How Do I Calculate Volume Correction Factor?

Written by joe friedman
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How Do I Calculate Volume Correction Factor?
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Volume correction factor (VCF) is a tool chemists often use in their calculations to correct a random volume of gas in their equations to a standard volume. The result of the math is the ratio of the two volumes. Certain calculations depend on using a standard volume, such as determining energy content. The equation for determining VCF uses mostly standard quantities, including the freezing point of water in Kelvin, as well as standard atmospheric pressure.

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Things you need

  • Ambient air pressure, in bars
  • Actual pressure of a gas meter reading of the gas's pressure, in bars
  • Gas temperature, in Kelvin
  • Gas law deviation factor, if given

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  1. 1

    Add the ambient pressure and the gas meter pressure. For example, assume the ambient pressure is 1 bar and the gas meter pressure reading is 2 bars, giving a result of 3 bars.

  2. 2

    Multiply the previous step's result by 273.15 Kelvin, which is the freezing point of water in Kelvins. For example, 3 times 273.15 is 819.45 Kelvin-bars.

  3. 3

    Multiply the gas temperature by the standard atmospheric pressure, 1.01325 bars. For example, 400 Kelvin times 1.01325 bars is 405.3 Kelvin-bars.

  4. 4

    Multiply the previous step's result by the gas law deviation factor, if given. The gas law deviation factor is a dimensionless measure of the gas's deviation from the ideal gas law due to extreme pressures. Under ideal conditions, its value is one.

  5. 5

    Divide the second step's result by the previous step's result to obtain the volume correction factor. For example, 819.45 Kelvin-bars divided by 405.3 Kelvin-bars yields a VCF of 2.022.

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