ASTM-D6866 › Standard Test Methods for Determining the Biobased Content of Solid, Liquid, and Gaseous Samples Using Radiocarbon Analysis
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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. (, , and )
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 and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.
Note 1: ISO 16620-2 is equivalent to this standard.
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)
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June 15, 2016