Comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography analysis of high-ethanol containing motor fuels
Journal of Separation Science
A comprehensive 2-D GC (GC x GC) instrument equipped with a flow-switching modulator was used to determine the concentration of ethanol and eight other alcohols in a retail pump sample of E85 fuel. E85 is a mixture of ethanol and gasoline where the ethanol concentration can range from 70 to 85 vol%. The increased peak capacity and selectivity generated by GC x GC analysis allowed the alcohols to be fully resolved from the gasoline hydrocarbons. GC x GC analysis was compared to the performance obtained with the standard analytical method for determining ethanol in fuel ethanol (ASTM D5501) and the standard method for determining oxygenate concentrations in gasoline (ASTM D4815). The GC x GC analysis required 14 min while the combined ASTM D5501 and ASTM D4815 analyses required more than 60 min. The ethanol concentration obtained by GC x GC was in excellent agreement with the value obtained by the D5501 method. Poorer agreement was observed between the GC x GC and D4815 concentrations for the other alcohols present in E85. In all cases, the differences could be attributed to deficiencies in the D4815 method that led to coelutions between the alcohols and gasoline hydrocarbons.
Seeley, John V.; Libby, Elise M.; Seeley, Stacy K.; and McCurry, James D., "Comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography analysis of high-ethanol containing motor fuels" (2008). Chemistry & Biochemistry Publications. 85.