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What is chromatography and why it is used?

Last updated date: 20th Jun 2024
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Hint: The term chromatography often appears when we are discussing the separation of two liquid or solid mixtures dissolved in a suitable solvent. The term chromatography is self-explanatory and we can say that it does involve plotting data on a graph. Based on this you can make a concise idea and explanation about chromatography and its uses.

Complete step by step solution:
Chromatography is an important biophysical technique that helps in separation, identification and purification of a compound from the given mixture.
Mikhail Tswett, a Russian botanist coined the term chromatography in the year 1906.
Chromatography is mainly based on the principle where molecules in the mixture when applied onto a surface or a solid, the fluid stationary phase separates from each other with the help of the mobile phase provided by the solvent.
Based on the difference of their movement, some components of the mixture stay longer in the stationary phase and move slowly on the column. On the other hand, some components move rapidly on the chromatography column.
The type of interaction between the stationary phase, mobile phase and substances contained in the mixture is the determining factor for the separation of molecules.
Chromatography is mainly used for the quantitative as well as qualitative analysis of the different components present in the mixture.

Note: It is important to understand that chromatography is not just limited to the separation of two simple compounds or substances. Ion exchange chromatography is a type of chromatography that allows us to separate ions and polar molecules based on their affinity towards the present ion exchangers.