DEVELOPMENT OF A SIMPLE, RAPID FIELD TECHNIQUE FOR ESTIMATING OIL CONCENTRATIONS IN THE SEDIMENTS

In the advent of an oil spill in coastal waters, it would be highly desirable to be able to detect the migration of oil into the sediments using techniques in the field rather than waiting for the results of sophisticated laboratory analysis. A rapid method for estimating the relative concentration of oil in sediments was developed and may effectively be employed in the field by non-technical personnel. The method employs a TLC (thin-layer chromatographic) technique to concentrate, rather than separate, the fluorescent compounds in oil in one area of the chromatogram. The limit of detection on the chromatogram is 2 micrograms of Empire Mix or Saudi Arabian crude oil. This method is not intended to identify sources of oil in sediments (finger-printing), nor to determine the total quantity of oil in sediments; rather, it is a rapid, inexpensive field method for locating areas where the sediments contain oil and for estimating the relative amount of oil in comparison to adjacent areas. The utility of the method has been demonstrated in trials conducted aboard ship during a sampling trip in the Gulf of Mexico and on sediment samples collected in response to the ARGO MERCHANT spill incident.

  • Corporate Authors:

    Mississippi State University, Mississippi State

    Mississippi State, MS  USA  39762
  • Authors:
    • Brown, L R
  • Publication Date: 1977-4

Media Info

  • Pagination: 26 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00166473
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: National Technical Information Service
  • Report/Paper Numbers: USCG-D-27-77
  • Contract Numbers: DOT-CG-81-76-1476
  • Files: NTIS
  • Created Date: Oct 29 2002 12:00AM