, making these septa cost-effective options that serve well when analytical requirements are less stringent.

Compatibility with Sample Types:

Bonded septa are often preferred when handling difficult samples such as biological matrices, environmental samples or those containing aggressive chemical components. Their silicone layer provides extra protection and helps avoid interactions between samples and septa materials.

Cost and Routine Analyses:


Non-Bonded Septa are ideal for routine analyses that don't demand precision and cost efficiency, providing basic level sample protection while being cost effective. Unfortunately, they are not recommended when performing high sensitivity or low detection limit analyses.

Making an Appropriate Selection


In chromatography, success relies on minute details. A prime example is choosing between bonded or non-bonded septa as it shows how seemingly minor differences can have a big effect on results. Bonded septa offer superior sample protection and result integrity compared with non-bonded septa; making them invaluable in complex analyses while non-bonded septa provide practical workhorses in routine applications.

Understanding the unique requirements of each analysis, nature of samples and required degree of precision are essential in selecting an effective septum for analyses that deliver accurate, reliable and reproducible results across an array of applications.

Success in chromatography lies in its details. Understanding both bonded and non-bonded septa allows chromatographers to craft analyses with reliable, accurate, and reproducible results - like conducting an orchestra - using septa as an invaluable tool to extract secrets hidden deep within complex sample mixtures.

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