Growing Green

Volume 9 Issue 3 | April 2014

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Cover Story

Featured Articles


Editor's Buzz

Eco Friendlier

Though they say this winter on the east coast was NOT the longest or snowiest on record, I’m hard pressed to believe it. The stubborn patch of snow I’m looking at outside my office window indicates otherwise and shows absolutely no sign of melting...

Business Management

Managing Your Chemical Inventory

As with any other organization, successful management of your laboratory entails a significant deal of business strategy and savvy.

Customer-Centered Negotiations

Negotiating skills can make the difference between disappointment and great joy in dealing with others to get what you need….and what you want.

Leadership and Staffing

Culture Confidential

As a manager in a lab environment, have you ever thought about changing jobs? Have you ever wanted a better opportunity? Have you ever wanted more satisfaction from the work you do every day?

Ask the Expert

Innovations in Imaging and Microscopy

Nongjian Tao, PhD, director of the Center for Bioelectronics and Biosensors at Arizona State University’s Biodesign Institute and professor in the School of Electrical, Computer, and Energy Engineering, talks to contributing editor Tanuja Koppal, PhD, about a new technique called plasmonic-based electrochemical microscopy (P-ECM) developed in his lab for imaging localized chemical reactions from single nanoparticles. He talks about the advantages of this technique when compared to conventional optical microscopy and scanning electrochemical microscopy (SECM) and its potential uses in diverse areas.

Products in Action

Integrated Laboratory Informatics: Thermo Scientific Lab Execution System

Analytical and QA/QC labs, under ever-increasing pressure to improve time to market, ensure compliance and realize cost savings, now have an all-inclusive informatics solution that gives them complete control over their methods and Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) without having to purchase, integrate and validate software from multiple vendors.

Lab Health and Safety

Gowning Around

Recommended procedures for donning and doffing PPE for cleanrooms and containment labs

Lab Health and Safety Tips

Product Focus

Product Focus: Evaporators

Learning to use evaporation starts very early in chemistry. For students, the process takes a very simple approach, maybe just putting a solution in a beaker over a flame and waiting. That technique, though, doesn’t provide the sophistication, control, or throughput that advanced techniques require. Consequently, scientists can use dedicated evaporators.

Product Focus: Microplate Handlers

Microplate handlers are the robotic “glue” that unifies operations around a microplate workflow. The evolution of robotics and software has caused a “democratization” of lab automation in general, and microplate handlers in particular.

Product Focus: Microwave Digesters

When preparing a sample for analysis that requires high temperature and pressure in an acidic environment, a scientist selects microwave digestion for the process. This attracts scientists from an extraordinarily large range.

Product Focus: TOC Analyzers

Total organic carbon (TOC) analyzers present a rapid, efficient measure of the carbon contamination content of public drinking water and ultrapure water for lab operations.

Research-Specific Labs

Perspective On: An Environmental Lab

“Is my water safe to drink?” Getting the answer to that question is Russell Leu’s main goal as section supervisor of the environmental laboratory in the Montana State Department of Public Health & Human Services (DPHHS).



The pros and cons of high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) compared with ultra-high performance LC (UHPLC) are by now the stuff of legend.

Laboratory Technology

April 2014 Technology News

This month we highlight vendors who will be exhibiting at the 114th general meeting of the American Society for Microbiology (asm2014) and Experimental Biology (EB 2014). 

Products in Action

Alexa Fluor® Conjugated Secondary Antibodies for Fluorescent Western Blotting

Fluorescent western blotting is a powerful imaging technique which facilitates accurate protein quantification and multi-color analysis.  At Abcam, we listened to the demands of our customers, and generated high quality Alexa Fluor® 680/790 conjugated secondaries, to a large number of target species, for fluorescent western blotting.  As a result of this diversity and minimal spectral overlap of Alexa Fluor® 680 and 790, the reagents are ideal for multi-color analysis; furthermore customers can be reassured of the quality as Abcam publishes QC data for each individual product within the range.


2014 CO2 Incubator Survey Results

CO2 incubators are designed to copy a cell’s natural environment with a relative humidity of around 95 percent, a temperature of 37°C and a pH of 7.2 to 7.5. They are most common in biology labs performing tissue or cell culture and are used in any process where cells need to be cultured for a few hours or many weeks or where cells need to be expanded or maintained.

2014 Homogenizers Product Survey

Turning a sample into a suspension—the essence of homogenizing—occurs in a wide range of laboratory applications. In life science and clinical research, scientists often homogenize tissue samples for various analytical studies.

Maintenance Matters

Maintenance Matters: Baths & Chillers

Because baths and chillers are such a basic piece of laboratory equipment, it’s easy to put them in a corner and forget about them. But, as with other instruments, maintaining your bath or chiller is extremely important.

How it Works

How Easy Oil Changes for All Rotary Vane and Hybrid Vacuum Pumps Work

Problem: Rotary vane, or oil-based, vacuum pumps, are a common piece of equipment found in most labs. A vacuum pump is an accessory used with equipment such as freeze dryers, vacuum concentrators, glove boxes, and vacuum ovens. Just as in your car, the oil in a rotary vane pump needs to be changed periodically in order to run at its optimum. The ramifications of not doing regular oil changes is poor vacuum and seizing up the pump’s internal components, which can destroy an expensive pump.

Products in Action

Need To Reduce Energy Costs? Siemens Helps Laboratories Take Control

When Wayne State University’s team began Phase II of its Chemistry building renovation, it was stumped by a seemingly simple question. Use a single blade damper terminal or a Venturi air valve technology to control its laboratory ventilation and exhaust system?
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