Analytical chemistry is the study of the separation, identification, and quantification of the chemical components of natural and artificial materials. Qualitative analysis gives an indication of the identity of the chemical species in the sample and quantitative analysis determines the amount of one or more of these components. The separation of components is often performed prior to analysis.
Analytical methods can be separated into classical and instrumental. Classical methods (also known as wet chemistry methods) use separations such as precipitation, extraction, and distillation and qualitative analysis by color, odor, or melting point. Quantitative analysis is achieved by measurement of weight or volume. Instrumental methods use an apparatus to measure physical quantities of the analyte such as light absorption, fluorescence, or conductivity. The separation of materials is accomplished using chromatography, electrophoresis or Field Flow Fractionation methods.
Analytical chemistry is also focused on improvements in experimental design, chemometrics, and the creation of new measurement tools to provide better chemical information. Analytical chemistry has applications in forensics, bioanalysis, clinical analysis, environmental analysis, and materials analysis.
Famous quotes containing the words analytical and/or chemistry:
“I have seen too much not to know that the impression of a woman may be more valuable than the conclusion of an analytical reasoner.”
—Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (18591930)
“...some sort of false logic has crept into our schools, for the people whom I have seen doing housework or cooking know nothing of botany or chemistry, and the people who know botany and chemistry do not cook or sweep. The conclusion seems to be, if one knows chemistry she must not cook or do housework.”
—Ellen Henrietta Swallow Richards (18421911)