Accurate analysis of HCl in biomethane using laser absorption spectroscopy and ion-exchange chromatography
Biomethane is a renewable energy gas with great potential to contribute to the diversification and greening of the natural gas supply. Ideally, biomethane can directly be injected into the natural gas grid system. For grid injection, specifications such as those in EN 16723-1 shall be met. One of the impurities to be monitored is hydrogen chloride (HCl). To assess conformity with the specification for HCl, accurate and reliable test methods are required. Here, we report the development of three novel test methods, based on a variety of laser absorption spectroscopy techniques (Direct absorption spectroscopy-DAS and wavelength modulation spectroscopy-WMS) and ion-exchange chromatography, for the measurement of HCl in biomethane. Gas mixtures of HCl in biomethane were used to demonstrate the performance of the spectroscopic systems in the nmol mol−1 to low μmol mol−1 ranges, achieving uncertainties in the 4% range, k = 2. For ion-exchange chromatography analysis, HCl was first collected on an alkali-impregnated quartz fiber filter. The analysis was performed according to ISO 21438-2 and validated using synthetic biomethane spiked with HCl. The relative expanded uncertainties for the ion exchange chromatography HCl measurements are in the 10–37% range, k = 2. The results presented for the 3 test methods demonstrate that the respective methods can be used for HCl conformity assessment in biomethane.