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Analytical chemistry studies and uses instruments and methods used to separate, identfy, and quantify matter. In practice, separation, identification or quantification may constitute the entire analysis or be combined with another method.  Separations isolates analytes, while quantitative analysis determines the numerical amount or concentration. 

Analytical chemistry consists of classical, wet chemical methods and modern, instrumental methods. Classical qualitative methods use separations such as precipitation, extraction, and distillation. Identification may be based on differences in color, odor, melting point, boiling point, radioactivity or reactivity. Classical quantitative analysis uses mass or volume changes to quantify amount. Instrumental methods may be used to separate samples using chromatography, electrophoresis or field flow fractionation. Then qualitative and quantitative analysis can be performed, often with the same instrument and may use light interaction, heat interaction, electric fields or magnetic fields. Often the same instrument can separate, identify and quantify an analyte.

Analytical chemistry is also focused on improvements in experimental design, chemometrics, and the creation of new measurement tools. Analytical chemistry has broad applications to medicine, science and engineering.  


Dr. Kenneth Friesen - Air-Water Behavior of Hexachlorocyclohexanes (HCHs) in Lake Winnipeg

The environmental and analytical chemistry of persistent organic chemicals including environmental reactivity or persistence, photocatalytic degradation, air-water exchange, and analytical methods. Current projects involve photolytic studies of short-chain polychlorinated n-alkanes (PCAs) and synthetic polymers, air-water behavior of hexachlorocyclohexanes (HCHs) in Lake Winnipeg and LC-MS/MS analysis of fluorinated organic compounds (FOCs).

Dr. Douglas Goltz - Science of Paint

Dr. Goltz's research is primarily in the area of analytical chemistry and the science of paint that is used use in artwork. Paint usually consists of a pigment that is combined with a binding material. Many pigments consist of inorganic compounds [e.g. 2PbCO3·Pb(OH)2] . Common binding agents consist of oil, water or egg (tempera). He is currently active in a variety of projects.

Dr. Haixia Zhang - Analytical Chemistry

Dr. Zhang’s research interest is to develop innovative separation and characterization approaches, mainly based on high performance liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (HPLC-ESI MS), to characterize nutritional, antinutritional or nutraceutical compounds from Canadian prairie crops or their food products.  These compounds could be small organic molecules, lipids, peptides or proteins.  Once the workflows are established, they could be applied to a broad range of sample analysis, such as agricultural, environmental, or clinical samples.  Projects include workflow development and characterization of fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E) from prairie crops (legumes, sunflower, corn, oilseeds), and their concentration changes during storage and food processing (germination, boiling, cooking, roasting).