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EXPERIMENT 11: QUANTITATIVE DETERMINATION OF COPPER (II) CONCENTRATION

BY SPECTROPHOTOMETRY.

Maria Isabel Salvador

1. What is the significance of the addition of ammonia to Cu (II) solutions?


Ammonia is added in order for the following reaction to proceed.
Cu2+ 2+
+ 4NH3 -> [Cu(NH3)4]
As seen in the reaction above the tetraaminecopper (II) complex is formed, this complex

gives the solution more intense blue color which allows the

spectrophotremeter to examine the solution effectively.

2. Why is the Beer-Lambert law expressed in terms of absorbance instead of transmittance?


The Beers law is expressed in absorbance because in the experiment we are to find the
concentration of Cu (II) through the amount of energy it absorbs. As seen in the
following equation:
A=abc
absorbance is directly proportional to concentration (c).

3. What are the limitatons of Beers law?


When working with the Beers law solutions must have very little concentrations, most
preferably less than 0.01 M. Solutions with higher concentrations have more solute
particles that will be packed together causing electrostatic interactions. This can change
the absorbency of the solution.

4. Why is it significant to scan over a wavelength range? Why is the analytical wavelength
used in the determination of the absorbance of the standard and sample solutions?

Scanning over a wavelength range gives us absorbance readings of varying


concentrations of solutions. With this data a graph is created in order to show the
relation of the concentration of cu(II) ions with the absorbance of the solution.

5. Why do we have to measure absorbance reading against reagent blank solutions?


The Blank solution also has an absorbance magnitude because of the cuvette and the
NH3 that it contains. The absorbance of the blank solution is measured first so that the
absorbance of the cuvette and NH 3 will be removed when measuring the absorbance of
the following solutions with Cu (II). This is analogous to the tare button on tap loading
balances.
6. What is the significance of y-intercept of your calibration curve? Discuss its deviation
from the theoretical value?
The y-intercept is the absorbance of only ammonia in the solution, in other words it is
the absorbance of the blank solution. The calculated value of the absorbance of the blank
solution is 0.0062. The deviation of this value from the theoretical value may be caused
by reactions that are undergoing in the solution such as dissociation or the establishment
of equilibrium
7. Cite other analytical applications of spectrophotometry?

Aside from concentration determination there are many other ways of applying
spectrophotometry. Such applications are detection of impurities, structure elucidation
of organic compounds, chemical kinetics, detection of functional groups, molecular
weight determination, etc.

8. What are the possible sources of errors and their effect on the calculated parameters?
When handling the cuvette only the frosted side can be in contact with human skin,
holding the cuvette on the clear smooth side will imprint fingerprints that contain oil
and dust, which will block the light that passes through. This will decrease the
transmitter of the cu(II) solution and therefore increasing the absorbance. The
concentration will also increase since absorbance and concentration are directly
proportional according to Beers law. Another source of error if laterally flipping the
cuvette, this may cause deviations in absorbance reading. Since this experiment deals
with solutions there are also the usual possible errors in solution preparation.
APPENDIX

Concentration Cu (II) vs Absorbance

Concentration of Copper (II) in ppm:


1L
2+=
( w . std . ppmCu
1000mL
V working std . sol' n)

total L of Solution
ppmC u
2.00 mL :
2500 mg 1L
2+=
( l

1000 mL
2 mL )
=100 pp m
0.05 L
ppmC u

4.00 mL:

2500 mg 1L
2+=
( l

1000 mL
4 mL )
=200 pp m
0.05 L
ppm C u

6.00 mL:

2500 mg 1L
2+=
( l

1000 mL
6 mL )
=300 pp m
0.05 L
ppmC u

8.00 mL:
2500 mg 1L
2+=
( l

1000 mL
8 mL )
=400 pp m
0.05 L
ppm C u

10.00 mL:
2500 mg 1L
2+=
( l

1000 mL
10 mL )
=500 pp m
0.05 L
ppmC u

Sample analysis:

Trial 1 &2 (same A value):


y=0.0011 x +0.0062
y=0.107
0.107=0.0011 x+ 0.0062
x=91.63636364

Trial 3:
y=0.0011 x +0.0062
y =0.106
0.106=0.0011 x+ 0.0062
x=90.72727273

Average concentration
= 91.33333 ppm