When it comes to laboratory work, the choice of tools is crucial. Among the array of equipment, platinum dishes have carved a niche for themselves. These dishes, known for their high melting point and resistance to corrosion, have become a staple in many laboratories worldwide. Let’s delve deeper into the world of platinum dishes for the laboratory.
What are Platinum Dishes?
Platinum dishes are shallow, flat-bottomed containers made from platinum, a precious and highly durable metal. They come in various sizes, shapes, and depths to accommodate different laboratory needs. The use of platinum dishes in a laboratory setting is not a new concept. These dishes have been used for decades due to their unique properties that make them ideal for various laboratory applications.
The choice of platinum is not arbitrary. Platinum is a rare, naturally white metal known for its remarkable resistance to corrosion and oxidation. This makes it perfect for use in environments that are highly corrosive or that involve high temperatures. Platinum has a high melting point (1,768.3 degrees Celsius) and is non-reactive, which means it won’t interfere with the chemical reactions occurring within it. Moreover, it is highly durable and can withstand repeated use over a long period without degrading.
Applications of Platinum Dishes in the Laboratory
Platinum dishes are versatile tools in the laboratory. They are commonly used in analytical chemistry for processes like gravimetric analysis, where a substance is heated to high temperatures to remove water or other volatile impurities. The high heat resistance and non-reactive nature of platinum make it ideal for this purpose.
In addition to this, platinum dishes are used in the preparation and manipulation of samples in various scientific fields, including materials science and biological research. They also find use in the casting of small, high-quality metal parts in metallurgical laboratories.
The Downside: Cost
While platinum dishes are incredibly beneficial for laboratory work, they do come with a significant drawback: their cost. Platinum is a precious metal, and its rarity contributes to its high price tag. For many laboratories, especially those operating on a tight budget, the cost of platinum dishes can be prohibitive.
However, considering the durability and longevity of platinum dishes, they can be viewed as a long-term investment. With proper care, these dishes can last for years, making them a cost-effective choice in the long run.
In conclusion, platinum dishes for the laboratory are an invaluable tool due to their exceptional characteristics. Their high heat resistance, non-reactive nature, and durability make them suitable for a wide range of laboratory applications. Despite their high initial cost, their longevity and durability make them a worthwhile investment for any laboratory. The next time you step into a laboratory, take a moment to appreciate the humble platinum dish and the pivotal role it plays in scientific advancements.