Volatile Organic Compounds


Non-Volatile, Semi-Volatile, or Volatile: Redefining Volatile for VOCs 
by Uyen-Uyen T. Vo and Michael P. Morris (PDF, 407kb) - December 2012

The term volatile organic compound (VOC) is poorly defined because volatility is subjective. There are numerous standardized tests designed to determine VOC content, each with an implied method to determine volatility. The parameters (time, temperature, reference material, column polarity, etc.) used in the definitions and the associated test methods were created without a significant evaluation of volatilization characteristics in real world settings. Not only do these differences lead to varying VOC content results, but occasionally they conflict with one another. An ambient evaporation study of selected analytes and a few formulated products was conducted and the results were compared to several current VOC test methodologies, as follows: South Coast AQMD Method 313 (M313), ASTM Standard Test Method E 1868-10 (E1868) and U.S. EPA Reference Method 24 (M24). The ambient evaporation study showed a definite distinction between non-volatile, semi-volatile and volatile compounds. Some low vapor pressure (LVP) solvents, currently considered exempt as a VOC by some methods, volatilize at ambient conditions nearly as rapidly as the traditional high volatility solvents they are meant to replace. Conversely, bio-based and heavy hydrocarbons did not readily volatilize, though they often are calculated as VOCs in some traditional test methods. The study suggests that regulatory standards should be reevaluated to better reflect these findings to more accurately reflect real world emission from the use of VOC containing products.  

Development of an Improved VOC Analysis Method for Architectural Coatings (PDF, 9.7MB) - December 15, 2008

Prepared for California Air Resources Board and the California Environmental Protection Agency
by Dane R. Jones, Professor and Max T. Wills, Professor Emeritus
Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
California Polytechnic State University
San Luis Obispo, CA 93407

Reducing VOC Emissions from VOC-Containing Materials - March 2012 (PDF, 6.3MB)

This presentations provides background on VOC emissions and control strategies for VOC containing liquid material (coatings, adhesives, metalworking fluids, etc.).

Reducing VOC and Toxic Emissions - April 2013 (PDF, 5.7MB)

This presentations provides an overview on VOC emissions, source specific emissions, fugitive emissions and the control strategies used to reduce both VOC and Toxic emissions.

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