Water, Air, and Soil Pollution

, Volume 120, Issue 3–4, pp 381–396 | Cite as

Characterization of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons Created in Lubricating Oils

  • J. Wang
  • C. R. Jia
  • C. K. Wong
  • P. K. WongEmail author


Used lubricating oils are majorsources of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) inmarine environments. This study presents an improvedmethod for characterization PAHs in used lubricatingoils. Recoveries of sixteen certified PAHs spikedinto used lubricating oil indicated this method wasmore precise and efficient than those reportedpreviously. Aromatic and aliphatic compounds in usedlubricating oil were extracted by dimethylsulfoxide,then separated by a silica gel column using hexane anddichloromethane as solvents. Finally, gaschromatography-mass spectrometry was used inqualitative and quantitative analysis of various PAHsin oil samples. Sixteen certified PAHs andeighty-three other PAHs were identified and quantified usingPAH standards and previously reported retentionindices as references. The improved method was usedto determine PAH profiles in lubricating oil samplescollected from a gasoline-driven automobile aftervarious driving distances. One hundred and eightyaromatic compounds, including ninety-nine PAHs, wereidentified by the gas chromatographic method. Theseresults suggested that the new method was superior tomethods described in previous studies. Theconcentrations of PAHs, including the comparativelytoxic 5-ring PAHs, increased rapidly even after theautomobile had only been driven for a short distance. 2- and 3-ring PAHs, most of them are alkylated,dominated the PAH profiles of the collected oil samples.

characterization lubricating oil PAHs 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of BiologyThe Chinese University of Hong KongShatin, N.THong Kong
  2. 2.Department of Environmental ScienceNankai UniversityTianjinChina
  3. 3.Department of Biology and Centre for Environmental StudiesThe Chinese University of Hong KongShatin, N.THong Kong

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