Paper chromatography

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A separation technique that uses a sheet of absorbent paper as the base. A drop of a liquid containing the unknown mixture is placed near one end of a strip of paper. This end is immersed in solvent up to but not touching the dried drop. As the solvent wicks up the paper, it selectively carries components from the mixture and redeposits them at different points. Comparison of the position of the resultant depositions with correspondingly analyzed references can be used to identify many materials. Examples of absorbent paper are paper towels, filter paper, coffee filters, blotting paper, etc.

Synonyms and Related Terms

PC; Papierchromatographie (Deut.); chromatographie sur papier (Fr.);

Resources and Citations

  • Richard S. Lewis, Hawley's Condensed Chemical Dictionary, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 10th ed., 1993

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