Document Type


Date of Award

Spring 5-31-1994

Degree Name

Master of Science in Environmental Science - (M.S.)


Chemical Engineering, Chemistry and Environmental Science

First Advisor

S. Mitra

Second Advisor

Barbara B. Kebbekus

Third Advisor

Henry Shaw


A thermionic ionization detector (TID) consists of a catalytically active, low work function heated source. It responds to molecules with high electron affinity which can extract electrons from the surface of the source to form negative ions. TID has been used as selective detectors for nitrogen and phosphorous compounds (NPD). In this research, a TID has been used for selective detection of oxygenated volatile organic compounds (VOCs). The response of the TID to different oxygenated and chlorinated VOCs compounds was studied. To evaluated its performance, the analysis was done using a FID in parallel with the TID. For most of the compounds studied, the TID exhibited selective responses in presence of hydrocarbons with reasonable sensitivity and linearity. Effects of various TID operating parameters, namely detector temperature, source current supply and bias voltage were studied.