You are on page 1of 8

ASTM D1298

Standard Test Method for Density, Relative Density, or API
Gravity of Crude Petroleum and Liquid Petroleum Products by
Hydrometer Method

Significance and Use
Accurate determination of the density, relative density (specific gravity), or API gravity
of petroleum and its products is necessary for the conversion of measured volumes to
volumes or masses, or both, at the standard reference temperatures of 15°C or 60°F
during custody transfer.
This procedure is most suitable for determining the density, relative density (specific
gravity), or API gravity of low viscosity transparent liquids. This procedure can also be
used for viscous liquids by allowing sufficient time for the hydrometer to reach
temperature equilibrium, and for opaque liquids by employing a suitable meniscus
correction. Additionally for both transparent and opaque fluids the readings shall be
corrected for the thermal glass expansion effect and alternate calibration temperature
effects before correcting to the reference temperature.
When used in connection with bulk oil measurements, volume correction errors are
minimized by observing the hydrometer reading at a temperature close to that of the
bulk oil temperature.
Density, relative density, or API gravity is a factor governing the quality and pricing of
crude petroleum. However, this property of petroleum is an uncertain indication of its
quality unless correlated with other properties.
Density is an important quality indicator for automotive, aviation and marine fuels,
where it affects storage, handling and combustion.
1. Scope
1.1 This test method covers the laboratory determination using a glass hydrometer in
conjunction with a series of calculations, of the density, relative density, or API gravity
of crude petroleum, petroleum products, or mixtures of petroleum and nonpetroleum
products normally handled as liquids, and having a Reid vapor pressure of 101.325 kPa
(14.696 psi) or less. Values are determined at existing temperatures and corrected to
15°C or 60°F by means of a series of calculations and international standard tables.
1.2 The initial hydrometer readings obtained are uncorrected hydrometer readings and
not density measurements. Readings are measured on a hydrometer at either the
reference temperature or at another convenient temperature, and readings are
corrected for the meniscus effect, the thermal glass expansion effect, alternate

5 Density/Weight/Volume Intraconversion ASTM D445 Standard Test Method for Kinematic Viscosity of Transparent and Opaque Liquids (and Calculation of Dynamic Viscosity) Significance and Use 5. or tables. 1. or API gravity can be converted to equivalent values in the other units or alternate reference temperatures by means of Interconversion Procedures (API MPMS Chapter 11. as applicable. The calculations required in Section 10 shall be applied to the initial hydrometer reading with observations and results reported as required by Section 11 prior to use in a subsequent calculation procedure (ticket calculation.1 Many petroleum products. or both. and the correct operation of the equipment depends upon the appropriate viscosity of the liquid being used. In addition. associated with its use. ASTM Standards D1250 Guide for Use of the Petroleum Measurement Tables D4057 Practice for Manual Sampling of Petroleum and Petroleum Products D4177 Practice for Automatic Sampling of Petroleum and Petroleum Products D5854 Practice for Mixing and Handling of Liquid Samples of Petroleum and Petroleum Products E1 Specification for ASTM Liquid-in-Glass Thermometers E100 Specification for ASTM Hydrometers API Standards MPMSChapter11. meter factor calculation. are used as lubricants. values obtained at other than the reference temperature being hydrometer readings and not density measurements.calibration temperature effects and to the reference temperature by means of the Petroleum Measurement Tables. relative density. the viscosity of many petroleum fuels is important for the estimation of optimum storage. 1.5 Annex A1 contains a procedure for verifying or certifying the equipment for this test method. and operational conditions.4 The initial hydrometer readings determined in the laboratory shall be recorded before performing any calculations. and some non-petroleum materials.3 Readings determined as density. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use. handling. Thus. 1.6 The values stated in SI units are to be regarded as standard.7 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns. . or base prover volume determination). or Adjunct to D1250Guide for Petroleum Measurement Tables (API MPMS Chapter 11. 1.1). The values given in parentheses are provided for information only. 1. if any.5). the accurate determination of viscosity is essential to many product specifications.

Users should be aware that selling mercury and/or mercury containing products into your state or country may be prohibited by law.3 and 6. by the density. 1. of liquid petroleum products. NOTE 2: ISO 3104 corresponds to Test Method D445 – 03. by measuring the time for a volume of liquid to flow under gravity through a calibrated glass capillary viscometer. The SI unit used in this test method for kinematic viscosity is mm2/s. Caution should be taken when handling mercury and mercury containing products. See the applicable product Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) for details and EPA’s website— http://www.2 The result obtained from this test method is dependent upon the behavior of the sample and is intended for application to liquids for which primarily the shear stress and shear rates are proportional (Newtonian flow behavior).001 Pa·s. The procedure and precision values for residual fuel oils. the viscosity varies significantly with the rate of shear. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use. For user reference. ρ. 1. and the SI unit used in this test method for dynamic viscosity is mPa·s. 1.1) at all temperatures (see 6. or its vapor. η. may be hazardous to health and corrosive to materials.2 mm2/s to 300 000 mm2/s (see Table A1. ν. 1. ASTM Standards D446 Specifications and Operating Instructions for Glass Capillary Kinematic Viscometers D1193 Specification for Reagent Water D1217 Test Method for Density and Relative Density (Specific Gravity) of Liquids by Bingham Pycnometer D1480 Test Method for Density and Relative Density (Specific Gravity) of Viscous Materials by Bingham Pycnometer D1481 Test Method for Density and Relative Density (Specific Gravity) of Viscous Materials by Lipkin Bicapillary Pycnometer D2162 Practice for Basic Calibration of Master Viscometers and Viscosity Oil Standards D2170 Test Method for Kinematic Viscosity of Asphalts (Bitumens) D2171 Test Method for Viscosity of Asphalts by Vacuum Capillary Viscometer D6071 Test Method for Low Level Sodium in High Purity Water by Graphite Furnace Atomic Absorption Spectroscopy D6074 Guide for Characterizing Hydrocarbon Lubricant Base Oils D6299 Practice for Applying Statistical Quality Assurance and Control Charting Techniques to Evaluate Analytical Measurement System Performance . kinematic viscosity ranges and temperatures as shown in the footnotes to the precision section.gov/mercury/faq. which under some conditions exhibit non-Newtonian behavior.epa. associated with its use. of the liquid. Mercury. if any. The dynamic viscosity. ν. however.htm—for additional information.4). The precision has only been determined for those materials.1. kidney and liver damage. can be obtained by multiplying the kinematic viscosity.5 WARNING—Mercury has been designated by many regulatory agencies as a hazardous material that can cause central nervous system. have been included.6 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns.4 The values stated in SI units are to be regarded as standard. NOTE 1: For the measurement of the kinematic viscosity and viscosity of bitumens. 1 mm2/s = 10-6 m2/s = 1 cSt and 1 mPa·s = 1 cP = 0.3 The range of kinematic viscosities covered by this test method is from 0.1 This test method specifies a procedure for the determination of the kinematic viscosity. both transparent and opaque. different results may be obtained from viscometers of different capillary diameters. Scope 1. see also Test Methods D2170 and D2171. 1. If.

and D3278 are specified as test methods for determining the flash point of these materials. The procedures and apparatus in Test Methods D56. or assemblies in response to heat and flame under controlled laboratory conditions and should not be used to describe or appraise the fire hazard or fire risk of materials or assemblies under actual fire conditions.nist. D93. and D3941 are to be used.gov/pml/pubs/sp811/index.4 If the process or handling conditions dictate the usage of a flammable material at temperatures ranging upward from 5 to 10°C below the closed-cup flash point.D6617 Practice for Laboratory Bias Detection Using Single Test Result from Standard Material E1 Specification for ASTM Liquid-in-Glass Thermometers E77 Test Method for Inspection and Verification of Thermometers E1137/E1137M Specification for Industrial Platinum Resistance Thermometers ISO Standards ISO17025 General Requirements for the Competence of Testing and Calibration Laboratories NIST Standards NISTSpecialPublicati Guide for the Use of the International System of Units (SI) http://www. . 5. D93. Test Methods D56.3 This test method should be used to measure and describe the properties of materials. However.2 As a result of physical factors inherent in the apparatus and procedure.1 This test method covers the determination of the flash point of liquid and solid chemical compounds flashing from below − 10 to 370°C (16 to 700°F). and the absence of a flash point does not guarantee nonflammability (see Appendix X1 and Appendix X2). Modification to these procedures are specified for tests on solids and viscous liquids. In such cases.1 The flash point measures the response of the sample to heat and flame under controlled laboratory conditions. 1. 5. 5.cfm ASTM E502 Standard Test Method for Selection and Use of ASTM Standards for the Determination of Flash Point of Chemicals by Closed Cup Methods Significance and Use 5. results of this test method may be used as elements of a fire risk assessment that take into account all of the factors that are pertinent to an assessment of the fire hazard of a particular end use. The significance of the results obtained is discussed along with possible sources of error and factors that might cause interference. 1. 5. 1. products. the closed cup flash point does not necessarily represent the minimum temperature at which a material can evolve flammable vapors.3 Flash point is used in shipping and safety regulations to define flammable and combustible materials. Scope 1. then a flammable vapor might be present above the liquid. it may be more appropriate to use the temperature limit of flammability (as determined by Test Method E1232) instead of flash point. D3278. D3828.5 Small scale methods involving equilibrium procedures and only one flame pass per specimen are preferred. It is only one of a number of properties that must be considered in assessing the overall flammability hazard of a material.2 Suggestions for adapting this procedure to mixtures of chemicals are included (see Appendix X2).

conducting particles. kidney and liver damage. or its vapor. Mercury.htm . The voltage stress distribution between the parallel disk electrodes used in this test method are quasi-uniform and there is substantial stress concentration at the sharp edges of the flat disk faces. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use. . The power-frequency breakdown voltage of a liquid is reduced by the presence of contaminants such as cellulosic fibers. may be hazardous to health and corrosive to materials.2 A high breakdown voltage measured in this test method does not necessarily indicate that the amount of the contaminants present in a liquid from which the sample was taken is sufficiently low for the sampled liquid to be acceptable in all electrical equipment. Caution should be taken when handling mercury and mercury containing products. 3. if any. Breakdown in this test method is dominated by events occurring at the electrode edges. 1.1 The dielectric breakdown voltage is a measure of the ability of an insulating liquid to withstand electrical stress. See also Section 8.for additional information.5 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns. See the applicable product Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) for details and EPA’s website – http://www. Users should be aware that selling mercury and/or mercury containing products into your state may be prohibited by state law.gov/mercury/faq. ASTM Standards D56 Test Method for Flash Point by Tag Closed Cup Tester D92 Test Method for Flash and Fire Points by Cleveland Open Cup Tester D93 Test Methods for Flash Point by Pensky-Martens Closed Cup Tester D270 Methods of Sampling Petroleum and Petroleum Products D1310 Test Method for Flash Point and Fire Point of Liquids by Tag Open-Cup Apparatus D3278 Test Methods for Flash Point of Liquids by Small Scale Closed-Cup Apparatus D3827 Test Method for Estimation of Solubility of Gases in Petroleum and Other Organic Liquids D3828 Test Methods for Flash Point by Small Scale Closed Cup Tester D3934 Test Method for Flash/No Flash Test--Equilibrium Method by a Closed-Cup Apparatus D3941 Test Method for Flash Point by the Equilibrium Method With a Closed-Cup Apparatus E681 Test Method for Concentration Limits of Flammability of Chemicals (Vapors and Gases) E1232 Test Method for Temperature Limit of Flammability of Chemicals ASTM D130 Standard Test Method for Dielectric Breakdown Voltage of Insulating Liquids Using Disk Electrodes Significance and Use 3. A low result in this test method indicates the presence of significant concentrations of one or more of these contaminants in the liquid tested.4 Warning—Mercury has been designated by EPA and many state agencies as a hazardous material that can cause central nervous system.1. See Appendix X1. Test Method D877 is not sensitive to low levels of these contaminants. dirt. and water. associated with its use.epa.

1. Scope 1.3.2 can not be achieved.2 1.3 The suitability for this test method has not been determined for a liquid's viscosity higher than 900 cSt at 40°C. See Specification D3487.2.2 If the concentration of water in the sample at room temperature is less than 60 % of saturation.1 This procedure is used to determine the breakdown voltage of liquids in which any insoluble breakdown products do not completely settle from the space between the disks during the 1–min interval required in Procedure A. 1.2 Procedure B: 1. For further information refer to RR:D27-1006.106. 1.1 Procedure A: 1.4 Procedure Applications 1. For field breakdown results to be comparable to laboratory results.2 Procedure A may be used to obtain the dielectric breakdown of silicone fluid as specified in Test Methods D2225. 3. the sensitivity of this test method to the presence of water is decreased.2.5 This test method is used in laboratory or field tests.3.1 The sensitivity of this test method to the general population of contaminants present in a liquid sample decreases as applied test voltages used in this test method become greater than approximately 25 kV rms. and similar apparatus.3. Specification D6871 and Guide D5222 for the minimum specified electrical breakdown. Specification D4652. The use of Procedure B will result in a more accurate value of breakdown voltage when testing such liquids.4.1 has been demonstrated. all criteria including room temperature (20 to 30°C) must be met. 1.4.3 Use Procedure B to establish the breakdown voltage of an insulating liquid where an ASTM specification does not exist or when developing a value for an ASTM guide or standard. load tap changers. is acceptable for testing silicone dielectric liquids if the requirements of 1. This test method should be used as recommended by professional organization standards such as IEEE C57. Test Method D1816 should be used to determine the breakdown voltage of filtered and degassed liquids. hydrocarbons. and other liquids heavily contaminated with insoluble particulate material.4. 1. as delivered from the manufacturer.1. These examples represent samples that may have large differences between replicate tests. These liquids include petroleum oils.1 Procedure A is used to determine the breakdown voltage of liquids in which any insoluble breakdown products easily settle during the interval between the required repeated breakdown tests.2.4. 1.2 Procedure B should also be applied for the determination of the breakdown voltage of liquid samples containing insoluble materials that settle from the specimen during testing. provided the discharge energy into the sample is less than 20 mJ (milli joule) per breakdown for five consecutive breakdowns.3 This test method may be used for evaluation of insulating liquids in equipment that is designed to be filled with unprocessed liquids as delivered by a vendor.4. natural and synthetic esters. Procedure B.4 This test method is not recommended for evaluation of the breakdown voltage of liquids used in equipment that requires the application of vacuum and filtering of the oil before being placed into service.3 Limitations of the Procedures: 1. that have never been filtered or dried. and askarels (PCB) used as insulating and cooling liquids in transformers. The breakdown test uses ac voltage in the power-frequency range from 45 to 65 Hz.2 This test method is used to judge if the disk electrode breakdown voltage requirements are met for insulating liquids. These may include samples taken from circuit breakers. 3.4. .1. for determining the electrical breakdown voltage of insulating liquid specimens. 1. cables.3.1 This test method describes two procedures.4. 1. Procedure A may be used once the single operator precision of13. A and B.4. modified in accordance with Section 17 of Test Methods D2225. 1.1.

3 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns. automotive gasoline. if any.) 1.2 The values stated in SI units are to be regarded as the standard. 1. distillate fuel oil. associated with its use. The values stated in each system may not be exact equivalents. Samples having vapor pressures in excess of 124 kPa (18 psi) may develop sufficient pressures at 100°C to rupture the pressure vessel.1 This test method covers the determination of the corrosiveness to copper of aviation gasoline. For specific warning statements. and Annex A2. of the sulfur compounds remaining in the petroleum product. each system shall be used independently of the other.1. 1. particularly natural gasoline. 7. may have a much higher vapor pressure than would normally be characteristic of automotive or aviation gasolines. see 1. some can have a corroding action on various metals and this corrosivity is not necessarily related directly to the total sulfur content. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory requirements prior to use. For any sample having a vapor pressure above 124 kPa (18 psi). associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use. The copper strip corrosion test is designed to assess the relative degree of corrosivity of a petroleum product. kerosine. cleaners (Stoddard) solvent. diesel fuel. However. exercise extreme caution to ensure that the pressure vessel used in this test method and containing natural gasoline or other products of high vapor pressure is not placed in the 100°C (212°F) bath. For this reason. therefore.5 The values stated in either SI units or inch-pound units are to be regarded separately as standard. . and natural gasoline or other hydrocarbons having a vapor pressure no greater than 124 kPa (18 psi) at 37. Scope 1. aviation turbine fuel.1 Crude petroleum contains sulfur compounds. ASTM Standards D923 Practices for Sampling Electrical Insulating Liquids D1816 Test Method for Dielectric Breakdown Voltage of Insulating Liquids Using VDE Electrodes D2225 Test Methods for Silicone Fluids Used for Electrical Insulation D2864 Terminology Relating to Electrical Insulating Liquids and Gases D3487 Specification for Mineral Insulating Oil Used in Electrical Apparatus D4652 Specification for Silicone Fluid Used for Electrical Insulation D5222 Specification for High Fire-Point Mineral Electrical Insulating Oils D6871 Specification for Natural (Vegetable Oil) Ester Fluids Used in Electrical Apparatus ASTM D130 Standard Test Method for Corrosiveness to Copper from Petroleum Products by Copper Strip Test Significance and Use 5. The values in parentheses are for information only. Combining values from the two systems may result in non-conformance with the standard.6 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns.8°C. 1. if any. The effect can vary according to the chemical types of sulfur compounds present.1. use Test Method D1838. (Warning—Some products. lubricating oil.1. most of which are removed during refining.

ASTM Standards D396 Specification for Fuel Oils D975 Specification for Diesel Fuel Oils D1655 Specification for Aviation Turbine Fuels D1838 Test Method for Copper Strip Corrosion by Liquefied Petroleum (LP) Gases D4057 Practice for Manual Sampling of Petroleum and Petroleum Products D4177 Practice for Automatic Sampling of Petroleum and Petroleum Products D6300 Practice for Determination of Precision and Bias Data for Use in Test Methods for Petroleum Products and Lubricants E1 Specification for ASTM Liquid-in-Glass Thermometers .