Session S60a (Wednesday, 9:30am, Thomas 102)

P671: Chemical fingerprinting: A new approach to solving the unlabelled n-bottle problem

Prem Sattsangi (Pennsylvania State University – Eberly Campus, USA)

An easy procedure to identify correct labeling of a set of five different chemicals to their respective containers has been developed. Students receive the names for a set of 5 compounds given in micro-pipets labeled as a, b, c, d, and e. Using previous experimental results, students predict the chemical fingerprint for each compound in the set.  Following this, they binary-mix the samples and record the observed chemical fingerprints.  By comparing the observed fingerprints with the predicted, a positive identification is achieved. This is an environmentally friendly micro-scale procedure that is easily completed in one lab meeting and leaves enough time for students to complete the lab-report.  Students have found the procedure straightforward and very educational.

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