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A Comparative Study of Bitumen Molecular-Weight Distributions

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journal contribution
posted on 08.04.1999, 00:00 by M. Domin, Alan Herod, Rafael Kandiyoti, John W. Larsen, M-J. Lazaro, Shang Li, Parviz Rahimi
A sample of Athabasca bitumen was fractionated by preparative size-exclusion chromatography (SEC), and the molecular-weight distribution of the five fractions and the original sample were determined by SEC in NMP solvent using a calibration based on polystyrene standards, by 252Cf plasma desorption mass spectrometry (PDMS), and by laser desorption and matrix-assisted laser-desorption mass spectrometry (LDMS and MALDI) and the average molecular weights were measured by vapor pressure osmometry (VPO). A comparison of the results shows that VPO, MALDI, and SEC gave similar results while PDMS showed the same trend. The molecular-weight distribution of this 525+ °C fraction is continuous up to and perhaps beyond a molecular weight of 15 000.

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