Broad range of analytical methods

We offer a wide range of methods and develop made-to-measure solutions to meet every requirement.

Starker Analytik-Methodenverbund qualitativ wie quantitativ

The most important distinction is that between qualitative and quantitative analysis and structural analysis.

  • Qualitative analysis is about the “what?”, in the sense of “what kind of substance are we dealing with?” If it is not just a chemical compound but a mixture, then the question is “what substances are in the sample?” The basic purpose of qualitative analysis is to identify substances.
  • By contrast, quantitative analysis is all about “how much?”, in other words, how much of a substance is in a mixture (the sample).
  • Structural analysis investigates the molecular structure of a substance (the chemical structural formula or crystal structure).

Qualitative and quantitative analyses are often carried out in succession:
Ideally, you should know which substance you are determining before conducting a quantitative analysis. It is essential for a qualitative analysis that there is an adequate amount of the analyte in the sample, as appropriate to the limit of detection of the method used.

In classic chemical analysis, the analyte is separated from the rest of the sample in a “wet chemical” process such as a digestion or separation process. To conduct a qualitative analysis, reagents are then added to convert the analyte into a form in which it can be identified on the basis of a physical property such as a color change. To carry out a quantitative analysis, one of two approaches can be used. Either a precipitation reaction can be initiated, causing the analyte to form an insoluble sediment that can be gravimetrically evaluated, or a standard solution can be added that will convert the analyte, with the quantity of the analyte then determined based on the volume of standard reagent needed to achieve complete conversion.

When applying instrumental analytics methods, analysis is usually carried out based directly on an appropriate physical parameter. However, this does not mean wet chemical reactions won’t first have to be performed during sample preparation to convert the sample material into a form that is compatible with the analysis method. Many of these methods, such as chromatography, mass spectrometry (MS), spectroscopy and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), can also be used for both qualitative and quantitative determinations.

Besides their application in classic analytics, spectroscopic methods are also very important for structure elucidation, i.e. determining the structure of chemical compounds. Indeed, combining several spectroscopic methods is a very effective tool, especially in organic chemistry. X-ray structure analysis also plays an important part in clarifying crystal structures.

Methods are chosen according to the properties the sample exhibits and the information that is required, among other things. The smaller the concentration of the analyte and the more complex the composition of the sample, the tougher the demands on the performance capability of the analytical method.

Since the application areas for analytical methods can overlap and each analytical method has its own specific strengths, picking the right analytical method for a given analytical problem is a very important step. We have the necessary expertise and experience to offer you the perfect solutions. However, it is important to understand that mistakes made during the taking, transportation, storage and preparation of samples cannot be fixed, even if measurements are taken with the greatest of care and the best instruments are used.

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