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Benefits of Glass Lab Apparatus
Lab ware items such as conical flasks, petri-dishes, round bottom flasks, pipettes, measuring cylinders, beakers, burettes, volumetric flasks, vials, test tubes, and more are either made of plastic or glass. Production of plastic lab equipment proceeds centuries of people using glassware lab equipment. The types of glass that are used to manufacture glass lab ware are soda-lime and borosilicate glass. Glass lab instruments have these benefits.
You may argue that glassware breaks quickly thus causing losses to the lab operators, but when you take care of them and take precautions, these lab ware items can last for a considerably long time. Understand the thermal shock and mechanical stress of glass lab ware and take precautions not to go beyond that by sticking to safety measures to protect them from breaking. For example, sulphuric acid needs to be stirred and cooled before it is used and the appropriate vessel is required for the reaction. If you want to risk breaking volumetric instruments, heat them on heating plates. When hot plates are used to heat glass beakers and flasks, they can withstand the heat and not break. Volumetric flasks and graduated cylinders are not appropriate for exothermic reactions. Glass instruments cannot withstand sudden temperature or pressure changes because that makes them break.
Glass lab ware have high clarity that enhances visibility to enable you to see, measure and recording volumes clearly and accurately. Cleaning lab glass instruments is easy so that they remain visible for you to measure and record liquids and solids accurately. Use cold water to clean protein residue from the apparatus. The glass lab ware should then be mixed in a disinfectant solution that has been mixed at a correct dilution ratio. Use a brittle brush to scrub off materials adhering to the glass gently. The apparatus need to be soaked in a disinfectant solution that has been mixed at a correct dilution ratio again but do not use the solution that you used before, or use an ultrasonic bath. Rinse the detergents from the glassware using deionized water. Drain the water from the apparatus by placing them on a rack or a hot air oven, in a clean environment.
These lab items are compatible with the majority of common chemicals that are used in the lab. You can use or store them in environments that have moisture, warmth, and oxygen because glass is not susceptible to rusting and they also react minimally with water and acids. When the reaction between water or acids with glass occur, a layer of silica gel forms on the surface of the glass to prevent further reaction. When the reaction is between hot phosphoric acid and hydrofluoric acid and glass the layer will not form.