mass spectrometry

noun

Definition of mass spectrometry 

: an instrumental method for identifying the chemical constitution of a substance by means of the separation of gaseous ions according to their differing mass and charge

called also mass spectroscopy

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Other Words from mass spectrometry

mass spectrometric adjective
mass spectrometer noun

Examples of mass spectrometry in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

With the support of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, the researchers had been examining ancient Native American pipes for years, using a chemical analysis technique called mass spectrometry to look for traces of plant material left behind. Michael Price, Science | AAAS, "Americans have been lighting up for more than 3000 years, ancient pipe reveals," 15 June 2018 Using gas chromatography and mass spectrometry, the team discovered residue of oleic and linoleic acid, telltale signatures of olive oil. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "This 4,000-Year-Old Jar Contains Italy’s Oldest Olive Oil," 4 June 2018 Thanks to technological advancements, labs now use accelerated mass spectrometry, a technique that requires smaller sample sizes and provides more precise results than the earlier method, called radiometric dating. Lorraine Boissoneault, Smithsonian, "An 800-Year-Old Shipwreck Helps Archaeologists Piece Together Asia’s Maritime Trade," 17 May 2018 Niziolek and her colleagues decided to submit more samples from the collection for a more precise method of radiometric dating called accelerated mass spectrometry. Ashley Strickland, CNN, "Treasure trove reveals origins of 800-year-old shipwreck," 16 May 2018 The scientists used a portable, briefcase-size device that pulls air from the surface of the skin and collects VOCs in a filter for later laboratory analysis, using gas chromatography–mass spectrometry. Richard Conniff, Scientific American, "Is Malaria's Peculiar Odor Key to Its Conquest?," 14 May 2018 The world-class scientists in the room laughed at this, and justifiably so, as Culberson nerdily debated the finer points of mass spectrometry or magnetometry with them. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "The billion-dollar question: How does the Clipper mission get to Europa?," 16 Apr. 2018 The first element was an analysis of the nerve agent provided by mass spectrometry, a technique that sorts ions based on their mass-to-charge ratio. Ellen Barry And David E. Sanger, New York Times, "Poisoned Door Handle Hints at High-Level Plot to Kill Spy, U.K. Officials Say," 1 Apr. 2018 Rosetta sent back mass spectrometry data showing that glycine, the simplest amino acid, was present on the comet. Luba Ostashevsky, Ars Technica, "How did life begin? It’s Chemistry 101, but in space," 26 Feb. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'mass spectrometry.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of mass spectrometry

1926, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of mass spectrometry was in 1926

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More Definitions for mass spectrometry

mass spectrometry

noun

Medical Definition of mass spectrometry 

: an instrumental method for identifying the chemical constitution of a substance by means of the separation of gaseous ions according to their differing mass and charge

called also mass spectroscopy

Other Words from mass spectrometry

mass spectrometric adjective
mass spectrometrically adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on mass spectrometry

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about mass spectrometry

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