First lab visit at CLRI

Since my internship started, I’ve been bored by the factory floors and cramped rooms filled with people and computers.
CLRI is largely comprised of dilapidated buildings – it’s run by the government. The interiors are brought up to some distant version of modernity and the exteriors are neglected. Nevertheless, they are renovating some sections. The one building in exceptional state is the environmental laboratory. That was where I spent the greatest part of today. It was wonderful. The faculty were all youngsters and hence the mood in the lab was upbeat.
Chemistry laboratories are always awesome to me. I’ve loved chemistry labs right from the damp, dark dungeon in my school. But this one was filled with things I didn’t know and people who were ready to teach.
The experiments I witnesses were estimation of chemical oxygen demand, estimation of total Kjeldahl nitrogen, estimation of total nitrogen and estimation of sulphide by iodometry. They’re all standard procedures for a chemist. They were testing samples obtained from a chemical reactor that treated sewage by oxidising the organic materials present in it. The tests were run on hourly samples to plot the concentration of various elements that are parameters of safe water.
I totally want to spend more time in such labs.

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