Glass Expansion Announces a Solution to ICP-MS Cone Degradation

August 2, 2012: Glass Expansion has introduced a line of new products designed to extend the lifetime of ICP-MS interface cones. Nickel and Platinum interface cones for ICP-MS suffer harsh conditions; salts and acids at high temperatures of the plasma. One of the best ways to clean cones is by soaking them in dilute acid. Recently, however, Glass Expansion engineers noticed customer complaints on a popular list server for the ICP community. One post stated, "We noticed that the threads of the Copper based, Pt skimmer cones would wear out long before the Pt insert." Another post echoed the sentiment, "We tend to clean the cones in dilute acid and judge they are clean when they have a salmon pink "new penny" appearance.

It is in this condition that the copper cone is likely to cold weld to the copper threaded insert in the interface assembly, and to the flat thermal transfer area outside the thread." To solve this problem, the engineers designed what are now known as ConeGuard™ thread protectors. The ConeGuard protectors are simply screwed onto the thread of the cone prior to the acid cleaning process. This protects the thread from acid degradation. Once the cones are clean, they are thoroughly rinsed in deionized water and the ConeGuard is removed. The clean cone can then be re-installed with confidence and the ConeGuard can be re-used many times.

Glass Expansion has been developing innovations for the ICP community for 30 years. The company specializes in consumables and accessories for ICP optical and ICP mass spectrometers. Products include nebulizers, torches, spray chambers, and interface cones as well as accessories such as the Niagara Plus and Assist Enhanced Productivity systems, the TruFlo Sample Uptake Monitor, and the Capricorn Argon Humidifier. For more information please visit

Worldwide Headquarters
Glass Expansion, Pty. Ltd.
15 Batman St.
West Melbourne, Vic. 3003
Tel. +61 3 9320 1111
[email protected]