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Week #8


This week in lab, we made a few changes our faithful test. Before, we added 200 µL of the sample and 2100 µL of distilled water but now we removed to distilled water and add 2300 µL of sample. From this, we found the maximum value the LWCC could reach. So, we also change the concentration of the secondary standard from 0.1mM to 0.05mM. Though we ran out of downstream Willamette River sample, the upstream Willamette River sample looked promising. It turned brown when placed in methanol!!!! Acetaminophen doesn’t turn brown, but p-aminophenol; the main breakdown product of acetaminophen; does. We intend on testing these samples for p-aminophenol as well. For this week’s Brown Bag discussion, we didn’t have a speaker so Vanessa Green spoke to us about our final presentation dates and going on a one day cruise.

Week #7- A Little Better

I’d have to admit that this week went by much better than last week. I had great success in the lab and well, I my friend said that he’s getting better.

For lab this week we tried another method to measure the acetaminophen concentration where we added ethyl acetate, sodium sulfate, sodium carbonate and Folin- Ciocalteu to my standards to create a standard curve. Unfortunately, this experiment almost failed. But, I returned to my faithful experiment and for the first time, tried it with the liquid waveguide capillary cell (LWCC) and was very successful. My r2 was 0.9989 which was so cool!! Because of this, we decided to try a sample taken from the Willamette River. We left it over the weekend to filter through the solid phase extraction. I hope that this helps us to get a good concentration of acetaminophen.

Week #6 - Dark and Sad.......

This week was also filled with more method testing. We tried a new experiment which involves even more harmful chemicals. Since acetaminophen does breakdown once entered the body, we decided that we should probably also find a way to test for the most common breakdown product (p-aminophenol). Though we redid the test several times at high concentrations; we still could not get decent absorbance readings from the spectrophotometer. When I think about it, I think that I helped turned the Needoba/ Peterson lab from a simple oceanographic lab into a seriously chemical one.

Week 5- Calm And Quiet........

This week was slow one. I succeeded in fixing the experiment which I mentioned last week and it only took me three trials and a new secondary stock solution. I have only been using the cuvettes lately because I wanted to see low of a concentration could be measured. I also started using Instant Ocean so see if it gave me a similar concentration to distilled water. My lab was very active up until Wednesday because they were preparing for the cruises. Now, it is so quiet; there is actually walking space.

Simple But Still Sweeeeet!!!

Success!!! Finally, my one of my lab methods worked. It happens to be the same one that I briefly mentioned in my previous blog but slightly alter. I worked with a spectrophotometer and compared the results when I measured the sample in a 2cm cuvette and a 200cm liquid waveguide capillary cell. The capillary cell won! It permitted more absorption to take place by allowing the sample to pass along the light source for a greater length. I presented these results in graph form on Wednesday to the other interns and the mentors so that they could critique my graph skills. On Thursday I tried another method that also failed miserably, but I have hope that trial two should show better results (or trial 3, 4, 7).

Week 3 SNOW!!!!!!!!

This week was pretty good. It mostly dealt with the NSF site visit. On Monday we watch the various speakers practiced their speeches. I have to admit that I had no idea what they were talking about but I tried to pay attention. On Tuesday, we went to the primate center to have lunch with some of their summer interns on that side of the campus. At least no one Thursday was the actual site visit. I have to say that these people asked some serious questions, but I guess that it was necessary to know exactly what a program that you fund is doing.

Week 2

This week was different. For starters, I felt my first 80°-day here. It was wonderful at first but surprisingly, I started to feel really hot. I felt like I was home again. It made me think of how weird it’s going to be when I go back home. I actually might miss the cold.

Week 1 - My project

Working At My Deck In The Lab
Working At My Deck In The Lab

This is the first time for me as a blogger so I really don’t know what to say, but here goes…...

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