Published on June 26, 2012, by in Chemistry, Internships, Research.

WFU, Wake Forest University, Chemistry, Research, Lab, Experiential LearningGlad you checked back with me to learn about my Plan B. In my last update, I was having trouble with maintaining constant current on the Bio-Rad CE. After talking with Dr. Colyer, we decided to make the switch to another CE instrument in the lab. The goal was to test my samples and method on the Beckman-Coulter instrument and compare to the Bio-Rad…if we got reproducibility, and then there was nothing wrong with the Bio-Rad, but if we got different data, well you understand.

At the helm of the Beckman, it was time to learn all about the software package, how the instrument is setup, make a new capillary specifically for the Beckman cartridges, and much more. Just as with the Bio-Rad…I made the capillary 50μm X 30cm, filled the buffer and solution vials, and created my methods in the software. First and foremost the capillary had to be conditioned (approx. 1.5 hours).

WOW…I finally began to see results from my separations! Now that things are looking better, I began two tests: (1) Injection Pressure – change the injection pressure where as pressure increases so should the response, (2) Voltage – change the separation voltage where as voltage increases the response should appear earlier in time. In the pressure test, 10, 20, 30, and 40 psi-sec methods were tested while in the voltage test, 10, 15, and 20 kV methods were tested. This created a lot of data and graphs to analyze.

Albert Einstein said, “If we knew what is was we were doing, it would not be called research, would it?” I hope you will check back soon for another update from the lab…now I must get to analyzing the data and charts to figure out where to go next!