The use of biodiesel is rapidly becoming more popular due to growing trends both inside and outside the petroleum industry. The U.S. Energy Information Administration shows that production of biodiesel has increased by over 100 million gallons per month since 2011, with biodiesel making up 4% of total diesel consumption in 2016. Responding to the evolving industry and social landscape, many traditional refineries have begun to incorporate biodiesel into their finished products.
Biodiesels naturally contain little sulfur, reduce soot emissions, and have a more pleasant odor than diesel fuel. Biodiesels are commonly blended with petroleum-based diesels to improve cold-weather performance and reduce compatibility issues with compression-ignition engines. Biodiesels and their feedstocks contain sulfur and chlorine, and therefore refineries must comply with sulfur regulations and monitor chlorine to protect equipment from corrosion. This elemental analysis will require a high level of precision and accuracy to ensure that concentrations are reported correctly.