image description

Microchemical Methods (1270A)


Course schedule: 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Monday – Thursday, and 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Friday

A practical, problem-solving approach is emphasized and even analysts with access to advanced microanalytical instruments will benefit from these techniques and methods. Students are introduced to microchemical reactions conducted on microscope slides, in capillary tubes, and on the tips of fibers. Once the basic techniques have been developed they are applied to the elemental and chemical characterization of inorganic and organic compounds, polymers, metals and complex substances. The identification of real life unknowns is emphasized.

(See course 1422 for advanced study of FT-IR microspectroscopy and course 1402 for SEM, including X-ray elemental analysis).

Prerequisite: course 1201 or equivalent

Day 1
• Principles of micro chemical analysis
• Review of optical crystallography
• Manipulation, solubility testing, decantation and the silver group

Day 2
• Crystal tests for cations
• Metals, alloys and minerals
• Study of unknowns

Day 3
• Anions
• Identification of halides, phosphates, nitrogen and sulfur anions
• Problems in organic microchemical analysis
• Preliminary examination of organic compounds

Day 4
• Identification of organic compounds
• Microchemical tests for complex substances
• Practice in applying techniques

Day 5
• Final unknowns
• Literature in the field
• Suggestions for further work
• Open discussion and closing remarks