Methods and apparatus for ion mobility spectrometry and analyte detection and identification verification system are disclosed. The apparatus is configured to be used in an ion mobility spectrometer and includes a plurality of reactant reservoirs configured to contain a plurality of reactants which can be reacted with the sample to form adducts having varying ion mobilities. A carrier fluid, such as air or nitrogen, is used to carry the sample into the spectrometer. The plurality of reactants are configured to be selectively added to the carrier stream by use inlet and outlet manifolds in communication with the reagent reservoirs, the reservoirs being selectively isolatable by valves. The invention further includes a spectrometer having the reagent system described. In the method, a first reactant is used with the sample. Following a positive result, a second reactant is used to determine whether a predicted response occurs. The occurrence of the second predicted response tends to verify the existence of a component of interest within the sample. A third reactant can also be used to provide further verification of the existence of a component of interest. A library can be established of known responses of compounds of interest with various reactants and the results of a specific multi-reactant survey of a sample can be compared against the library to determine whether a component detected in the sample is likely to be a specific component of interest.
CONTRACTUAL ORIGIN OF THE INVENTION
This invention was made with United States Government support under Contract No. DE-AC07-94ID13223, now Contract No. DE-AC07-99ID13727 awarded by the United States Department of Energy. The United States Government has certain rights in the invention.