Open In App
Related Articles

Analytical Chemistry

Improve
Improve
Improve
Like Article
Like
Save Article
Save
Report issue
Report

Analytical Chemists and other professionals are often looking for the answers to questions such as what are molecules? or how concentrated the solutions are? The answers to such questions are provided by the techniques and methods used in Analytical Chemistry. Analytical Chemistry is the branch of Chemistry which deals with the identification and quantification of substances and their properties. Analytical Chemistry plays a crucial role in the various scientific fields and industries as it provides methods and tools to analyze and measure the composition of matter.

This article will help you learn about the science of finding properties and compositions of matter, namely Analytical Chemistry. In addition to that, we will also explore various sub-branches within this field of study, which focus on specific matters such as food or biomolecules. Let’s delve into the world of analysis with this article on “Analytical Chemistry”.

Analytical-Chemistry

What is Analytical Chemistry?

Analytical Chemistry is a branch of chemistry that focuses on obtaining information on the chemical composition, structure, and behaviour of matter. Analytical Chemistry is a vast and diverse field that employs various techniques and tools across numerous industries and research domains. Some of the most common applications of Analytical Chemistry include environmental monitoring, food safety, forensic science, material sciences, pharmaceutical development, etc.

Analytical Chemistry Definition

Analytical chemistry is a branch of chemistry that deals with the analysis of different substances and it involves the separation, identification, and quantification of matter

Significance of Analytical Chemistry

Analytical Chemistry holds significant importance because it provides accurate and precise information about the composition and properties of substances. Here are some examples of how Analytical Chemistry is used in real-world problems:

  • Analytical chemists can test water samples for any kind of contamination.
  • Analytical chemists can identify nutritional content such as protein, carbs, fats, etc.
  • Analytical techniques are used to identify evidence to solve crime scenes such as blood, fingerprints, etc.
  • Analytical chemists can use analytical techniques to identify and quantify ingredients in new drugs.

Branches of Analytical Chemistry

Have a look at some of the main branches of Analytical Chemistry:

  • Quantitative Analysis
  • Qualitative Analysis
  • Instrumental Analysis
  • Bioanalytical Chemistry
  • Environmental Analytical Chemistry
  • Pharmaceutical Analysis
  • Food Analysis

Let’s discuss the these various different branches of Analytical Chemistry.

Branches of Analytical Chemistry

Branches of Analytical Chemistryn

Quantitative Analysis

Quantitative Analysis is the branch of Analytical Chemistry which helps us determine the exact or relative amount and concentration of chemical species in the sample. Quantitative Analysis provides accurate numerical results as various different tests such as chemical tests, flame tests and spectroscopy are used. Quantitative Analysis involves measuring the quantity of a specific chemical component in a sample and expressing the result as a numerical value.

Qualitative Analysis

Qualitative Analysis is another sub-branch of Analytical Chemistry that determines the components and chemical species in the sample without determining their exact concentrations. Unlike quantitative analysis, which provides numerical data, qualitative analysis provides information about the composition or characteristics of substances within a sample. Qualitative Analysis is done using methods such as chromatography, qualitative spectroscopy, and volumetric analysis.

Read more about Qualitative Analysis of Organic Compounds.

Instrumental Analysis

Instrumental Analysis in Analytical Chemistry determines the use of advanced scientific equipment to perform Quantitative and Qualitative Analysis of any given sample. These instruments provide high sensitivity, accuracy, and precision, making them invaluable tools for analytical chemists. Instrumental Analysis is based on various methods such as spectroscopy, chromatography, and electrochemistry.

Bioanalytical Chemistry

Bioanalytical Chemistry is another sub-brach that focuses on the analysis of biological samples, such as biological fluids (blood, urine, saliva), tissues, cells, and biomolecules (proteins, nucleic acids, metabolites). Bioanalytical Chemistry plays a major role in various fields such as biochemistry, pharmacology, biotechnology, and more.

Environmental Analytical Chemistry

Environmental Analytical Chemistry as the name suggests; utilizes tools and methods in Analytical Chemistry to focus on the detection, identification, and quantification of various chemical substances and pollutants in the environment. The primary goal of Environmental Analytical Chemistry is to monitor and assess the environmental risks of chemical species in air, water, and soil sediment and help in developing improvement strategies.

Pharmaceutical Analysis

Pharmaceutical Analysis is the application of analytical chemistry that focuses on the composition, quality, purity, and testing of pharmaceutical products. Pharmaceutical Analysis identifies and quantifies the active ingredients in drugs.

Learn about the Classification of Drugs.

Food Analysis

Food Analysis is the application of Analytical Chemistry that focuses on the study of food products. It identifies and quantifies the chemical composition, quality and safety of food products. Food Analysis helps in determining the nutritional content in protein, carbs, fats, etc.

Some Other Techniques in Chemistry

Analytical Techniques

Analytical Techniques are used to identify and quantify chemical species in a sample. Here are some of the most common analytical techniques used in Analytical Chemistry:

  • Spectroscopy
  • Chromatography
  • Mass Spectrometry
  • Electroanalytical Techniques
  • Titration
  • Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR)
  • X-Ray Spectroscopy

Let’s discuss these techniques in detail as follows:

Spectroscopy

Spectroscopy determines the interaction of matter with electromagnetic radiation. There are different types of spectroscopy that are used to identify and quantify different types of compounds such as heavy metals, pesticides and more.

Chromatography

Chromatography determines the separation and analyzing of mixtures of substances into their individual components. It is widely used in separating the environmental contaminants. Common areas where chromatography is used are pharmaceutical industry, forensic science, food and beverage industry and more.

Read more about Chromatography.

Mass Spectrometry

Mass Spectrometry is a powerful technique that is used to identify and quantify wide range of chemical species. It is widely used with chromatography technique to separate and identify chemical compounds based on their mass-to charge ratio.

Electroanalytical Techniques

Electroanalytical Techniques are a class of analytical techniques based on the interactions between electrical fields and chemical matter. This technique analyzes wide range of samples including solids, liquids, and gases.

Titration

Titration is a quantitative analytical method used to determine the concentration of an analyte by reacting it with a solution of known concentration (the titrant).

There are two types of Titration i.e.,

  • Acid-based Titration: These techniques determines the concentration of acids and bases.
  • Precipitation Titration: These techniques determines the concentration of ions in solution.

Learn more about Titration.

Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR)

Nuclear Magnetic Resonance is a powerful analytical spectroscopy technique. It studies the structure, composition, and properties of organic compounds, inorganic compounds and biomolecules. This technique utilizes the interaction between the magnetic field and specific atomic nuclei when exposed to radiofrequency radiation.

X-Ray Spectroscopy

X-ray Spectroscopy is one of the analytical techniques used to study the interaction between x-rays and matter especially for the atomic and molecular levels. It interacts with matter in variety of ways including absorption, emission, and scattering of a sample. 

Analytical Chemistry Instruments

Analytical Chemistry is performed by analytical techniques with various instruments to analyze samples, find out precise measurements and gather valuable data. Below mentioned are some of the analytical chemistry instruments each with their unique capabilities and limitations:

Instruments

Definition

Common Areas

Mass Spectrometers

Mass Spectrometers are used to separate and identify chemical compounds based on their mass-to charge ratio.They are used to identify and quantify drugs and other chemicals in crime scene evidence, environmental pollutants, metabolism of drugs, etc.

Gass Chromatographs

Gass Chromatographs are instruments used to separate and identify volatile and semi-volatile compoundsThey are used to separate and identify pesticides, herbicides, developing new drugs, volatile organic compounds, etc

Liquid Chromatographs

Liquid Chromatographs are instruments used to separate and identify chemical compounds in liquid solutionThey are used to separate and identify pesticides, herbicides, heavy metals, developing new drugs, analyzing evidence from crime scenes, etc

Atomic Absorption Spectrometers

Atomic Absorption Spetrometers are those instruments that determines the concentration of elements in a sampleThey are used to separate and identify environmental samples for pollutants, evidence samples from crime scenes, etc

NMR Machines

NMR Machines that use magnetic properties of atomic nuclei to separate and identify chemical compoundsThey are used in medical imaging fir diagnosing diseases, studies the dynamics of molecules, etc

Electrophoresis Equipment

Electrophoresis Equipment separates molecules based on their size and chargeThey are majorly used in molecular biology and biochemistry to separate DNA, RNA and proteins

UV Spectrometer

UV Spectrometers are those instruments that are used to measure the absorption of UV light by a sampleThey are used in food safety, biochemistry, material sciences, diagnosing diseases, etc

Applications of Analytical Chemistry

Check out some examples of the applications of Analytical Chemistry:

  1. Pharmaceutical Industry: In pharmaceutical industry, analytical chemistry is used to separate, identify and develop new active ingredients in drugs. This application also ensures the safety and efficacy of new drugs.
  2. Environmental Monitoring and Analysis: In environmental monitoring, analytical chemistry is used to monitor quality of air, water and soil. This application also ensures the protection of human health.
  3. Food Safety and Quality Control: In food safety and quality control, analytical chemistry is used to protect consumers from foodborne illness.
  4. Forensic Science: In the area of forensic science, analytical chemistry helps in identify and analyzing the evidence of crime scenes such as blood, footprints, fingerprints, and identifies the crime suspects.
  5. Clinical Chemistry: In the area of clinical chemistry, analytical chemistry helps in diagnosis of diseases and monitors the effectiveness of treatments.

Read More,

Sample Questions on Analytical Chemistry

Question 1: Differentiate between Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis with one example each.

Answer:

Here is a difference between quantitative and qualitative analysis:

Quantitative Analysis

Qualitative Analysis

Quantitative Analysis determines the exact amount and concentration of chemical species in the sampleQualiatitve Analysis determines the components and chemical species in the sample without determining their exact concentrations.
It gives the numerical results of thetests data.It does not provide any information on the amount of each substance present
Quantitative Analysis techniques can determine patient’s health, for example, blood cholesterol levels, amount of protein excreted in urine, etcQualitative Analysis techniques can determine different flavours present in food, smell test to identify the odour of a substance

Question 2: What are some applications of Analytical Chemistry?

Answer:

Some of the key applications of Analytical Chemistry include:

  • Pharmaceutical Industry: In the pharmaceutical industry, analytical chemistry is used to separate, identify and develop new active ingredients in drugs. This application also ensures the safety and efficacy of new drugs.
  • Environmental Monitoring and Analysis: In environmental monitoring, analytical chemistry is used to monitor the quality of air, water and soil. This application also ensures the protection of human health.
  • Food Safety and Quality Control: In food safety and quality control, analytical chemistry is used to protect consumers from foodborne illness.
  • Forensic Science: In the area of forensic science, analytical chemistry helps in identifying and analyzing the evidence of crime scenes such as blood, footprints, and fingerprints, and identifies the crime suspects.
  • Clinical Chemistry: In the area of clinical chemistry, analytical chemistry helps in the diagnosis of diseases and monitors the effectiveness of treatments.

Question 3: How are spectrometers different from mass spectrometers? Explain in brief.

Answer:

Here is a table that briefly summarizes the difference between spectrometers and mass spectrometers:

Spectrometers

Mass Spectrometers

Spectrometers are those instruments that are used to determine the interaction of matter with electromagnetic radiationMass Spectrometers are used to separate and identify chemical compounds based on their mass-to charge ratio
They are used to identify and quantify different types of electromagnetic radiation such as visible light, UVmass-to-charge light, infrared light, etc.They are used to identify and quantify drugs and other chemicals in crime scene evidence, environmental pollutants, metabolism of drugs, etc

Question 4: What are the common areas where analytical chemistry is used in forensic science?

Answer:

Here are a few of the common areas where analytical chemistry is applied in forensic science:

  • Drug Analysis: Analyze the biological samples of blood, urine, and hair at the crime scenes
  • Toxicology: Identify and quantify the poisons in biological samples
  • Ballistics: Helps in identifying the gunshot residue and other related evidence at the crime scenes
  • Fingerprint Analysis: Analyze and identify the fingerprints and footprints

Question 5: What is a Titration method?

Answer:

Titration is a quantitative analytical method used to determine the concentration of an analyte by reacting it with a solution of known concentration (the titrant). There are two types of Titration:

  • Acid-based Titration: These techniques determine the concentration of acids and bases.
  • Precipitation Titration: These techniques determine the concentration of ions in solution.

Analytical Chemistry: FAQs

1. What is Analytial Chemistry?

Analytical Chemistry is a branch of chemistry that focuses on obtaining information on the chemical composition, structure, and behavior of matter.

2. What are Two Major Parts of Analytical Chemistry?


Analytical chemistry is divided into 2 major parts i.e Qualitative and Quantitative analysis.

3. What are Objectives of Analytical Chemistry?

Some of the principle objectives of Analytical Chemistry

  • To help students gain a comprehensive understanding of the analytical methods used in chemistry.
  • Appreciate the importance of chemistry in quantitative analysis.
  • Develop problem-solving skills for analytical tasks as well as a broad understanding of the role of chemists in measurement.

4. What are theBranches of Analytical Chemistry?

The branches of analytical chemistry are:

  • Quantitative Analysis
  • Qualitative Analysis
  • Instrumental Analysis
  • Bioanalytical Chemistry
  • Environmental Analytical Chemistry
  • Pharmaceutical Analysis
  • Food Analysis

5. What are the Main Techniques used in Analytical Chemistry?

Some of the main techniques used in analytical chemistry are:

  • Spectroscopy
  • Chromatography
  • Mass Spectrometry
  • Electroanalytical Techniques
  • Titration
  • Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR)
  • X-Ray Spectroscopy

6. What is Spectroscopy?

Spectroscopy is a technique for studying the interaction of matter with light to analyze its composition, structure, and properties.

7. What is Chromatography?

Chromatography is a separation technique used to separate and analyze mixtures based on differences in the components’ distribution between a stationary and a mobile phase.

8. What is Mass Spectrometry?

Mass spectrometry is a technique for identifying and quantifying the chemical composition of substances by measuring the mass-to-charge ratio of ions.

9. What are Some Common Challenges in Analytical Chemistry?

Challenges include sample preparation, interference from impurities, instrument calibration, method validation, and maintaining precision and accuracy in measurements.

10. What is the Main Job of Analytical Chemist?

Analytical Chemist looks after all the chemical research work for different industries, government agencies or schools/universities. They are employed to conduct a laboratory research, experiments, and contribute to the work of other scientific professionals.

11. Can Analytical Chemistry be Automated?

Yes, many analytical chemistry processes can be automated using advanced instruments and software to improve efficiency and accuracy.



Last Updated : 03 Oct, 2023
Like Article
Save Article
Previous
Next
Share your thoughts in the comments
Similar Reads