Lab Report Preparation Guidelines—Ir Spectroscopy, General Unknowns, Ch 315.

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Lab Report Preparation Guidelines—IR Spectroscopy, General Unknowns, CH 315.


State in simple terms what the purpose was. Since one is issued a vial of an unknown substance, the “purpose” as such is not exactly in doubt. The object is simply to state that obvious purpose, as well as summarize (a comma-ed list here is fine) the various means, tests, so forth that are performed in the approximate order that they are performed.

(approximately 10 points)


There is a need in 315 to cover the exact methods used, since at this point (CH 315) the notion of how to do such things as IR spectra, refractive index, and boiling point really need repeating. Distillation particularly.

Therefore, a review of the methods used, in a nice flowing paragraph narrative, should be fine. Only if there are chemical and/or qualitative tests performed during the experiment day (as there are when the aldehyde/ketone unknown comes around) will there need be any explanation of how something was done.

In the case of a specific chemical test (Tollens, etc) the relevant balanced reaction equation(s), as well as the result (“positive for”, “negative for” with supporting observations) must be included here.

(approximately 10 points)


Here is where the actual reporting of data gathered, in support of an identity to be defended/justified in “Discussion” need to be properly recorded.

In no particular order, and in context, that is to say complete sentences except where noted below, summarize briefly such things as:

1). Boiling point range, and comment on observed differences based on the later proposed identity of the unknown compound. 2). Refractive Index, with shown correction to 20°C, and a brief comparison to a proposed unknown. 3). Infra-red spectral data, with the major bands reported as A TABLE with this format:

Frequency (cm1)AssignmentCharacteristic
1770-1740 cm1C=O stretchs, br
3200-3000 cm1C-H...
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