Rapid method for determination of carbonyl groups in lignin compounds by headspace gas chromatography

J Chromatogr A. 2015 Jul 24;1404:39-43. doi: 10.1016/j.chroma.2015.05.055. Epub 2015 May 28.


The paper reports on a novel method for rapid determination of carbonyl in lignins by headspace gas chromatography (HS-GC). The method involves the quantitative carbonyl reduction for aldehydes in 2min at room temperature or for acetones in 30min at 80°C by sodium borohydride solution in a closed headspace sample vial. After the reaction, the solution was acidified by injecting sulfuric acid solution and the hydrogen released to the headspace was determined by GC using thermal-conductivity detector. The results showed that with the addition of SiO2 powder, the reduction reaction of carbonyl groups can be greatly facilitated. The method has a good measurement precision (RSD<7.74%) and accuracy (relative error <10% compared with a reference method) in the carbonyl quantification. It is suitable to be used for rapid determination of carbonyl content in lignin and related materials.

Keywords: Carbonyl groups; Headspace gas chromatography; Lignin; Sodium borohydride.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aldehydes / chemistry
  • Chemistry Techniques, Analytical / methods*
  • Chromatography, Gas*
  • Lignin / chemistry*
  • Silicon Dioxide / chemistry
  • Solutions


  • Aldehydes
  • Solutions
  • Silicon Dioxide
  • Lignin