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Cool Tools Used in High-Performance Liquid Chromatography Courses

May 24, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 204

Beginner high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) courses aren't the kind of classes that can be taken online. Introductory-level students need hands-on experience with the wide range of equipment used in chromatography labs. It is the only way to prepare for a future as a lab technician.

A lab technician?

HPLC courses prepare students for a chemistry-based career separating compounds into their individual components using a high pressure pump.

Graduates of HPLC programs fill a crucial role in our society, testing the water, food and medication we ingest.

So what are some of the tools you might see in HPLC courses?

HPLC classes teach students how to use a wide variety of equipment, including:

  • syringes
  • tubing
  • injection valves
  • ferrules
  • flange fittings
  • autosampling vials

For each piece of equipment, a seemingly endless array of accessories

For each tool, there is a seemingly endless choice of accessories. Students in high-performance liquid chromatography courses must learn to distinguish between different kinds of syringe filters. Non-aqueous samples call for a certain kind of filter, aqueous samples call for another kind (cellulose acetate). Injection valves require injection valve loops, and so on!

Graduates of HPLC courses, AKA connoisseurs of tubing

Students in HPLC programs will learn to distinguish between the different types of HPLC tubing. Depending on what the tubing is made of, it can kink or bend, it can be used with all solvents or not with those containing metal ions, it can tolerate a lot of pressure or very little, etc.

Graduates of HPLC courses, AKA connoisseurs of injectors

HPLC programs must also prepare students to evaluate the differences between the different kinds of injectors used in chromatography. Some are valued for their precision, others for their efficiency.

Graduates of HPLC courses, AKA connoisseurs of pumps

Graduates of HPLC courses must also be ready to distinguish between a wide variety of pumps, including in-constant-pressure pumps, reciprocating piston pumps and syringe type pumps.

Graduates of HPLC courses, AKA connoisseurs, period

Ideally, high-performance liquid chromatography courses should provide students with guidance in choosing the best, most cost-efficient system for the task at hand, whether pharmaceutical testing or food testing. As they progress in their studies, students may learn to distinguish between columns, degassers, autosamplers and various sterilization technologies.

What do classroom set-ups look like in HPLC courses?

Students of high-performance liquid chromatography programs may have access to an HPLC testing station that includes a data station, a pump, a valve for injections, a loop that connects to a column and a detector interface.

Prospective students who are eager to see the inside of a classroom laboratory should contact a school near them. Most schools that offer high-performance liquid chromatography courses offer open houses and guided tours, to give prospective students a chance to see the kind of equipment that they could be working with, in school and after.

Visit AAPS for more information on HPLC courses.

Rima Hammoudi is a copywriter at Higher Education Marketing, a leading Web marketing firm specializing in Google Analytics, Education Lead Generation, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Mobile SMS Alerts, Social Media Marketing and Pay Per Click Marketing, among other Web marketing services and tools.

Source: EzineArticles
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