Portal:Analytical chemistry

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Analytical chemistry is the study of the chemical composition of natural and artificial materials. Unlike other major sub disciplines of chemistry such as inorganic chemistry and organic chemistry, analytical chemistry is not restricted to any particular type of chemical compound or reaction. Properties studied in analytical chemistry include geometric features such as molecular morphologies and distributions of species, as well as features such as composition and species identity. The contributions made by analytical chemists have played critical roles in the sciences ranging from the development of concepts and theories (pure science) to a variety of practical applications, such as biomedical applications, environmental monitoring, quality control of industrial manufacturing and forensic science (applied science).

Traditionally, analytical chemistry has been split into two main types, qualitative and quantitative:

Analytical chemists use a variety of different techniques to identify and measure the chemical species in a sample. Some techniques, such as titrations, use chemical reactions. Other techniques use the physical properties of the sample, such as the way it absorbs light, to identify compounds present. Nearly every technique relies on comparing the unknown substance to a similar substance (or solution) whose composition is known. This substance with a known composition is the standard or reference material.

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Animation of the dispersion of light as it travels through a triangular prism.

Spectroscopy is the study of the interaction between radiation (electromagnetic radiation, or light, as well as particle radiation) and matter. Spectrometry is the measurement of these interactions and an instrument which performs such measurements is a spectrometer or spectrograph. A plot of the interaction is referred to as a spectrum.

Historically, spectroscopy referred to a branch of science in which visible light was used for the theoretical study of the structure of matter and for qualitative and quantitative analyses. Recently, however, the definition has broadened as new techniques have been developed that utilise not only visible light, but many other forms of radiation.

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300 MHz NMR Spectrometer

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Franz Ritter von Soxhlet (January 12, 1848– May 5, 1926) was a German agricultural chemist from Brno. He invented the Soxhlet extractor in 1879 and in 1886 he proposed that pasteurization be applied to milk.

A Soxhlet extractor is a piece of laboratory apparatus invented in 1879 by Franz von Soxhlet [1]. It was originally designed for the extraction of a lipid from a solid material. However, a Soxhlet extractor is not limited to the extraction of lipids. Typically, a Soxhlet extraction is only required where the desired compound has only a limited solubility in a solvent, and the impurity is insoluble in that solvent. If the desired compound has a high solubility in a solvent then a simple filtration can be used to separate the compound from the insoluble substance.

Methods and Applications

By Analytical Targets
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or Combinations of the above techniques produce "hybrid" or "hyphenated" techniques :

  1. LC-MS (or HPLC-MS)
  3. LC-DAD
  4. CE-MS
  5. CE-UV
  6. GC-MS
  • Genomics - DNA sequencing and its related research. Genetic fingerprinting and DNA microarray are very popular tools and research fields.
  • Proteomics - the analysis of protein concentrations and modifications, especially in response to various stressors, at various developmental stages, or in various parts of the body.
  • Metabolomics - similar to proteomics, but dealing with metabolites.
  • Transcriptomics- mRNA and its associated field
  • Lipidomics - lipids and its associated field
  • Peptidomics - peptides and its associated field
  • Metalomics - similar to proteomics and metabolomics, but dealing with metal concentrations and especially with their binding to proteins and other molecules.


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  1. ^ Soxhlet, F. Die gewichtsanalytische Bestimmung des Milchfettes, Polytechnisches J. (Dingler's) 1879, 232, 461
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