Department of Mathematics

Pfizer Pharmaceutical

Proposed Project for the MSU Industrial Math Students

Developing a Numerical Metric for the Quality of a Chromatographic Separation

The objective of this research is to develop a metric for measuring the quality of a chromatographic separation. Currently, separation quality is determined by visual observation of how well the peaks are separated from each. During method development, the chromatographer would make changes to the separation variables and visually observe the effect on the separation. A metric would obviate the need for visual inspection of effect of the variable changes on the separation. Instead, a numerical output would indicate the best chromatogram. Such a metric would be useful when method development is automated where variables are updated automatically and various chromatograms are generated from which the best is selected.

First a software program to simulate chromatographic peaks with various separation characteristics such as retention time, peak tailing and resolution will be developed. Then, a quality metric will be developed to indicate the quality of the separation based on desired outcome or goal as set by the chromatographer. These goals could include maximum run time, minimum resolution, and maximum tailing.