ARTIFACTS IN THE ANALYSIS AND ASSESSMENT OF LOW-COST CONTAINERS FOR SAMPLING AND STORING GREENHOUSE GASES

The objectives of this study were twofold: to assess two chromatographic methods for the analysis of greenhouse gases (GHG) and carbon monoxide, and to propose and evaluate a low-cost and reusable alternative system for their sampling and storage, using 10 different container configurations (flasks and bags). To that end, standard samples containing the gases of interest (CO2, CH4 and CO) and different types of real samples were tested. Finally, procedures for the sampling, storage and analysis of CO2 and CH4 were evaluated and optimized. Two chromatographic methods were applied, using different analysis conditions and columns. Gas chromatography analysis of sample stability and container reusability demonstrated that borosilicate flasks with butyl rubber and PTFE/silicone septa are ideal for storing samples, allowing up to 5 successive sampling cycles with no significant loss of recovery. For larger volume samples, multilayer foil bags are the most stable for the compounds analyzed. The tests conducted with real and synthetic gas samples under optimized chromatography conditions using both methods indicated satisfactory performance for CO2 and CH4 quantification. However, CO analysis in the column with a polystyrene-divinylbenzene stationary phase (Method 1) produced an artifact due to the presence of oxygen in the samples, restricting its quantification.