A systematic mass spectrometry study of an industrially prolific class of polyfluorinated compounds known as telomers was conducted. The study specifically focused upon polyfluorinated alcohols along with corresponding saturated and α,β-unsaturated fluoroacids. Within each class differing fluoroalkyl chain length homologues were investigated, using negative and positive chemical ionization mass spectrometry (NCI and PCI). In the case of the fluoroalcohols, NCI resulted in the production of more elaborate spectra than the other classes. Moreover, it showed the interesting production of HF2- and the complex of this species, along with F -, with the parent molecule. These complexes resulted in the formation of the novel H2F3- ion. Results show that there is significant intra-molecular hydrogen bonding that occurs for these compounds, which influences the molecules fragmentation. This bonding will also influence the fate and disposition through environmental processes (e.g., VP, kOH, KOW, KOA) which are affected by molecular geometry. Furthermore, there is an increased accumulation and persistence potential for the molecule as a function of the fluorocarbon chain length. We have shown that in conjunction with the use of mass spectroscopy the engertics of environmental processes for polyfluorinated materials can be established. © 2003 American Society for Mass Spectrometry.
Ellis, D. A., & Mabury, S. A. (2003). Chemical ionization pathways of polyfluorinated chemicals - A connection to environmental atmospheric processes. Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry, 14(10), 1177–1191. https://doi.org/10.1016/S1044-0305(03)00450-1