A combination of sorbent enrichment and ultrasound-assisted solvent extraction has been used to determine polychlorinated biphenyls in air. Analytes were sampled by pumping a known volume of air through a porous polymer (Tenax TA). The enriched adsorbent was transferred into a glass vial, and ultrasound-assisted extraction of the analytes was then performed in n-hexane. Quantification was carried out by using gas chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry. Breakthrough volume of the sampling step was studied, indicating that 10 m3 of air could be processed without losses of the most volatile compounds. Good recoveries (75–96%) were obtained, and limits of detection at the sub ng m–3 were achieved for all the analytes. The proposed method is very simple and fast, avoiding the use of large solvent volumes and time-consuming preconcentration steps.
Keywords Air analysis - Polychlorinated biphenyls - Gas chromatography–mass spectrometry - Ultrasound-assisted extraction