Global Centre for Environmental Remediation, Research and Innovation Division, University of Newcastle, Callaghan, NSW 2308, Australia; CRC for Contamination Assessment and Remediation of Environment, University of Newcastle, Callaghan, NSW 2308, Australia. Electronic address: [Email]
In this study, the infrared spectrum (4000-400 cm-1) was applied to identify and classify the different alkanes based on carbon chain length (Cn). It was found there were two bands coherent to the doublet at location 2954 and 2872 cm-1, respectively can be applied to identify the fraction of carbon chains. From C20 to C37, by the increase of the Cn, the intensities of the two bands were reduced as demonstrated. There were another two doublets existed at the region from 1480 to 1450 cm-1 and the region at 750 and 730 cm-1. It was observed the intensity of one coherent band at each of these regions was increased following the increase on the Cn. The bands center at 1462 and 730 cm-1 were increased from C20 to C37. The intensity ratio of the coherent bands can be applied to identify the Cn. Successfully identify four different petroleum products with different fractions of carbon chains in soil samples, is evidence the theory can be applied to investigate the fraction of carbon chains in soil. Coupling with handheld FTIR, it is possible to rapidly estimate the dominant fraction of Cn in soil in field.