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Analysis of Hydrocarbon Gases in Water

Event Announcement

Thursday, Mar 8, 2018

Predrill background studies to support hydraulic fracturing activities in the various shale plays are a common risk management strategy. Ground water analysis for methane & other light hydrocarbon gases is a critical component of these studies.  No fully validated USEPA methods are available yet.  ASTM recently released D8028 to address many of the limitations of the previous analytical options.

Environmental Standards (ESI) was retained by the Marcellus Shale Coalition (MSC) to lead an effort to identify the source of observed dissolved light gas variability.  The goal of this effort is to improve the accuracy and reproducibility of dissolved gas analysis in ground water, an especially critical aspect when comparing pre-drill to post-completion data.  This effort is currently in the middle of Phase III of a multi-year study.  The two prior double-blind round-robin phases identified a significant low bias, up to 60% loss, for half of the 15 laboratories that participated.  

Initially TestAmerica developed its own dissolved gas analyte in water reference materials to evaluate the accuracy of its laboratory processes. Analytical process differences between handling of water samples & gas phase based standards can introduce a low bias. These biases arise from analyte losses & non-equilibrium conditions. Use of water based reference materials facilitates evaluation of each step in the analytical process. Switching to water phase calibration standards can improve the accuracy of the final results, but regulatory acceptance for this practice is limited at present.  Internal and external proficiency test samples demonstrate that routinely meeting the 70-130% recovery window requested by many lab clients is possible.

Topics Presented:

  • General overview ‘ state of affairs’ for dissolved gas analysis
  • Review of ESI’s review of multiple laboratories performance for dissolved gas analysis
  • Current status of TestAmerica’s approach to dissolved gas analysis

Who Should Attend?

  • Consulting and Engineering firms involved in hydraulic fracturing
  • Industry Representatives firms involved in hydraulic fracturing
  • Regulatory Officials

A question and answer session will immediately follow the presentation. At the conclusion of each webinar, you will be asked for your feedback and opinions for future webinar topics to be developed by TestAmerica.

March 8, 2018