ASTM D6159 - 97(2012)

    Standard Test Method for Determination of Hydrocarbon Impurities in Ethylene by Gas Chromatography

    Active Standard ASTM D6159 | Developed by Subcommittee: D02.D0.02

    Book of Standards Volume: 05.03


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    Significance and Use

    4.1 High-purity ethylene is required as a feedstock for some manufacturing processes and the presence of trace amounts of certain hydrocarbon impurities can have deleterious effects. This test method is suitable for setting specifications, for use as an internal quality control tool, and for use in development or research work.

    4.2 This test method does not detect such impurities as H2O, CO, CO2, and alcohols that may be present in the sample. Hydrocarbons higher than n-decane cannot be analyzed by this test method, if present in the sample. Test Method D2504 addresses the analysis of noncondensable gases and Test Method D2505 addresses the analysis of CO2. Guide D5234 describes all potential impurities present in ethylene. These standards should be consulted when determining the total concentration of impurities in ethylene.

    1. Scope

    1.1 This test method covers the determination of methane, ethane, propane, propene, acetylene, iso-butane, propadiene, butane, trans-2-butene, butene-1, isobutene, cis-2-butene, methyl acetylene and 1,3-butadiene in high-purity ethylene. The purity of the ethylene can be calculated by subtracting the total percentage of all impurities from 100.00 %. Since this test method does not determine all possible impurities such as CO, CO2, H2O, alcohols, nitrogen oxides, and carbonyl sulfide, as well as hydrocarbons higher than decane, additional tests may be necessary to fully characterize the ethylene sample.

    1.2 Data are reported in this test method as ppmV (parts per million by volume). This test method was evaluated in an interlaboratory cooperative study in the concentration range of 4 to 340 ppmV (2 to 204 mg/kg). The participants in the interlaboratory cooperative study reported the data in non-SI units. Wherever possible, SI units are included.

    1.3 This standard dose 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

    D2504 Test Method for Noncondensable Gases in C2 and Lighter Hydrocarbon Products by Gas Chromatography

    D2505 Test Method for Ethylene, Other Hydrocarbons, and Carbon Dioxide in High-Purity Ethylene by Gas Chromatography

    D5234 Guide for Analysis of Ethylene Product


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 71.040.50 (Physicochemical methods of analysis)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code


    DOI: 10.1520/D6159-97R12

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