Synthesis and analysis of covalently cationized polystyrenes using liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry
In the present study, three narrow polydispersed (PD < 1.2) polystyrenes with number-average molar mass ranging from (2 to 20) ku were synthesized and subsequently modified using the covalent cationization method. We have demonstrated that the covalent cationization method can be used as a polymer ionization method over a broad selection of molar mass ranges. The covalent cationization method yielded stronger and cleaner MALDI signals under milder laser conditions than samples analyzed using the traditional ionization method. Column chromatography appears to be a successful route to the purification of synthetic polymers. Non-polar material can be separated from polar contaminates using a non-polar solvent. Molecular weight separation also seems possible. This information lays the groundwork for large-scale separation by end groups and molecular weight, which could be applicable to the formulation of blends by having pure starting materials and to synthesis by purification before the next step.