Comparing the performance of hyperbolic and circular rod quadrupole mass spectrometers with applied higher order auxiliary excitation

Gershman, D.J.; Block, B.P.; Rubin, Martin; Benna, M.; Mahaffy, P.R.; Zurbuchen, T.H. (2012). Comparing the performance of hyperbolic and circular rod quadrupole mass spectrometers with applied higher order auxiliary excitation. International journal of mass spectrometry, 319-320, pp. 17-24. Elsevier 10.1016/j.ijms.2012.03.008

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This work applies higher order auxiliary excitation techniques to two types of quadrupole mass spectrometers (QMSs): commercial systems and spaceborne instruments. The operational settings of a circular rod geometry commercial system and an engineering test-bed for a hyperbolic rod geometry spaceborne instrument were matched, with the relative performance of each sensor characterized with and without applied excitation using isotopic measurements of Kr+. Each instrument was operated at the limit of the test electronics to determine the effect of auxiliary excitation on extending instrument capabilities. For the circular rod sensor, with applied excitation, a doubling of the mass resolution at 1% of peak transmission resulted from the elimination of the low-mass side peak tail typical of such rod geometries. The mass peak stability and ion rejection efficiency were also increased by factors of 2 and 10, respectively, with voltage scan lines passing through the center of stability islands formed from auxiliary excitation. Auxiliary excitation also resulted in factors of 6 and 2 in peak stability and ion rejection efficiency, respectively, for the hyperbolic rod sensor. These results not only have significant implications for the use of circular rod quadrupoles with applied excitation as a suitable replacement for traditional hyperbolic rod sensors, but also for extending the capabilities of existing hyperbolic rod QMSs for the next generation of spaceborne instruments and low-mass commercial systems.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


08 Faculty of Science > Physics Institute > Space Research and Planetary Sciences

UniBE Contributor:

Rubin, Martin


500 Science > 520 Astronomy
600 Technology > 620 Engineering








Martin Rubin

Date Deposited:

06 May 2016 08:41

Last Modified:

06 May 2016 08:41

Publisher DOI:





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