Collect. Czech. Chem. Commun. 1986, 51, 1595-1603

Polarographic behaviour of petroleum components in aqueous solutions: Application of electrocapillary measurements and convective adsorption accumulation

Ladislav Novotný and Robert Kalvoda

UNESCO Laboratory of Environmental Electrochemistry at The J. Heyrovský Institute of Physical Chemistry and Electrochemistry, 118 40 Prague 1


Electrocapillary investigations by the drop time method revealed a rather strong surface activity of aqueous petroleum solutions and some petroleum fractions in solutions of base electrolytes at the dropping mercury electrode, depending on the quality of the surfactant. The highest surface activity and sensitivity of analytical determination was found between -0.4 and -0.6 V (S.C.E.). The detection limit of the electrocapillary method was 10-20 μg/l for Diesel oil and up to 5 times higher for petroleum samples. The sensitivity of the measurements at lowest concentrations was increased by convective adsorption accumulation at the surface of the growing drop.