The department owns several UV/Vis spectrometers, including two Perkin-Elmer Lambda 25 models, one Perkin-Elmer Lambda 35 model, and three ThermoElectron Evolution 60 instruments.
A UV/Vis spectrometer can measure the amount of ultraviolet (UV) or visible (Vis) light that a compound absorbs. Such information can, in turn, be used to determine how much of a particular substance is present in a sample. Students in Analytical Chemistry (CHM 270), for example, used UV/Vis to measure the amount of iron or phosphorus in groundwater to determine if Marcellus Shale Gas Development has had a detrimental effect on streams. Non-science majors in Laboratory Excursions in Food Chemistry (Intersession) determined the amount of FD&C dyes in Kool-Aid while Introduction to Inorganic Chemistry (CHM 260) students measured the equilibrium constant of an iron complex reaction. The UV/Vis also allows our students in Biochemistry (BCH 333) to assess the kinetics of enzyme activity.