A test run separating dimethyl maleate and dimethyl fumerate has been performed and shown in photos.
50mg of each compound (total mass 100mg), dissolved in a small amount mixture of hexane, acetone and dichloromethane was spotted onto the plate. The plate was eluted twice with hexane:acetone=15:1, giving a very good separation. While this is expected, this also indicated that depending on how far away each component band is on TLC, one can load material amounts of 100mg and more onto the plate since in the example the plates have not quite reached full capacity.
The preparative TLC method is an alternative to preparative HPLC. HPLC methods can be more expensive and when handled improperly, contamination can occur. Prep TLC is especially suitable for applications when there is relatively a small amount of sample, and purity requirements are
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