Gas chromatography is one of the most widely used techniques for analyzing hydrocarbon mixtures. Some of the advantages of chromatography are the range of measurement (from ppm levels up to 100%), the detection of a wide range of components, and the repeatability of the measurements. Chromatography is used in the laboratory, in permanently installed online systems, and in the field with portable systems. No matter the location, style or brand, all gas chromatographs are composed of the same functional components that are the sample handling system, the chromatograph oven, and the controller electronics (refer Figure 1). This paper will cover the principles or sample handling, how chromatograph columns separate the components, why and how multi-port analysis valves are used, the common detector type used in the hydrocarbon applications, and the analysis processing that provides the component concentrations and the other calculated values (such as heating value and specific gravity) through physical reports or interfaces to other devices.
FUNDAMENTALS OF GAS CHROMATOGRAPHY
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