Dispersion-convolution model for simulating peaks in a flow injection system

Su Cheng Pai*, Yee Hwong Lai, Ling Yun Chiao, Tiing Yu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


A dispersion-convolution model is proposed for simulating peak shapes in a single-line flow injection system. It is based on the assumption that an injected sample plug is expanded due to a "bulk" dispersion mechanism along the length coordinate, and that after traveling over a distance or a period of time, the sample zone will develop into a Gaussian-like distribution. This spatial pattern is further transformed to a temporal coordinate by a convolution process, and finally a temporal peak image is generated. The feasibility of the proposed model has been examined by experiments with various coil lengths, sample sizes and pumping rates. An empirical dispersion coefficient (D*) can be estimated by using the observed peak position, height and area (tp*, h* and At*) from a recorder. An empirical temporal shift (Φ*) can be further approximated by Φ* = D*/u2, which becomes an important parameter in the restoration of experimental peaks. Also, the dispersion coefficient can be expressed as a second-order polynomial function of the pumping rate Q, for which D*(Q) = δ0 + δ1Q + δ2Q2. The optimal dispersion occurs at a pumping rate of Qopt = sqrt(δ0 / δ2). This explains the interesting "Nike-swoosh" relationship between the peak height and pumping rate. The excellent coherence of theoretical and experimental peak shapes confirms that the temporal distortion effect is the dominating reason to explain the peak asymmetry in flow injection analysis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)109-120
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Chromatography A
Issue number1
StatePublished - 12 Jan 2007


  • Dispersion-convolution model
  • Flow injection analysis
  • Peak simulation

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