ASTM D6317 - 98(2009)

    Standard Test Method for Low Level Determination of Total Carbon, Inorganic Carbon and Organic Carbon in Water by Ultraviolet, Persulfate Oxidation, and Membrane Conductivity Detection

    Active Standard ASTM D6317 | Developed by Subcommittee: D19.03

    Book of Standards Volume: 11.01


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    ASTM D6317

    Significance and Use

    This test method is used for determination of the carbon content of water from a variety of natural, domestic, and industrial sources. In its most common form, this test method is used to measure organic carbon as a means of monitoring organic impurities in high purity process water used in industries such as nuclear power, pharmaceutical, and electronics.

    1. Scope

    1.1 This test method covers the determination of total carbon (TC), inorganic carbon (IC), and total organic carbon (TOC) in water in the range from 10 to 1000 μg/L of carbon. This method is for laboratory or grab sample applications and has been subjected to an interlaboratory study under the guidelines of D2777. Test Method D5997 can be used for on-line determinations. The test method utilizes persulfate or ultraviolet oxidation of organic carbon, or both coupled with a CO2 selective membrane to recover the CO2 into deionized water. The change in conductivity of the deionized water is measured and related to carbon concentration in the oxidized sample. Inorganic carbon is determined in a similar manner without the oxidation step. In both cases, the sample is acidified to facilitate CO2 recovery through the membrane. The relationship between the conductivity measurement and carbon concentration is described by a set of chemometric equations for the chemical equilibrium of CO2, HCO3, and H+, and the relationship between the ionic concentrations and the conductivity. The chemometric model includes the temperature dependence of the equilibrium constants and the specific conductances resulting in linear response of the method over the stated range of TOC. See Test Method D4519 for a discussion of the measurement of CO2 by conductivity.

    1.2 This test method has the advantage of a very high sensitivity detector that allows very low detection levels on relatively small volumes of sample. Also, use of two measurement channels allows determination of CO2 in the sample independently of organic carbon. Isolation of the conductivity detector from the sample by the CO2 selective membrane results in a very stable calibration, with minimal interferences.

    1.3 This test method was used successfully with reagent water spiked with various organic materials. It is the user's responsibility to ensure the validity of this test method for waters of untested matrices.

    1.4 In addition to laboratory analyses, this test method may be adapted to on line monitoring. See Test Method D5997.

    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

    D1129 Terminology Relating to Water

    D1192 Guide for Equipment for Sampling Water and Steam in Closed Conduits

    D1193 Specification for Reagent Water

    D2777 Practice for Determination of Precision and Bias of Applicable Test Methods of Committee D19 on Water

    D3370 Practices for Sampling Water from Closed Conduits

    D4210 Practice for Intralaboratory Quality Control Procedures and a Discussion on Reporting Low-Level Data

    D4519 Test Method for On-Line Determination of Anions and Carbon Dioxide in High Purity Water by Cation Exchange and Degassed Cation Conductivity

    D5997 Test Method for On-Line Monitoring of Total Carbon, Inorganic Carbon in Water by Ultraviolet, Persulfate Oxidation, and Membrane Conductivity Detection


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 13.060.50 (Examination of water for chemical substances)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code


    DOI: 10.1520/D6317-98R09

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