ASTM D1481 - 12

    Standard Test Method for Density and Relative Density (Specific Gravity) of Viscous Materials by Lipkin Bicapillary Pycnometer

    Active Standard ASTM D1481 | Developed by Subcommittee: D02.04.0D

    Book of Standards Volume: 05.01


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    Significance and Use

    5.1 Density is a fundamental physical property that can be used in conjunction with other properties to characterize both the light and heavy fractions of petroleum and to access the quality of crude oils.

    5.2 Determination of the density or relative density of petroleum and its products is necessary for the conversion of measured volumes to volumes at the standard temperatures of 15°C.

    5.3 The determination of densities at the elevated temperatures of 40 and 100°C is particularly useful in providing the data needed for the conversion of kinematic viscosities in centistokes (mm2/s) to the corresponding dynamic viscosities in centipoises (mPa·s).

    1. Scope

    1.1 This test method covers the determination of the density of oils more viscous than 15 cSt at 20°C (mm2/s), and of viscous oils and melted waxes at elevated temperatures, but not at temperatures at which the sample would have a vapor pressure of 100 mm Hg (13 kPa) or above.

    Note 1To determine the densities of less viscous liquids at 20 or 25°C use Test Method D1217.

    1.2 This test method provides a calculation procedure for converting density to relative density (specific gravity).

    1.3 WARNING—Mercury has been designated by many regulatory agencies as a hazardous material that can cause central nervous system, kidney and liver damage. Mercury, or its vapor, may be hazardous to health and corrosive to materials. Caution should be taken when handling mercury and mercury containing products. See the applicable product Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) for details and EPA’s website—http://www.epa.gov/mercury/faq.htm—for additional information. Users should be aware that selling mercury and/or mercury containing products into your state or country may be prohibited by law.

    1.4 The values stated in SI units are to be regarded as standard. No other units of measurement are included in this standard.

    1.5 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.


    2. Referenced Documents (purchase separately) The documents listed below are referenced within the subject standard but are not provided as part of the standard.

    ASTM Standards

    D1217 Test Method for Density and Relative Density (Specific Gravity) of Liquids by Bingham Pycnometer

    D1250 Guide for Use of the Petroleum Measurement Tables

    D4052 Test Method for Density, Relative Density, and API Gravity of Liquids by Digital Density Meter


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 17.060 (Measurement of volume, mass, density, viscosity)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code 15101500(Petroleum and distillates); 41103316(Pycnometers )


    DOI: 10.1520/D1481-12

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