A review on the use of packed capillary columns in gas chromatography (GC) is presented. Several articles on the invention of packed capillary columns have been published, as well as on the progress and the development of this technology. Practical applications by this technique have also been studied, especially in the period from 1996 and onwards. A recently developed technique, solvating gas chromatography (SGC), which uses CO2 as the mobile phase combined with a high inlet pressure, has received specific focus.
The use of packed capillary columns in GC has also been evaluated. The technique used to pack these columns has been developed from a similar technology, which have been used for packing of columns, achieving very good separations, for both supercritical fluid chromatography (SFC) and high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). In the present work, the possibilities of using packed capillary columns in GC, without applying a higher inlet pressure than 5 bar, has been explored. A fused silica column with an inner diameter (i.d.) of 320 Ým was used, and porous, silica-based C18-particles with a particle size of 40 Ým serviced as the stationary phase. These particles provided separation of alkanes, phthalates and ethers, and also a separation of a single alcohol from several alkanes. They did not provide satisfactory results for analyzing alcoholic beverages, since the ethanol peak covered most of the impurities.