Analytical Instrumentation

  • Total automation for water in used oils using coulometric Karl Fischer

Total automation for water in used oils using coulometric Karl Fischer

Aug 18 2020

Karl Fischer titration is founded in Germany and made by the real Karl Fischer experts in ECH Elektrochemie Halle GmbH.

Water in oils and petroleum products is one of the key applications for the ECH R&D team led by Dr Michael Hahn.

Along with Dr Dorit Wilke and her team, they spent a lot of time working with key lubricant development companies and high throughput laboratories to figure out the best way to handle problematic samples with additives and high viscosity.

All samples both low and high viscosity along with oils and fuels with high concentrations of additives can now have their water contents determined with one simple instrument and totally  automated to 51 samples using the Aqua 40.00 Vario…..   

One of the most important challenges to conquer was the downtime. High throughput laboratories  are often spending a full day cleaning glass and conditioning systems taking the titrator out of service for 1 full day per week!

The Aqua 40.00 Vario with autosampler is a real game changer thanks to closed loop technology…

This is the ECH Advantage….

The traditional method of analysing trace water in solids, viscous and problematic samples is to use an oven or evaporator that is connected to a Karl Fischer titration vessel/ measuring cell.

Along with an oven, a dry carrier gas is also required, in most cases, people use a nitrogen gas generator.

This “open” system can have a major ingress of atmospheric moisture providing an unstable/wet system with high background drifts and uncertain results.

At ECH, we offer a “closed loop” system where by the oven and Karl Fischer titration cell are actually connected via tubings and a peristatic pump.  

During the pre-conditioning/pre-titration phase, the ambient air with in the oven/tubings is circulated into the “drying” measuring vessel. Soon, the instrument reaches an end point having titrated all atmospheric water with in the oven/tubings and titration cell.   

The main benefits of the ECH closed loop are:

Small footprint and lower cost (oven directly attached to titrator and no requirement for a gas generator or external gas supply).

Closed loop means zero atmospheric interference (more stable drift and quicker pre-conditioning).

Longer reagent life time thanks to the titration vessel only having the moisture introduced, not the entire sample. When analysing low ppm water, it is possible to analyse up to 1000 samples in between reagent replenishment.

Another ECH advantage is the temperature control…..

Aqua 40.00 offer temperature-programmed heating procedures ranging from 30-300 degrees C that can be defined individually by the user. Such a temperature program reveals in which way the moisture in question is bonded to the sample substance. You can distinguish between chemically bonded water of crystallization and adsorbed surface water.

In summary,  the Aqua 40.00 Vario made by ECH takes your water content determination to the next level:

  • Zero atmospheric interference
  • Low and stable drift
  • High sample through put
  • You can distinguish free water and chemically bonded water
  • Total automation

All thanks to the ECH advantage


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