In my role as senior technical specialist at Biotage I am often asked about compound detection options. For most flash chromatography methods, UV is the default detection tool since a majority of compounds do absorb some UV light.
Diode array UV detectors provide chemists choices in wavelength selection, providing the ability to widen or narrow the wavelength range needed to detect specific compounds and enhance their sensitivity.
When diode array detectors fail to detect compounds, it is because the compounds have no chromophore, e.g. carbohydrates, low extinction coefficients, exist in really low concentrations, or any combination of these. In these situations, alternative detectors are quite beneficial. In this post I will discuss a couple of detector options for flash chromatography.