Bench-top mass spectrometers are to be found interfaced with other
analytical instruments such as gas chromatographs and high-performance liquid chromatographs giving rise to the 'hyphenated
techniques', GC-MS and LC-MS, respectively.
In both techniques the separated compounds from the chromatograph are
sampled automatically and the mass spectrum of each compound is recorded.
Comparison of the mass spectra with a library in an 'on-board' database
permits identification of the components of the mixture.