Manille Lykin
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Hey fellow chemists!

I am starting my personal statement and really wanted to dive deep into the topic of analytical techniques I particularly wanted to talk about the future of analytical Chem. Do you think we could have different techniques/machines in the future than what we have today (e.g not something like IR, NMR, TOF). If so, what do you think it could be?

Could anyone briefly describe the future of analytical chemistry in a nutshell (any news articles with something in the works rn regarding analytic al chem would be fantastic!)

Thanks sm
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TypicalNerd
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(Original post by Manille Lykin)
Hey fellow chemists!

I am starting my personal statement and really wanted to dive deep into the topic of analytical techniques I particularly wanted to talk about the future of analytical Chem. Do you think we could have different techniques/machines in the future than what we have today (e.g not something like IR, NMR, TOF). If so, what do you think it could be?

Could anyone briefly describe the future of analytical chemistry in a nutshell (any news articles with something in the works rn regarding analytic al chem would be fantastic!)

Thanks sm
Interesting question.

I’s probable that more analytical techniques will be discovered in future, but I reckon in the near future, rather than looking at new analytical techniques, research will focus more on improving current ones. Solid state NMR (a current area of the Uni of Warwick’s research) is one good example.

I’d actually make a point of looking at the current areas of research that the unis you are applying to are doing and see if you can spot any particularly interesting under analytical chemistry, then mention (without naming any universities) something about these in the personal statement.

As for the history of analytical chemistry, I’d be careful what you mention in your personal statement. You have a fixed allowance on the number of words in the personal statement, so at least try to focus on what would make you a good fit for studying chemistry at university, rather than going into depth about how analytical chemistry has changed over the years. Though, seeing as you are interested, here’s virtually everything I was able to find online/remember within a few minutes:

The first instrumental analysis technique devised appears to be flame emission spectroscopy, discovered in c. 1860 by Robert Bunsen and Gustav Kirchoff.

Mass spectrometry appears to be the next major innovation. Henry Moseley in 1914 claimed to have used mass spectrometry to have determined the relative atomic masses of each of the elements known at the time.

The phenomenon NMR was discovered in 1944 and in 1951 the ‘low resolution’ proton NMR spectrum of ethanol was first generated on an oscilloscope trace. Roughly about the same time, you also had IR spectra being generated for the first time.

From the 1970’s, techniques moved more towards biological molecules. So around this time, things like HPLC would have become more popular.
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McGinger
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Useful websites :
What can you do with a Chemistry degree - https://www.prospects.ac.uk/careers-...gree/chemistry
Careers examples from Uni of Bath - https://www.bath.ac.uk/campaigns/whe...bath-take-you/ and Uni of Liverpool - https://www.liverpool.ac.uk/chemistr...istry-careers/
Oxford podcasts - https://podcasts.ox.ac.uk/units/department-chemistry
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Manille Lykin
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(Original post by TypicalNerd)
Interesting question.

I’s probable that more analytical techniques will be discovered in future, but I reckon in the near future, rather than looking at new analytical techniques, research will focus more on improving current ones. Solid state NMR (a current area of the Uni of Warwick’s research) is one good example.

I’d actually make a point of looking at the current areas of research that the unis you are applying to are doing and see if you can spot any particularly interesting under analytical chemistry, then mention (without naming any universities) something about these in the personal statement.

As for the history of analytical chemistry, I’d be careful what you mention in your personal statement. You have a fixed allowance on the number of words in the personal statement, so at least try to focus on what would make you a good fit for studying chemistry at university, rather than going into depth about how analytical chemistry has changed over the years. Though, seeing as you are interested, here’s virtually everything I was able to find online/remember within a few minutes:

The first instrumental analysis technique devised appears to be flame emission spectroscopy, discovered in c. 1860 by Robert Bunsen and Gustav Kirchoff.

Mass spectrometry appears to be the next major innovation. Henry Moseley in 1914 claimed to have used mass spectrometry to have determined the relative atomic masses of each of the elements known at the time.

The phenomenon NMR was discovered in 1944 and in 1951 the ‘low resolution’ proton NMR spectrum of ethanol was first generated on an oscilloscope trace. Roughly about the same time, you also had IR spectra being generated for the first time.

From the 1970’s, techniques moved more towards biological molecules. So around this time, things like HPLC would have become more popular.
This is absolutely fantastic, amazing, amazing, thanks so much! Yeah, the solid-state NMR is definitely going into my personal statement!!!!!
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TypicalNerd
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Another random point I thought of that may be useful.

Seeing as analytical chemistry is apparently your main point of interest, it may be worth mentioning tautomers (I’d read up on them first) and suggesting that they could result in misleading spectra for some molecules, which could fit in nicely to your interest in the future of analytical chemistry, as surely ways to overcome any confusion may be a point of future research.

https://encyclopedia.pub/entry/307
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