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Improved assessment of pyrogenic carbon quantity and quality in environmental samples by high-performance liquid chromatography


Wiedemeier, Daniel B; Hilf, Michael D; Smittenberg, Rienk H; Haberle, Simon G; Schmidt, Michael W I (2013). Improved assessment of pyrogenic carbon quantity and quality in environmental samples by high-performance liquid chromatography. Journal of Chromatography. A, 1304:246-250.

Abstract

The analysis of pyrogenic carbon (PyC) in environmental samples is of great interest, e.g. for carbon cycle assessment, (bio-)char characterization and palaeo-environmental or archeological reconstruction. Here, an HPLC method (HPLC) is presented that reproducibly quantifies benzene polycarboxylic acids (BPCA) as molecular markers for PyC in various kinds of environmental samples. It operates at low pH without requiring an organic modifier and was thoroughly tested with PyC reference materials and a peatland core that served as a feasibility and plausibility check. Compared to the established gas chromatography (GC) method, the HPLC method results in higher BPCA quantification reproducibility by showing a significantly smaller coefficient of variation (HPLC: 5%, GC: 16–23%). It works well with small sample amounts, as for instance from sediment cores and aerosol collectors, and requires less sample preparation work than the GC method. Moreover, the here presented HPLC method facilitates 13C and 14C analyses on PyC from environmental samples.

Abstract

The analysis of pyrogenic carbon (PyC) in environmental samples is of great interest, e.g. for carbon cycle assessment, (bio-)char characterization and palaeo-environmental or archeological reconstruction. Here, an HPLC method (HPLC) is presented that reproducibly quantifies benzene polycarboxylic acids (BPCA) as molecular markers for PyC in various kinds of environmental samples. It operates at low pH without requiring an organic modifier and was thoroughly tested with PyC reference materials and a peatland core that served as a feasibility and plausibility check. Compared to the established gas chromatography (GC) method, the HPLC method results in higher BPCA quantification reproducibility by showing a significantly smaller coefficient of variation (HPLC: 5%, GC: 16–23%). It works well with small sample amounts, as for instance from sediment cores and aerosol collectors, and requires less sample preparation work than the GC method. Moreover, the here presented HPLC method facilitates 13C and 14C analyses on PyC from environmental samples.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geography
Dewey Decimal Classification:910 Geography & travel
Language:English
Date:2013
Deposited On:05 Sep 2013 11:13
Last Modified:03 Oct 2017 23:31
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0021-9673
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chroma.2013.06.012

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