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White Papers

Emission measurement of plastics

Plastics, natural materials, pigments, varnishes and paints can emit volatile organic compounds (VOC) and semivolatile organic compounds (fog) into the ambient and breathing air under changing conditions, use and during processing.

GWP is your partner for all kinds of plastic emission tests. In addition to determining odour behaviour, we are able to identify individual substances and determine their emission behaviour under changing environmental conditions, e.g. at different temperatures in a climatic chamber, by coupling different analytical systems (e.g.: LC-MS, HS-GC-MS & Thermodesorption-GC-MS). In addition to common analyses, such as those according to VDA standards (German Association of the Automotive Industry), we are also happy to develop customised tests for your product.

An excerpt of our test portfolio:

Odour test VDA 270 2018-01

Determination of the odour behaviour of materials used in vehicle interiors.

For testing, components are stored in odourless jars with or without the addition of water in a heating cabinet at an elevated temperature. After cooling, the emitted odour is evaluated by independent qualified testers according to a rating scale specified in the standard.

Further standards:

  • VW PV 3900 2019-04 Components of the vehicle interior - odor test
  • Suzuki SES N 2405 2014-08 Odor sensory evaluation
  • Daimler DBL 5430 2019-07
  • DIN ISO 12219-7 2017-08

Formaldehyde emission VDA 275 1994-07

Determination of formaldehyde emission - Measurement method according to the modified bottle method

For testing, test specimens of a certain mass and dimension are fixed above distilled water in a closed bottle and stored at constant temperature for a defined time. Subsequently, the emitted formaldehyde in the water is quantified by means of quantitative LC-MS. The amount of formaldehyde determined is related to dry moulding weight (mg/kg).

Further standards:

  • BMW AA-0061 2014-02 Determination of the emission of formaldehyde
  • FIAT 7-G2090 Vehicle interior components - Determination of formaldehyde content
  • FORD BZ 156-01 2011 Determination of formaldehyde, aldehyde, and ketone emissions from non metallic components, parts and materials in the vehicle interior
  • GM GMW 15635 2020-02 Determination of aldehyde and ketone emissions from interior materials

Chamber emission VDA 276 2005-12

Determination of organic emissions - Measurement method with 1 m³ test chamber

For testing, components are exposed to a defined temperature programme in a 1 m³ climatic chamber. The emission of organic substances is continuously recorded by GC-FID. Single and problem substances are determined at the end of the temperature cycle by means of adsorption on DNPH and TENAX tubes and subsequent analysis by HPLC-MS or thermodesorption-GC-MS. In addition, the fogging behaviour of the components can also be determined by means of a cooled condensation trap in the test chamber.

Further standards:

  • DIN ISO 12219-6 2015-04
  • DIN ISO 12219-4 2013-12
  • BMW GS 97014-2 2011-04
  • BMW GS 97014-3 2014-04
  • VW PV 3942 2016-08
  • Porsche PN 780 2017-01
  • Suzuki SES N 2403 2019-07

Total carbon emission VDA 277 1995-01

Determination of the emission of organic compounds

The total carbon emission of non-metallic automotive materials is investigated in the test procedure according to the VDA 277 standard. By means of headspace GC, the comminuted sample is stored in a sealed gas volume and then separated and analysed by gas chromatography. The emission is determined in µg of carbon per gram of sample.

In contrast to VDA 278, VDA 277 does not identify the individual VOCs by means of mass spectrometric detection. Only a sum parameter is determined by means of GC-FID.

Further standards:

  • VW PV 3341 1995-03
  • Daimler DBL 5430 2019-07

Thermal desorption analysis VDA 278 2011-09

Thermodesorption analysis of organic emissions for the characterisation of non-metallic automotive materials.

The emissions of non-metallic materials used for moulded parts in motor vehicles are determined according to the VDA 278 standard. For this purpose, two semi-quantitative sum values are determined, which allow an estimation of the emission of volatile organic compounds (VOC value) and the proportion of condensable substances (fog value).

The analysis includes thermal extraction of the samples, gas chromatographic separation of the emissions and their mass spectrometric detection. In contrast to VDA 277, an identification of the individual volatile components as well as a semi-quantitative determination is carried out.

The thermodesorption GC-MS (VDA 278 or in modified form) is frequently used by us to clarify damage to plastic parts. It is a very sensitive measuring method and allows the detection of the smallest impurities.

Society for Materials Testing
Ensuring quality | Accompanying development | Analyzing damage | Passing on knowledge

GWP Gesellschaft für Werkstoffprüfung mbH
Georg-Wimmer-Ring 25
85604 Zorneding/München

Tel. +49 8106 994110
Fax +49 8106 994111

Handelsregister München
HRB 53245
USt.-IdNr. DE131179893

General Manager
Dr. Julius Nickl

Ein Unternehmen der