Separation of natural hydrocarbon minerals into their constituents non-destructively is a very difficult problem. A non-destructive analysis of the hydrocarbon minerals is essential to their wise utilization. Chromatography represents a non-destructive means of separating adsorbable substances non-destructively with a high degree of purity. The chromatographic separation is based upon the simple principle of the difference in adsorption affinity of compounds for a particular adsorbent. The chromatographic separation of gilsonite was, therefore, undertaken in an effort to prove that the adsorbable compounds of this hydrocarbon mineral could be separated by this simple non-destructive method. The first chromatographic columns of alumina, silica gel, and calcium carbonate gave no indication of band formations. There were neither natural colored zones, nor flourescent zones under the ultraviolet lamp to indicate that separations were taking place. The isolated adsorbed material from an empirically divided calcium carbonate column did indicate a gradual color variation from yellow to black from bottom to top of the column.
College and Department
Physical and Mathematical Sciences; Chemistry and Biochemistry
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Bezzant, Harold Albert, "The chromatographic separation of gilsonite" (1949). Theses and Dissertations. 8169.