The ability to adsorb wide range of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) present in low concentrations is critical to sampling of hydrocarbons. The plot below compares the performance of our VOCX-HYDRA - a porous carbon adsorbent based single bed trap (referred as "VOCX-HYDRA" in the plot below) with a commonly used porous polymer adsorbent based single bed trap (referred as "Polymer sorbent (competitor)" in the plots below). The test was done by an independent laboratory specializing in hydrocarbon sampling. Porous polymer based adsorbent are used most commonly in sampling of gases consisting hydrocarbons. They have a wide volatility range, are hydrophobic, and are considered in gas sampling applications in areas of high humidity. However, polymer adsorbents can decompose, releasing toluene, benzene, benzaldehyde, acetaphenone, benzophenone, other aldehydes, and ketones, when it is heated for desorption, resulting in a number of artifacts being observed in supposed blank samples.
Integrated peak area - polymer sorbent (competitor)
Integrated peak area - VOCX-HYDRA
Ratio - VOCX-HYDRA/Polymer sorbent (competitor)
Y-Carbon's VOCX-HYDRA was packed in a 1/4" x 3.5" stainless steel (Grade-316L) PerkinElmer ATD tube. The packed sorbent was kept in place by stainless steel mesh, silanized glass wool and G-Clip. The ability of the sorbents to trap the organic chemicals was determined by passing an air sample that was spiked with the list of C4-C10 hydrocarbons. The spiked air samples were prepared by filling a canister half full with ambient air, and then spiking in a known concentration of a standard containing the compounds of interest to get the desired final concentration of 100 ppb. The sorbent tube was connected to the canister and air was passed through the cartridge at a rate of 1000 ml/min for 5 minutes. The tubes were then connected to a concentrator and were thermally desorbed and cryo-focused on a trap then analyzed by gas chromatography/mass spectroscopy (GC/MS). The VOCX-HYDRA carbon packed traps were compared with porous polymer single bed trap obtained prepacked from our competitor.
Samples were analyzed on an HP 5890 Series II gas chromatograph (GC) and HP 5971 MSD quadruple mass spectrometer detector. The sample air that was loaded onto the TO-17 sorbent trap was thermally desorbed onto the cryogenic freezout trap with the flow of 50 ml/min. Subsequently, it was thermally desorbed at 250oC using an electric heater and was cryofocussed into the opening of a 0.32 mm internal diameter (ID) deactivated fused silica capillary column. The cryofocussed loop was then warmed and the compounds were injected onto a 60 meter, DB-5, 0.25 mm ID fused silica capillary column in the GC. The GC was temperature programmed from -10oC to 250oC at a ramp rate of 13oC/min. As the column was heated, the compounds elute off the column and entered the mass spectrometer. The MS was scanned from 45 to 300 AMU with a scan rate of 1 to 2 seconds for the full scan. The plot represent the ratio of integrated peak area of VOCX-HYDRA to Polymer sorbent (competitor).
Physical properties of samples
Polymer sorbent (competitor)
# of beds
Results and discussions
VOCX-HYDRA outperforms polymer sorbent (competitor) across a broad range of hydrocarbons VOCs. VOCX-HYDRA adsorbs from C4-C10 hydrocarbons in a fairly uniform fashion, while polymer sorbent (competitor) performance drops off below C7.
1. Detection of broad spectrum of hydrocarbons present in low concentration: VOCX-HYDRA can adsorb wide range of hydrocarbons as compared to polymeric sorbent of our competitor.
2. Ability to work in high moisture environment: Water is a ubiquitous atmospheric contaminant which adversely affects gas sampling; atmospheric moisture which binds to a sorbent used in gas sampling prevents the adsorption of the desired VOC's. In contrast to other sorbents, VOCX-HYDRA is highly hydrophobic while maintaining the ability to bind to majority of hydrocarbons.
3. Highly pure sorbent: VOCX-HYDRA is a highly pure carbonaceous sorbent with a purity of over 99.9%. VOCX-HYDRA has negligible sulfur content unlike sorbents from our competitors.
4. Ability to work at higher temperature: VOCX-HYDRA can be heated to higher temperatures (up to 400oC), speeding up desorption. High desorption temperature allows release of compounds that are strongly attached to the sorbent.
5. Easy packing of tubes: VOCX-HYDRA has high particle endurance (low friability). This makes the filling of tube "less messy" ensuring a long service life in applications where it is subjected to mechanical wear.
Our sorbents can be used for a variety of thermal desorption (TD) related applications. TD is a widely used technique for extracting and isolating VOCs from various sources. It is often used for air
monitoring (indoor, outdoor, workplace, automobile interior, breath, etc.) and is a valuable tool for the analysis of polymers, packaging materials, foods, flavors, cosmetics, tobacco, building materials, pharmaceuticals, and consumer products. Indeed, almost any sample containing VOCs can be analyzed using some variation of the TD technique. The TD market is divided into following applications:
(i) Process Control: Process control involves the monitoring of manufacturing processes to ensure quality control and consistency in manufacturing operations. For example, chemical detection can be used by pharmaceutical, food processing and petrochemical companies to monitor manufacturing processes and react when inconsistencies are identified.
(ii) Health and Safety: Health and safety detection systems are intended to protect personnel occupying industrial facilities from hazardous chemicals. There is a known deficiency with existing sensors in industrial environments with respect to the simultaneous detection of multiple gases and the detection and concurrent identification of specific substances.
(iii) Emissions Monitor - monitor the emission of harmful industrial gases into the atmosphere that may damage the environment; detection of toxic industrial compounds - test for the release of toxic compounds, monitor decontamination efforts and confirm effective remediation of the chemical agent.
(iv) Diagnostic Instrument - analysis of breath or bodily fluids for non-invasive diagnosis or monitoring of disease; treatment monitor - analysis of breath for non-invasive monitoring of treatment efficacy and progress; and anesthesia and respiratory monitor - detect exhaled anesthesia agents and other relevant indicators in the breath to minimize the response time of clinicians to vital signs.
(v) Homeland Security - The chemical detection market for homeland security has not slowed down despite a lull in terrorist activity. Chemical sensing, while showing the greatest potential and garnering much of the attention in homeland defense, has primarily been the domain of the military and first responders, leaving the general public and most government facilities unprotected. Rising concerns about chemical and biological terrorist attacks on military and civil targets have prompted the U.S. Government to authorize massive spending on test and evaluation (T&E), services, and procurement of chemical detection equipment. The Federal Government is the single largest spender on threat detection equipment, with departments such as the Department of Defense (DOD) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) installing detection systems in sensitive areas.
Need help determining which material best suits your application? Please give us a call at 215-788-2461 or email us at Sales@Y-Carbon.US. While companies using porous carbon can choose from hundreds of off-the-shelf commodity products, Y-Carbon offers a new option: carbons whose properties are rapidly tuned for a specific application. We are interested in partnering with end-users to develop carbons specifically tailored to meet their needs. Normally, when developing materials for a new application we will begin by thoroughly studying the underlying technology and the key materials properties required. Once we have an understanding of the materials properties required, we can provide small quantities of material for evaluation. Based on the results of your evaluation, we can provide additional samples to further optimize our materials for your application. For more information on customization and Y-Carbon's capabilities, please visit:
Important notice regarding this product
VOCx is a product of Y-Carbon, Inc. The statements, technical information and recommendations contained herein are believed to be accurate as of the date hereof. Since the conditions and methods of use of the product and of the information referred to herein are beyond our control, Y-Carbon, Inc. expressly disclaims any and all liability as to any results obtained or arising from any use of the product or reliance on such information; NO WARRANTY OF FITNESS FOR ANY PARTICULAR PURPOSE, WARRANTY OF MERCHANTABILITY OR ANY OTHER WARRANTY, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IS MADE CONCERNING THE GOODS DESCRIBED OR THE INFORMATION PROVIDED HEREIN. The information provided herein relates only to the specific product designated and may not be applicable when such product is used in combination with other materials or in any process. The user should thoroughly test any application before commercialization. Nothing contained herein constitutes a license to practice under any patent and it should not be construed as an inducement to infringe any patent and the user is advised to take appropriate steps to be sure that any proposed use of the product will not result in patent infringement. The information contained in this document is based on tests conducted by Y-Carbon, Inc. and data selected from the literature, but shall in no event be held to constitute or imply any warranty, undertaking, express or implied commitment from our part. Our formal specifications define the limit of our commitment. Y-Carbon, Inc. can accept no liability whatsoever with regard to the handling, processing or use of the product or products concerned which must in all cases be employed in accordance with all relevant laws and/or regulations in force in the country or countries concerned.