Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs)

PAHs are a broad group of chemical compounds characterized by having carbon and hydrogen atoms in their composition, grouped into aromatic rings containing five or six carbon atoms. They are produced during the incomplete combustion of coal, oils, gases, wood, household waste, and other kind of organic substances. They are found naturally in petroleum, coal, tar deposits and as products of the use of fuels, whether fossil or biomass. As pollutants, both in the environment and in the workplace, they have raised concern because some compounds have been identified as carcinogens.


The laboratory of the National Institut for Silicosis carries out the determination of PAHs by Gas Chromatography / Mass Spectrometry (GC / MS) in solid samples at trace (ppm or μg / g) and ultratrace (ppb or ng / g) levels.