Chromatography is a technique used to fully analyze a mixture. It allows for a detailed analysis of what goes into the mixture so that people would know exactly what is inside a particular substance. Though not many people are aware of it, chromatography is being used regularly.

Here are just a few ways that chromatography has affected our daily lives:

Emission Testing

Chromatography is among the EPA and CARB approved methods used to determine whether a person or a company has failed to meet the local emissions standards. Air pollution is one of today’s major issues. Both people and the environment are in danger when it comes to air pollution. Though there are other methods besides chromatography, they are not as accurate.

With chromatography, analysts can pinpoint how many pollutants are in the emissions. They would also be able to determine what chemicals can be found in it. Testers use this to decide whether to penalize a motorist, a factory, or a building.

Drug and Medical Testing

doctor conducting a testChromatography is also useful for testing the human body. One of the prime uses for it is for drug testing. When a person ingests drugs, those eventually pass out of their system in their urine. Urine testing with chromatography will find even the smallest particle of performance-enhancing drugs in a person’s system. This also works for illegal drugs, which is why many law enforcement agencies use it.

Chromatography tests are not just for detecting drugs. Some diseases can make your body generate various substances. Chromatography can help determine if a person is suffering from a particular disease. Postmortem tests are also used to determine whether chemical substances were involved in a person’s death.

Food Testing

People like to eat clean food. However, that can be difficult nowadays with the spread of insecticides and other substances in our food. Some unscrupulous merchants actually sell dirty food. This is where food testing comes in. Chromatography does the same job it does with drug testing: find out if there are alien substances in the mixture. The accuracy of chromatography ensures that if something inside your food is not supposed to be there, it will be detected.

For example, some meat vendors mix in various meat products in hamburgers. This is mostly because it is hard to notice it when it is fully cooked. A recent scandal had horse meat being added to the mix. With chromatography, testers will recognize and know that horse meat was added during production.

It’s not all intentional either. Sometimes, food gets contaminated along the way or they get before they are caught. In addition, chemicals that are normally undetectable to taste can be found. People can eat their food safely today, thanks to chromatography.

Considering its variety of uses, chromatography should be one of the top methods to consider if you want or need a full analysis of a substance. If you are in any industry that requires an accurate accounting of what is inside a substance, then chromatography is your best bet.