As G.E.F. Lundell once indicated, the goal of the analytical sciences is to provide the chemical analysis of things as they are; however, this concept is often ignored in the development, and especially in the use, of analytical techniques. The field of ambient desorption/ionization mass spectrometry seeks to reverse this trend by enabling direct, sensitive, and selective analysis of untreated samples. Because of this ability, significant interest has surrounded the field since its introduction in 2004. In fact, the response seems to follow a Hype Cycle model, in which we are currently at the peak of inflated expectations. To lessen the impact of negative hype (i.e. the trough of disillusionment), which could destroy the field, more effort must be expended on fundamentally understanding the processes involved in ambient mass-spectrometric analyses. Examples are cited here to illustrate the limitations of and fundamental research on plasma-based ambient desorption/ionization in an effort to evaluate the current state of the field.
You have access to this article
Please wait while we load your content...
Something went wrong. Try again?