I am interested to separate a sample matrix via a method very similar to chromatography. The reason I am asking about this is because I am planning to integrate this method with my SERS application.

This is what I have in mind: enter image description here

  • A droplet of sample is placed at position X.
  • 50/50 Methanol/water is dropped at position Y.
  • The chromatography plate is outlined as red. It is made of silica gel.
  • This plate is placed flat on a table.


  • The solvent does not overflow to the sample drop area.
  • The solvent can only travel via the direction of the arrow
  • The solvent will dissolve the sample while it is travelling.

Will this actually work?

  • $\begingroup$ What does 'work' mean in this context? Are you asking if there will be a chromatographic separation? $\endgroup$ – Lighthart Apr 11 '16 at 21:05
  • 5
    $\begingroup$ Why not just do TLC, since that is pretty much what you have described the set-up for? $\endgroup$ – ringo Apr 11 '16 at 23:43
  • $\begingroup$ @ringo Because TLC requires evaporation chamber and a bunch of other stuff. I am building a special type of stripes that cost less than a dollar for my SERS application. $\endgroup$ – Sparrowcide Apr 12 '16 at 6:00
  • $\begingroup$ @Lighthart Yes. I am referring to sample separation $\endgroup$ – Sparrowcide Apr 12 '16 at 6:00
  • $\begingroup$ You can do TLC without a vapor chamber. The separation isn't as good. $\endgroup$ – Lighthart Apr 12 '16 at 15:21

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