ASTM-D6866 Standard Test Methods for Determining the Biobased Content of Solid, Liquid, and Gaseous Samples Using Radiocarbon Analysis

Show Complete Document History

Document Center Inc. is an authorized dealer of ASTM standards.
The following bibliographic material is provided to assist you with your purchasing decision:

Standard Test Methods for Determining the Biobased Content of Solid, Liquid, and Gaseous Samples Using Radiocarbon Analysis



Changes from the previous issue

A redline edition is available for this document, with all changes visible. Ask Document Center Inc. for more information.


1.1 This standard is a test method that teaches how to experimentally measure biobased carbon content of solids, liquids, and gaseous samples using radiocarbon analysis. These test methods do not address environmental impact, product performance and functionality, determination of geographical origin, or assignment of required amounts of biobased carbon necessary for compliance with federal laws.

1.2 These test methods are applicable to any product containing carbon-based components that can be combusted in the presence of oxygen to produce carbon dioxide (CO2) gas. The overall analytical method is also applicable to gaseous samples, including flue gases from electrical utility boilers and waste incinerators.

1.3 These test methods make no attempt to teach the basic principles of the instrumentation used although minimum requirements for instrument selection are referenced in the References section. However, the preparation of samples for the above test methods is described. No details of instrument operation are included here. These are best obtained from the manufacturer of the specific instrument in use.

1.4 Limitation—This standard is applicable to laboratories working without exposure to artificial carbon-14 (14C). Artificial 14C is routinely used in biomedical studies by both liquid scintillation counter (LSC) and accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) laboratories and can exist within the laboratory at levels 1,000 times or more than 100 % biobased materials and 100,000 times more than 1% biobased materials. Once in the laboratory, artificial 14C can become undetectably ubiquitous on door knobs, pens, desk tops, and other surfaces but which may randomly contaminate an unknown sample producing inaccurately high biobased results. Despite vigorous attempts to clean up contaminating artificial 14C from a laboratory, isolation has proven to be the only successful method of avoidance. Completely separate chemical laboratories and extreme measures for detection validation are required from laboratories exposed to artificial 14C. Accepted requirements are:

(1) disclosure to clients that the laboratory(s) working with their products and materials also works with artificial 14C

(2) chemical laboratories in separate buildings for the handling of artificial 14C and biobased samples

(3) separate personnel who do not enter the buildings of the other

(4) no sharing of common areas such as lunch rooms and offices

(5) no sharing of supplies or chemicals between the two

(6) quasi-simultaneous quality assurance measurements within the detector validating the absence of contamination within the detector itself. (1, 2, and 3)2

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, health, and environmental practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.

Note 1: ISO 16620-2 is equivalent to this standard.

1.6 This international standard was developed in accordance with internationally recognized principles on standardization established in the Decision on Principles for the Development of International Standards, Guides and Recommendations issued by the World Trade Organization Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) Committee.


accelerator mass spectrometry; biobased; biogenic; bomb carbon; 14C (carbon-14); carbon dating; isotope ratio mass spectrometry; liquid scintillation counting; new carbon; old carbon; percent modern carbon;; ICS Number Code 71.040.50 (Physicochemical methods of analysis)

To find similar documents by ASTM Volume:

08.03 (Plastics (III): D5117 - latest; Reinforced Plastic Piping Systems and Chemical Equipment; Plastic Building Products)

To find similar documents by classification:

71.040.50 (Physicochemical methods of analysis Including spectrophotometric and chromatographic analysis)

This document comes with our free Notification Service, good for the life of the document.

This document is available in either Paper or PDF format.

Document Number


Revision Level




Modification Type


Publication Date

March 1, 2018

Document Type

Test Method

Page Count

19 pages

Committee Number