ASTM D6423 - 08

    Standard Test Method for Determination of pHe of Ethanol, Denatured Fuel Ethanol, and Fuel Ethanol (Ed75-Ed85)

    Active Standard ASTM D6423 | Developed by Subcommittee: D02.A0.02

    Book of Standards Volume: 05.03


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    Significance and Use

    The acid strength, as measured by pHe, is a good predictor of the corrosion potential of ethanol fuels. It is preferable to total acidity because total acidity does not measure acid strength; overestimates the contribution of weak acids, such as carbonic acid; and may underestimate the corrosion potential of low concentrations of strong acids, such as sulfuric acid.

    1. Scope

    1.1 This test method covers a procedure to determine a measure of the acid strength of high ethanol content fuels. These include ethanol, denatured fuel ethanol, and fuel ethanol (Ed75-Ed85). The test method is applicable to fuels containing nominally 70 volume % ethanol, or higher, as described in Specifications D 4806 and D 5798.

    1.2 Acid strength as measured in this test method is defined as pHe. A pHe value for alcohol solutions is not comparable to pH values of water solutions. For example, a 1.5×10-5 M (18 ppm) solution of H2SO4 gives a pH of about 5.5 in water solution, but, depending on buffering strength, a pHe as low as 1 to 2 in unadditized alcohol fuel.

    1.3 The value of pHe measured will depend somewhat on the fuel blend, the stirring rate, and the time the electrode is in the fuel.

    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

    D4806 Specification for Denatured Fuel Ethanol for Blending with Gasolines for Use as Automotive Spark-Ignition Engine Fuel

    D5798 Specification for Ethanol Fuel Blends for Flexible-Fuel Automotive Spark-Ignition Engines


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 27.060.10 (Liquid and solid fuel burners)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code


    DOI: 10.1520/D6423-08

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