Measurement for our planet
Measurement for our planet

As COP26 approaches, discover how NPL plays a key role in enabling climate action through the delivery of accurate, reliable data that supports decision making and enables low carbon innovation.

Gas standards to support accurate measurement of refinery emissions

NPL's refinery gas standards are used to calibrate gas chromatographs, enabling the composition of real refinery gases to be determined. This allows the user to calculate the carbon content and other physical parameters of the gas, ensuring compliance with carbon trading legislation.

NPL provides high-accuracy gas standards for the analysis of a range of refinery gases. These gases, which include syngas, coke oven gas, reformer gas and blast furnace gas, are produced and emitted during the production and refining of petroleum products and solid fuels.

The range of refinery gas standards covered by NPL's UKAS accreditation is shown below. Mixtures containing other components may be prepared on request.

Component Amount fraction
range (cmol/mol) *
Nitrogen 0.1 to 95
Carbon monoxide 0.1 to 11
Carbon dioxide 0.3 to 8
Oxygen 0.2 to 2.5
Hydrogen 1 to 70
Helium 5 to 10
Methane 1 to 85
Ethane 0.3 to 35
Ethene 0.1 to 12
Ethyne 0.025 to 2
Propane 0.1 to 18
Component Amount fraction
range (cmol/mol) *
Propene 0.04 to 7.0
i-butane 0.1 to 4
n-butane 0.1 to 6
1-butene 0.015 to 1.55
i-butene 0.018 to 1.2
trans-2-butene 0.015 to 0.85
cis-2-butene 0.015 to 0.35
1,3-butadiene 0.01 to 0.65
i-pentane 0.05 to 0.8
n-pentane 0.05 to 0.8

* 1 cmol/mol is equal to 0.01 mol/mol and is equivalent to the 'unit' % mol/mol often used by the refinery gas industry.

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