Simple, affordable, and rapid methods for identifying the molecular weight (MW) distribution and macromolecular composition of polymeric materials are limited. Current tools require extensive solvent consumption, linear calibrations, and expensive consumables. A simple method for the determination of average MW (
Five homopolymer standards in the 1–7 kDa MW range were analyzed using direct‐injection ESI‐MS on a quadrupole/time‐of‐flight mass spectrometer. The samples investigated, viz. two poly(ethylene oxide) (PEO) and two poly(styrene sulfonic acid) (PSS) standards with narrow polydispersity and one poly(
The MW data derived for the PSS, PEO, and pAla standards agreed well with the corresponding reported
Overall, the free and easy‐to‐use UniDec CDC algorithm provides a simple, alternative method to measuring MW and DP for polymeric materials without high solvent consumption, expensive ionization sources, or calibration curves. Information about the masses of individual oligomers and the possibility to further characterize these oligomers using tandem mass spectrometry and/or ion mobility techniques constitutes additional benefits of this approach vis‐à‐vis traditional MW and PDI elucidation through SEC.