Having two different Supported Liquid Extraction (SLE) sorbent options can make it easier for you to get a product that works for your unique extractions.

By offering two supported liquid extraction sorbent types—synthetic (Novum™) and diatomaceous earth (Strata DE®)—we can provide customers with the ability to choose the right solution for their samples, solvents, and volumes.

By offering a full collection of sample preparation products, LC and GC columns, as well as a vast selection of accessories, we are able to provide for our customer’s every need. However, in a similar fashion to being in front of a food buffet, sometimes the more options available make it more difficult to choose. But options can be a good thing!  Once you understand what your analysis requires, it is easy to choose the best solution to achieve your goals. Let’s walk through the differences between the two SLE sorbents so we can fill your chromatography buffet plate.


The sorbent is the most obvious difference between the two SLE products. One is a synthetic sorbent, Novum, and the other is a natural diatomaceous earth sorbent, Strata DE.  So, what does this even mean?  Novum, our synthetic sorbent, was created to combat the short comings of traditional diatomaceous earth sorbents.  Novum is lab created and is therefore more reproducible.  We offer the unique ability over most other SLE providers to be able to manufacture this product to specifications, and we can troubleshoot the sorbent if any problems occur.

Alternatively, Strata DE, our diatomaceous earth sorbent, is a cost-effective alternative to other traditional SLE products on the market. Strata DE is a guaranteed* alternative to Biotage® ISOLUTE® SLE+ and Thermo Fisher® HyperSep™ SLE.  Both Novum and Strata DE have different capabilities, and while this isn’t enough to decide which sorbent will work best for your unique extractions—it’s a fantastic start.

Extraction Solvent

With extensive research and testing on both of our products, we understand that each extraction may require a different extraction solvent depending on the analyte(s) that you are working with.  Novum is optimized to work better with solvents such as Ethyl Acetate, while Strata DE works well with DCM or Heptane/Hexane.  These solvents are commonly used in liquid-liquid extractions (LLE) and can be directly transitioned to SLE, making the switch to SLE easy. If a new SLE method is being developed, a simple screen can be performed to determine the optimal sorbent type and extraction solvent.  Take a plate (or tube), load your sample—which has been diluted 1:1 with aqueous solvent into multiple wells (or tubes)—wait 5 minutes, test as many different extraction solvents and pH’s as you like, and finally compare your results.  This will ensure that you are choosing the right extraction solvent for your analytes.

Sample Volume

Strata DE is available in a large 60 cc tube, which has a 20mL capacity as well as a 12cc tube with a 2mL capacity, which are ideal formats for food or environmental applications.  Novum has many different tube options that are perfect for most extraction types, with the largest being 12cc (2mL capacity) and the smallest being 1cc (200µL capacity).  Both products are available in 96-well plate formats for small or limited sample volumes, which work best for high throughput laboratories that run multiple samples at once.  Most of these formats can be used on a liquid handler for automated extractions, which further saves time for labs running several samples a day.

While both Novum and Strata DE are Supported Liquid Extraction products that will remove matrix interferences and provide cleaner samples for injection into a LC-MS/MS, the chart below further breaks down the main differences between the two products Novum and Strata DE.

Supported Liquid Extraction

Choosing the best option for your work will depend on preference of sorbent type, extraction solvent, and format size or throughput capabilities necessary. If you have questions about which Supported Liquid Extraction sorbent is right for your method, reach out to our Technical Experts nearly 24/7 around the world.

*Guarantee Statement
If Phenomenex SLE products do not perform as well or better than your current SLE product, return the product with comparative data within 45 days for a FULL REFUND.

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