Fingerprint Identification of Groundwater Petroleum Contamination Using Synchronous Scanning Fluorescence

by Daniel York Pharr, Virginia Military Inst, Lexington, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Water Resources Planning and Management: Saving a Threatened Resource—In Search of Solutions


Synchronous scanning fluorescence spectroscopy, SSF, is a simple, cost effective method for the fingerprint analysis of many petroleum contaminates in groundwater and soil samples. The contaminated groundwater samples are extracted with cyclohexane and then analyzed qualitatively using SSF. Products such as gasolines, kerosine, diesel oil, various grades of fuel oil, motor oil and asphalt have been analyzed. This analytical method has proven to be easier to use than chromatographic methods typically used for quantitative analysis of petroleum contaminants and its spectra are easier to interpret for fingerprinting purposes. A flexible computer based library of spectra that can be used for library probability matching has been developed. The user may fill in local petroleum products spectra or use the library to search for an unknown. The library may be filled by keyboard or through an RS-232 interface directly from the fluorescence instrument.

Subject Headings: Groundwater pollution | Petroleum | Imaging techniques | Soil analysis | Soil pollution | Oils | Information systems | System analysis

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