How to optimise column volume for best possible results

The best column performance is achieved when extra column volume is kept as low as possible. This is especially true when using short high efficiency columns. Learn how you avoid unwanted peak broadening and optimise resolution.


Extra column volume describes in an HPLC system the volume external to the column. Extra column volume contributes to the total peak volume and should be minimised in order to maximise the performance of the column to obtain the best performance the column is capable of.

Most new HPLC chromatographic systems have been optimised to enable the use of high efficiency SPP and Fused-Core columns such as HALO®. But many older autochromatographs are still in active use. Used with longer columns packed with larger particle phases, extra column volume in the injector and connecting tubing lines has less effect on resolution and peak width. When switching to shorter, high efficiency SPP columns, the extra column volume needs to be reduced to avoid peak broadening that can reduce resolution and the accuracy of the quantitative results. It can be said that the extra column volume should be less than half of the total peak volume to achieve 90% of the maximum resolution from a column.

This video explains what needs to be taken into consideration and how to adjust and influence column volume. Also learn more on the modification possibilities to achieve high efficiency results and baseline separations with a conventional HPLC system.

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