ASTM D8133 Determination of Low-Level Phthalates in PVC Plastics by Solvent Extraction

ASTM D8133 test method determines the use of solvent extraction method to identify and quantify phthalates like DEHP(Bis (2-ethyhexyl) phthalate), DNOP(Di(n-octyl) phthalate), DIDP(1,2-Benzenedicarboxylic acid, 1,2-diisodecyl), BBP(Benzyl butyl phthalate), DINP(1,2-Benzenedicarboxylic acid, di-C8-10-branched alkyl esters, C9-rich), and DBP(1,2-Benzenedicarboxylic acid, 1,2-di-n-butyl ester). The plasticized polyvinyl chloride particles are extracted and analyzed by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry. The lowest level identified through this procedure is 1000 ppm. The final results are expressed in SI units.... Read More

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    The ASTM D8133 test method is important to identify and quantify phthalates in polyvinyl chloride by using the method of solvent extraction. The extracted articles are further analyzed with the help of a gas chromatograph/mass spectrometer. The method is valid for a wide range of polymeric substrates. Different readings are taken along with the determination of the specifications of phthalates. This method is important in imposing standards of use, safety, health, and welfare for different phthalates.  It is also important to separate the phthalates from PVC. This helps in deciding its application and reliability. 


    The ASTM D8133 test method requires a gas chromatograph or mass spectrometer that can function at a specific temperature ranging from 100 to 260°C. Four glass pipettes with 20 mL vials are used. A GC capillary column along with analytical balance, integrator, and data handling systems is used. 100 mg of the PVC sample is mixed with 10 mL of heptane. Then a small portion of the heptane solution is analyzed through a mass spectrometer/gas chromatograph. This helps identify and quantify phthalates through mass spectra by applying standard calibration methods. Pressure and gas are regulated through different regulators and flow meters.

    Specimen size:

    The sample size for ASTM D8133 is determined as per the requirements. In this case, 100 mg of plasticized PVC samples are dissolved in 10 mL of heptane to prepare the sample for test A, and 100 mg of phthalate is dissolved in THF and 20 mL of hexane to prepare the sample for test B.


    The quantitative ppm and reproducibility value as RSD % are calculated respectively for different phthalates such as DBP, BBP, DEHP, DNOP, DINP, and DIDP.


    The ASTM D8133 test method is important to identify and quantify phthalates in polyvinyl chloride by using the method of solvent extraction.


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