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Physical Chemistry - Lab Report Example

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Primarily, the main purpose of this lab experiment involved quantitative determination of heavy metals in the brass alloy, specifically copper and lead metals. In the context of material chemistry, determining the quantitative composition of alloys is significant in evaluating…
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Physical Chemistry Lab Report
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Download file to see previous pages Technically, incorporation of lead into the brass increases the mechanical properties the alloy. On the other hand, substantial concentration of copper imparts germicidal and antimicrobial properties into the brass alloyi. In laboratory settings, methods used to quantitatively determine the amounts of heavy elements in alloys include Gravimetric analysis, Anodic Stripping Voltammetry, and Atomic Absorbance Spectroscopy among others. Each of these quantitative determination methods possesses particular advantages, setbacks, and accuracy and precision levels.
In the experiment, Atomic Absorption Spectroscopy was used to measure the amounts of lead and copper in brass. Atomic Absorption Spectroscopy is a versatile quantitative technique capable of analyzing presence of over 70 elements. Technically, this technique functions by exploiting the atomization properties in form of electronic transition of elements’ atoms in gaseous phases. After atomization, light absorption level of atoms is detected and Beer’s law of absorbance vs. concentration is used to determine the quantity of analytes in the atomized samples. Besides Atomic Absorbance Spectroscopy, the experiment employed Gravimetric analysis in the determination of lead in brass. Despite being one of the oldest methods in quantitative analysis, the gravimetric technique remains accurate and precise when used for determination of metals with insoluble salts like lead. Finally, the experiment employed Anodic Stripping Voltammetry in determination of copper. Anodic Stripping Voltammetry relies on the electric conductivity of analytes, and is specifically suited for quantitative analysis of minute traces of heavy metalsii. Subsequent sections of this lab report contain procedural steps, results and discussions pertaining to application of the three aforementioned quantitative determination techniques.
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