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Size-exclusion chromatography



Andre Striegel


Over the past half-century, size-exclusion chromatography (SEC) has become the premier method by which to determine the molar mass (M) averages and the molar mass distribution (MMD) of natural and synthetic macromolecules. When coupled to a multiplicity of detection methods, SEC also has the ability to inform our knowledge of the physicochemical properties of polymers. This chapter provides an introduction and overview to the fundamental aspects of SEC, as appertain chromatographic retention, band broadening, and resolution. Also covered are the determination of "absolute" (i.e., calibrant-independent) M averages and MMDs by on-line coupling of SEC to viscometric and/or static light scattering detectors, and the role of SEC in two-dimensional macromolecular separations.
Liquid chromatography: Fundamentals and Instrumentation, 3rd edition
Publisher Info
Elsevier, Amsterdam,


Size-exclusion chromatography, fundamentals, historical background, retention, band broadening, resolution, multiple detection, light scattering, viscometry, 2D separations


Striegel, A. (2023), Size-exclusion chromatography, Liquid chromatography: Fundamentals and Instrumentation, 3rd edition, Elsevier, Amsterdam, , [online],, (Accessed May 20, 2024)


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Created April 20, 2023, Updated June 7, 2023