Malvern Panalytical

Optimizing GPC/SEC measurements by Combining High-Performance Columns and Powerful Advanced Detectors

Optimizing GPC/SEC measurements by Combining High-Performance Columns and Powerful Advanced Detectors

Malvern Panalytical

Gel Permeation Chromatography (GPC), also known as Size Exclusion Chromatography (SEC), is a very popular analytical tool for characterizing natural and synthetic polymers. Advanced GPC/SEC analysis using multi-detectors is increasingly being used to measure absolute molecular weight independent of column retention volume and to add other measurements such as those of intrinsic viscosity and hydrodynamic radius. With this information, scientists can accurately study how changes in molecular weight and structure affect polymer performance.

Advances in detector technology have enabled more accurate and information-rich measurements, but the quality of those measurements is still dependent on the quality of the separation, which itself remains dependent on the column. Good resolution depends on matching the column pore size to the sample of interest and an ideal separation requires no interaction between the sample and the column material. Additionally, in order to maximize light scattering signal-to-noise, columns should be stable over time and not shed any particulates, to which the light scattering detector will be very sensitive.

From the detector standpoint, inter-detector distances should be reduced to minimize peak dispersion. This webinar will discuss how high-quality columns and detectors both contribute to high quality GPC/SEC measurements. We will also discuss how the two interact with each other and show data to demonstrate some ideal measurements as well as showing some of the symptoms of poor measurements while discussing the possible causes.


  • Measurement type: Molecular weight
  • Date: 6 December 2016
  • Time: 10:30 - 11:30 (GMT-05:00) Eastern [US & Canada]
  • Event type: Webinar - Live
  • Language: English


Mark Pothecary studied biochemistry while an undergraduate at the University of Bath before moving to London to obtain his Masters and PhD at the academic lab in the William Harvey Research Institute, part of the Queen Mary University between 2002-2006. There he studied the biochemical effects of red wine polyphenols on the production of nitric oxide in blood vessels and the subsequent control of blood pressure. Following this he continued for another year in the same lab using chromatography to study the uptake of these same compounds into the blood, by extracting and measuring them. Mark joined Malvern in 2008 as a product technical specialist for the Zetasizer Nano and Viscotek products concentrating on bioscience SEC applications. In 2010, he took the role of Product Manager for Zetasizer and Viscotek products where he acts as the 'Voice of the Customer' for new products and on quality issues and recently moved to our Houston office to engage more closely with product developments there.

Leah Block was born in Marlboro, NJ and is currently the Technical Manager at Shodex, Showa Denko America, Inc. Showa Denko America, Inc. is 100% subsidiary of Showa Denko K.K. with headquarters in Tokyo, Japan. As part of Shodex, she provide sales and technical services for HPLC columns produced by the Showa Denko Group. Leah has was previously the first ACS nongovernmental representative to attend the United Nations 16th Conference of Parties (COP-16) in Cancun, Mexico. COP-16 is an annual meeting where national leaders work towards accomplishing an international agreement to make strides to restrain climate change. She later graduated with a PhD at The University of Alabama. During her graduate career she focused on the dissolution and manipulations of biopolymers to create multiple supports for transdermal drug delivery. During this research she became well versed with size exclusion techniques.

More information

Who should attend?

  • GPC/SEC users looking to take their measurements to the next level
  • GPC/SEC users looking to understand how their measurement quality can be improved
  • Anyone looking to push the performance of their GPC/SEC system

Why attend?

  • To learn about GPC/SEC and understand how the best measurements require powerful detectors and a good separation through the columns
  • To learn about some of the symptoms of a non-ideal setup and how to improve it
  • To get tips as to how to improve your own GPC/SEC measurement by addressing any problems it may have

What will you learn?

  • The basic principles of GPC/SEC separation
  • The basic principles of advanced GPC/SEC detection
  • How the measurement quality depends on good separation and powerful detection
  • Symptoms of poor GPC/SEC performance and how to rectify them