11. Applications of chemistry - 11.2 Applications of analytical chemistry

Questions in this section will focus on the techniques involved rather than the recall of examples. All necessary information about the context will be given in the question and candidates will be expected to apply their knowledge.


I Methods of detection and analysis

II Applications in chemistry and society

Learning outcomes

Candidates should be able to:

(a) describe simply the process of electrophoresis and the effect of pH, using peptides and amino acids as examples (link to 11.1 (a))

(b) explain, in simple terms, the technique of DNA fingerprinting and its applications in forensic science, archaeology and medicine

(c) describe the importance to modern medicine, and the challenges, of separating and characterising the proteins in cells (link to 11.1)

(d) outline in simple terms the principles of nuclear magnetic resonance in 1H and be able to interpret simple NMR spectra

(e) show awareness of the use of NMR and X-ray crystallography in determining the structure of macromolecules and in understanding their function (link to 11.1 (c) and 11.2 (c))

(f) state what is meant by partition coefficient and calculate a partition coefficient for a system in which the solute is in the same molecular state in the two solvents

(g) understand qualitatively paper, high performance liquid, thin layer and gas/liquid chromatography in terms of adsorption and/or partition and be able to interpret data from these techniques

(h) explain the concept of mass spectroscopy, deduce the number of carbon atoms in a compound using the M+1 peak and the presence of bromine and chlorine atoms using the M+2 peak and suggest the identity of molecules formed by simple fragmentation in a given mass spectrum (see also core syllabus, section 1 (c) and (d))

(i) draw conclusions given appropriate information and data from environmental monitoring (for example, PCBs in the atmosphere, isotopic ratios in ice cores).