Launch of the intercomparison of instruments campaign – Project EUROCHAMP 2020


The intercomparison of instruments campaign (PTR-ToF-MS*) planned from 6th to 25th May 2019 as part of the EUROCHAMP 2020 European project has started. The project teams are mobilized around the HELIOS atmospheric simulation chamber of the PRAT platform at the ICMN laboratory (CNRS) in Orléans.

The PTR-MS technique has become widespread in the atmospheric community, including the chamber community, since it allows simultaneous low volume sampling, real-time analysis, and extremely low detection limits for a wide spectrum of VOCs and inorganic gases. Nevertheless, PTR-MS remains a challenging technique where the experience of users is central to guarantee high performance. Transfer of knowledge and best practices (e.g. signal normalization procedure, interferences, ionization selection, instrument settings, sampling line (material, heated or not, with or without filters)) are still required to generate reliable and traceable results.

Therefore, the intercomparison campaign aims at

  • determining advantages/drawbacks of different instrument type and practices
  • but also at characterizing reliability and uncertainties, and finally at developing recommendations about best practices


During this campaign, PTR-MS instruments will be tested in various simulated environments (e.g. anthropogenic vs biogenic) and conditions (e.g. high humidity vs low humidity).

 On this occasion, the PRAT platform acquired a new instrument thanks to the ERDF funding from the PIVOTS program in order to complete its analysis capabilities in light hydrocarbons. This is the AirmoVOC (Chromatotec) for online analysis of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from C2 to C16, halogenated compounds, PAMS and PAHS.






Learn more about the EUROCHAMP-2020 project and its objectives with this animation video :

 “EUROCHAMP 2020 – Better understanding the formation of air pollution and its effects on human health”


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*Proton-Transfer Reaction – Time of Flight – mass spectrometry