Chrysene + Triphenylene

CHR+TRI; formula:C18H12; CAS Registry Number: 218-01-9 (CHR); 217-59-4 (TRI)

Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon with four connected six-membered rings

In the samples Chrysene and Triphenylen are analysed together as sum of both compounds.

Chrysene occurs in fossil fuels and is a product of incomplete combustion. It is used in the production of UV-filters, paints and sensitizers as well as in fluorescence labelling.

Emissions into the environment are mainly caused by human activities, e.g., coal combustion, gasification, exhausts of gasoline, diesel and kerosene engines, wood burning stoves, waste incineration and emissions from metal-working industries.
Chrysene is found in fruit and vegetable from areas with high atmospheric burdens and soil contamination, in smoked and charbroiled food, and in meat with high fat content.

In the atmosphere it is adsorbed to particles and enters soils and surface waters through wet and dry deposition. Degradation is slow and it accumulates in the environment. The bioaccumulation potential of chrysene is high.

Chrysene is mutagenic in laboratory test and is suspected to be carcinogenic.

Chrysene is one of 16 PAHs which were included in the U.S. EPA-list of Priority Pollutants and is on the EU-list of PAH recommended for monitoring.

Triphenylene occurs naturally in fossil fuels and can be extracted from coal tar. It is a ubiquitous product of incomplete combustion and is found, e.g., in exhausts from engines, tobacco smoke and food and water which have been exposed to exhausts.

In laboratory tests, triphenylene is mutagenic. Due to lack of data, carcinogenicity and other toxic effects can not be evaluated.


Zebra mussel Common mussel species as invasive animal in rivers and lakes with high information level for water pollution
Suspended particulate matter Fine insoluble mineral or organic particles in the water phase
Blue mussel One of the most important edible mussel species common in the North and Baltic Sea
Common spruce A major primary producer in semi-natural and anthropogenic affected ecosystems.
Pine A major primary producer in semi-natural and anthropogenic affected ecosystems.
Lombardy poplar A deciduous tree typical of ecosystems close to dense conurbations and an indicator for the characterisation of the immission situation during the vegetation period.
Beech As the most dominant deciduous tree species in Central Europe, it plays a significant role in most nearly natural and also anthropogenically influenced forest ecosystems up to an altitude of 1100 m.
Earthworm (Aporrectodea longa) As an organism living at ground level, it is a major driver of the decomposition of organic material (e.g. plant litter).
Earthworm (Lumbricus terrestris) As an organism living at ground level, it is a major driver of the decomposition of organic material (e.g. plant litter).
Soil Soil is livelihood and biosphere for humans, animals, plants and soil organisms. All the substances brought in are transported, transformed and/or accumulated in the soil.

Sampling area

BR/NP Berchtesgaden The only high mountains national park in Germany and an area of the Limestone Alps with international relevance
Saarländischer Verdichtungsraum Important, old-industrialised conurbation in Germany.
Bornhöveder Seengebiet Main water divide between the North- and Baltic Sea
Rhein Longest river in Germany
NP Bayerischer Wald Germany's first national park
NP Vorpommersche Boddenlandschaft National Park in the largest brackish water (Bodden) habitat of the world.
BR/NP Wattenmeere National park in the world largest connected sand and mud flats.
Elbe Fourth largest river basin in Central Europe
Verdichtungsraum Halle-Leipzig Region in the chemical triangle of Central Germany
NP Harz Germany's largest forest national park
Solling Second highest and largest low mountain range in Northern Germany
BR Pfälzerwald Germany's largest connected forest area in a range of low mountains
Oberbayerisches Tertiärhügelland The Upper Bavarian Tertiary Uplands are a part of the Southern German Molasse Basin
Donau Second largest river in Europe

Sampling period

1985 - 2019