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The Chemical Educator

ISSN: 1430-4171 (electronic version)

Table of Contents

Abstract Volume 20 (2015) pp 120-123

An Improved Introduction to Turbidimetry for the Analytical Chemistry Lab: Determination of Chloride Ion in Sports Drinks

Dean Dziewit and Dinty J. Musk Jr.*

Department of Natural Sciences, Ohio Dominican University, 1216 Sunbury Road, Columbus, Ohio, USA 43219,
Received July 21, 2014. Accepted September 22, 2014.

Published: 7 May 2015

Abstract. Turbidimetry is an invaluable technique for quantification of many analytes, with applications in wastewater monitoring, immunology, and chemical industry, but its incorporation in the undergraduate analytical or instrumental analysis laboratory seems to be sparse. Compared to gravimetry, titration, and other techniques, turbidimetry is singularly sensitive to thoughtful and careful sample preparation. Although an experiment in turbdimetric analysis is an ideal inclusion in the instrumental analysis laboratory sequence to reinforce the need for thoughtful sample preparation, most undergraduate laboratories ignore turbidimetry altogether despite its wide applicability and the relative affordability of turbidimeters as compared to other common analytical instrumentation. To introduce turbidimetric methods in our undergraduate analytical chemistry sequence, a robust, relevant, and relatable analysis has been developed: the quantification of chloride in sports drinks by monitoring silver chloride turbidity.

Key Words: Laboratories and Demonstrations; analytical chemistry; instrumental analysis; turbidimetry; Gatorade; Powerade; lab activity

(*) Corresponding author. (E-mail:

Article in PDF format (103 KB) HTML format

Supporting Materials:

A sample student laboratory procedure handout with notes and sample calculations is available. (105 KB)

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