Use of a mass spectrometer for direct respiratory gas sampling from the hyperbaric chamber

R. Arieli, Y. Daskalovic, M. Eynan, Y. Arieli, O. Ertracht, A. Shupak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: When conducting respiratory gas measurements during hyperbaric chamber research, it is preferable to carry out gas concentration analysis by mass spectrometry. Gas samples for the mass spectrometer are normally taken from a bypass flow exiting the high pressure chamber to the ambient atmosphere. Under these conditions, mixing in the sampling line smoothes the concentration profile, and much of the advantage of low sampling flow is lost. We propose to use a direct sampling method by mass spectrometer that overcomes these deficiencies. Methods: In the present study, the original high resistance capillary of a QP 9000 mass spectrometer was inserted through the wall of a hyperbaric chamber. Series A: Air and pure nitrogen flowed alternately (1 s each) via the sampling tip of the mass spectrometer. Series B: End expired CO2 from 15 immersed, professional divers exercising at 405 kPa was measured in a screening test for CO2 retention for nitrox diving. Results: There was no difference in the recorded rise time, fall time and plateau reached in the concentration of oxygen at pressures of 101, 202, 303, 405 and 506 kPa. The new sampling method functioned correctly throughout the full-scale experiment, and the recording of end tidal CO2 was more precise than in the conventional method. Conclusions: Direct sampling of gases from a hyperbaric chamber by the QP 9000 mass spectrometer has many advantages over sampling of the same gases once they are outside the chamber.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)799-804
Number of pages6
JournalAviation Space and Environmental Medicine
Issue number9
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes


  • End tidal CO
  • Gas concentration
  • High pressure
  • Response time

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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