## Analytical Balance

Watch the movie on using an analytical balance.Analytical balances are used for very accurate, quantitative measurements of mass to the nearest 0.001 g. (Some read to 0.0001 g.) These are delicate instruments, subject to errors caused by vibration and drafts. These problems can be minimized with care and a certain amount of common sense.

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For optimum accuracy, the balance should be level. If it is not, inform the laboratory instructor, who will make the necessary adjustments. Do not lean on the bench while operating the balance. This may cause vibrations that are transmitted to the balance.To begin any measurement on the analytical balance, close the draft shield doors and press the button or control bar that turns on the balance. The display should indicate zero (0.000) g. If it does not, inform your laboratory instructor.

### To weigh a solid object that is not a reagent:

Open the draft shield door and gently place the object on the center of the pan. Close the door; the mass will be displayed. Record the mass. Never weigh solid or liquid reagents directly on the pan. Weighing paper or a container such as a beaker should be used for this purpose as described below.

### To tare a container and weigh a reagent:

Open the draft shield door and gently place the container (or weighing paper) on the center of the pan. Close the door; the container mass will appear on the display. Record it in your data table.
2
Calculate a target mass (mass of desired chemical and tare mass).
3
Open the draft shield door and remove the tared container. With the container on the bench top, dispense the chemical.
Place the container back on the balance pan and check the mass. If you need to add more chemical, remove the container from the balance and add it, then check the mass again. Repeat this process until the target mass is reached.
Close the door and record the mass from the display. Carefully remove the container from the pan and close the door when finished.One can also tare the container by zeroing the balance with the beaker or weighing paper on it. Then measure the mass of the compound directly, rather than obtaining its mass by difference. Directions for individual experiments will indicate which method is preferred. Generally, if the compound will undergo some chemical conversion in the container, then be reweighed, the method given in steps is preferred.

### A few other tips on use of the analytical balance:

Do not dispense chemicals into a container while it is on the balance pan. This prevents spills in the balance chamber, which is difficult to clean. If you spill something near the balance, clean it up.
The target mass is just that, a target. It is very difficult to dispense an exact mass of chemical. Therefore, experiments are set up to require an approximate mass, but the experimenter records the exact mass of the chemical he/she dispensed. For example:The experiment states "obtain about 0.5 g of the unknown." The student finds the tare mass of the container to be 34.568 g. The target mass for container and chemical is 35.068. The student dispenses chemical according to Step 4 above. On his last addition, he overshoots the target mass by a bit. He closes the draft shield and records a mass of 35.142 g. He calculates the exact mass of unknown to be 0.578 g and uses this value in his calculations.
If you have overshot your target mass, do not put the excess chemical back into the reagent bottle. Retain it in the experiment, as in the example above, or put it in the waste container.
If you are doing a series of measurements of the mass of an object over a period of time, perform all measurements on the same balance.
Obtain the mass of hygroscopic (water absorbing) materials quickly.

## Volumetric Glassware

In quantitative chemistry, it is often necessary to make volume measurements with an error on the order of 0.1%, one part per thousand. This involves using glassware that can contain or deliver a volume known to a few hundredths of a milliliter, or about 0.01 mL. One can then report quantities greater than 10 mL to four significant figures.Glassware designed for this level of accuracy and precision is expensive, and requires some care and skill to give best results. Four main types of volumetric glassware are common: the graduated cylinder, the volumetric flask, the buret and the pipet. These have specific uses and will be discussed individually. There are some points that are common to all types, however. These involve cleanliness and how to read volumes accurately.Cleanliness is essential to good results. Chemically clean glass supports a uniform film of water, with no hanging droplets visible. Rinse your glassware thoroughly with deionized water when you are finished with it. If you are suspicious at all, wash it before you use it as well. With some types of glassware, one "conditions" the apparatus by rinsing with a few small portions of the solution one will be measuring prior to conducting the actual work. This prevents water droplets from diluting one"s solution, and changing the concentration. More detail on how to do this will be given in the discussion of the individual pieces of glassware.All volumetric glassware is calibrated with markings used to determine a specific volume of liquid to varying degrees of accuracy. To read this volume exactly, the bottom of the curved surface of the liquid, the meniscus, should be located at the scribed line for the desired volume. It is often easier to see the meniscus if you put a white paper or card behind the apparatus. If your eye is above or below the level of the meniscus, your readings will be inaccurate due to the phenomenon of parallax. View the meniscus at a level perpendicular to your eye to avoid this as a source of error.

### TC versus TD

Some volumetric glassware bears the label "TC 20°C" which stands for "to contain at 20°C." This means that at 20°C, that flask will have precisely the volume listed inside it. If you were to pour out the liquid, you would need to get every drop out of it to have that volume. Alternatively, some volumetric glassware bears the label "TD 20°C" which stands for "to deliver at 20°C." This means that at 20°C, precisely the volume listed will leave it when the contents are allowed to drain out of the vessel. It is not necessary to get every last drop and, in fact, it is inaccurate to blow the last bit out of a volumetric pipet.

Most students are familiar with graduated cylinders, which are used to measure and dispense known volumes of liquids. They are manufactured to contain the measured volume with an error of 0.5 to 1%. For a 100 mL graduated cylinder, this would be an error of 0.5 to 1.0 mL. Measurements made with a graduated cylinder can be reported to three significant figures.

Watch the movie on using a volumetric flask.The volumetric flask, available in sizes ranging from 1 mL to 2 L, is designed to contain a specific volume of liquid, usually to a tolerance of a few hundredths of a milliliter, about 0.1% of the flask"s capacity. The flask has a calibration line engraved on the narrow part of its neck. It is filled with liquid so the bottom of the meniscus is on this engraved line. The calibration line is specific to a given flask; a set of flasks built to contain the same volume will have lines at different positions.

### Burets

A buret is a long, narrow tube with a stopcock at its base. It is used for accurately dispensing variable volumes of liquids or solutions. It is graduated in 0.1 mL increments, with the 0.00 mL mark at the top and the 50.00 mL mark near the bottom. Notice that the marks do not go all the way to the stopcock. Therefore the buret actually will hold more than 50.00 mL of solution. Burets with liquid capacities of 25.00 mL and 10.00 mL are also available.

### Pipets

Watch the movie on pipeting techniques.A pipet is designed to deliver a known volume of a liquid. Their volumes range from less than 1 mL to about 100 mL. There are several types, which vary in accuracy and in the type of task for which they are optimum.