Noble, Diatomic and Aliphatic Hydrocarbon Gas Analyses by Aqueous HPLC

John O. Baker, Melvin P. Tucker, Michael E. Himmel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus Citations


Dissolved non-polar gases (five noble, three diatomic, and four unbranched aliphatic hydrocarbon gases) were resolved by aqueous high-performance liquid chromatography using an ion-moderated partition chromatography column (Bio-Rad HPX-87P) originally designed for monosaccharide analysis. The dissolved-gas peaks, which were detected and quantitated by high-sensitivity refractive-index detection, are eluted at 25°C in the order Ne, He, N2, H2, O2, Ar, CH4, Kr, Xe, C2H6, C3H8, n-C4H10. Based on the general elution order, and on the temperature dependences (4-72°C) of elution times for the individual gases, a mixed chromatographic mechanism is proposed, in which separation of the gases results from a mixture of size-exclusion, ion-ion-induced dipole, and classical hydrophobic effects, plus a second type of "hydrophobic" effect involving binding of the clathrate hydrate cages surrounding non-polar solutes to similar cages formed around hydrocarbon portions of the column packing material.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)93-109
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Chromatography A
Issue numberC
StatePublished - 1985

NREL Publication Number

  • ACNR/JA-232-6976


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