Contact for this Instrument: 

Todd Sowers

Laboratory Scientist

Email: 
tas11@psu.edu
Phone: 
814-865-1921
EESL Manager: 

Odette Mina

Managing Director of Energy and Environmental Sustainability Laboratories (EESL).

Email: 
oom5021@psu.edu
Phone: 
814-863-0002
Scientific Director: 
Susan Brantley, Distinguished Professor of Geosciences and Director of Earth and Environmental Systems Institute (EESI)
Equipment full name: 
Hewlett Packard 5890 Series II Gas Chromatography equipped with a flame ionization detector

Address: 237 Deike Building

Description: This gas chromatograph is used routinely to measure hydrocarbons, e.g methane (CH4) and ethane (C2H6) in gas or water samples from streams or wells. This techique reproducibly measures methane concentrations as low as 0.06 µg CH4/Liter of water sample. This detection limit is lower, if not the lowest detection limit, reported by academic or commercial laboratories. 

Staff Expertise: We have developed a novel technique to measure both the concentration and isotopic (13C/12C) ratio of methane dissolved in water (Wendt et al. 2018). The technique reproducibly measures [CH4] in stream water down to 0.06 µg CH4/L, lower than most commercial laboratories where detection limits have been reported as 1, 5, or 26 µg CH4/L (Li et al. 2016). A custom-designed vacuum inlet system for the GC allows for reporting a low detection limit for samples that have low concentrations and limited volume (Sowers et al. 1997; Sowers and Jubenville 2000). Our detection limit is lower than the equilbrium CHconcentration in water (0.08 µg CH4/L) in contact with present day CH4 concentrations in air, 1.87 + 0.01 ppm. In addition to CH4, we can also measure headspace gaseous composition for CO2, C2H6, C3H8, C4H10. All measurements are performed using standard industry wide techniques with comparable precision and accuracy.

 

 

 

Internal Rate: 
Instrument time: $59.00/hr, Operator time: $54.15/hr. For an estimated cost per sample, calculated based on rates of instrument and operator time, please contact us with your specific project request to include sample matrix, number of samples, and parameters of interest.
External Academic Rate: 
Instrument time: $143.95/hr, Operator time: $86.57/hr. For an estimated cost per sample, calculated based on rates of instrument and operator time, please contact us with your specific project request to include sample matrix, number of samples, and parameters of interest.
External Non-Academic Rate: 
Instrument time: $148.45/hr, Operator time: $89.28/hr. For an estimated cost per sample, calculated based on rates of instrument and operator time, please contact us with your specific project request to include sample matrix, number of samples, and parameters of interest.
Techniques: