Method 8021B

Aromatic and Halogenated Volatiles by Gas Chromatography using Photoionization and/or Electrolytic Conductivitity Detectors


Method 8021 is used to determine volatile organic compounds in a variety of solid waste matrices. This method is applicable to nearly all types of samples, regardless of water content, including ground water, aqueous sludges, caustic liquors, acid liquors, waste solvents, oily wastes, mousses, tars, fibrous wastes, polymeric emulsions, filter cakes, spent carbons, spent catalysts, soils, and sediments.

Method 8021 provides gas chromatographic conditions for the detection of halogenated and aromatic volatile organic compounds. Samples can be analyzed using direct injection (Method 3585 for oily matrices), purge and trap (Methods 5030/5035), headspace (Method 5021), or vacuum distillation (Method 5032). Groundwater samples may be analyzed using Method 5030, Method 5021, or Method 5032. A temperature program is used in the gas chromatograph (GC) to separate the organic compounds. Detection is achieved by a photoionization detector (PID) and a Hall electrolytic conductivity detector (HECD) in series. The GC system may also be set up to use a single detector when an analyst is looking for only halogenated compounds (HECD) or aromatic compounds (PID).

Tentative identifications are obtained by analyzing standards under the same conditions used for samples and comparing resultant GC retention times. Confirmatory information can be gained by comparing the relative response from the two detectors. Concentrations of the identified components are measured by relating the response produced for that compound to the response produced by a compound that is used as an internal standard. 

SW-846 Online: Test Methods for Evaluating Solid Waste, Physical/Chemical Methods

Method Data


Analyte List


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