A method for the determination of 15 aromatic hydrocarbons in eluates from solid residues produced during the co-pyrolysis of plastics and pine biomass was developed. In a first step, several sampling techniques (headspace solid phase microextraction (HS-SPME), static headspace sampling (HS), and dispersive liquid-liquid microextraction (DLLME) were compared in order to evaluate their sensitivity towards these analytes. HS-SPME and HS sampling had the better performance, but DLLME was itself as a technique able to extract volatiles with a significant enrichment factor. HS sampling coupled with GC-MS was chosen for method validation for the analytes tested. Calibration curves were constructed for each analyte with correlation coefficients higher than 0.999. The limits of detection were in the range of 0.66-37.85 ng/L. The precision of the HS method was evaluated and good repeatability was achieved with relative standard deviations of 4.8-13.2%. The recoveries of the analytes were evaluated by analysing fortified real eluate samples and were in the range of 60.6-113.9%. The validated method was applied in real eluate samples. Benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylenes (BTEX) were the compounds in higher concentrations. The DLLME technique coupled with GC-MS was used to investigate the presence of less volatile contaminants in eluate samples. This analysis revealed the presence of significant amounts of alkyl phenols and other aromatic compounds with appreciable water solubility.
- Pyrolysis residues
- Solid phase microextraction
- Volatile aromatic hydrocarbons