Beer's Law Lab

Kelsey Phelps Period 2


I believe that the purpose of doing this lab was to help us have a better understanding of Beer's Law and how it works and also how to make a solution.


Pre-Lab Questions

1- An experience that you have had with anesthesial (dentist/doctor/???) If you have never had the experience, do you foresee a future experience? I have had laughing gas at the dentist because I have high anxiety and don't trust the dentist. When I'm on it I kind of feel numb and I am a care free person.

2- What are characteristics (functions ) of an anesthesia that are desirable? It will cause you to not feel pain, you will lose a sense of consciousness , and a sense of numbness.

3- What are characteristics (functions) of an anesthesia that are not desirable (dangerous)? It is very toxic and flamable. It could cause an explosion during the surgery and it can cause the lungs to collapse. overall a dangerous tool.

In order to complete this lab you need to know some basic definitions such as:

-Anesthesia: a general loss of the senses of feeling, as pain, heat , cold , touch and other less common varieties of sensation.

-Absorbance: the capacity of a substance to absorb radiation, expressed as the common logarithm of the reciprocal of the transmittance of the substance.


In order to complete this lab you will need the following:

- Colorimeter

- Cuvette

- Water

- Anesthesia solution

- Computer

- Pipet

- Graduated Cylinder

How to make a solution

With the given percentage of solution, do the following:

- With the percentage given, fill that amount with water.

Ex: Given 30%, fill the beaker with 3 mL of water.

- Subtract that number from 10 to receive the amount of solution needed.

Ex: 10 - 3 = 7 mL of solution

Now you have your anesthetic solution.


First make sure you have the colorimeter set up on the computer and open up logger pro which is the program that is used to collect the data. Secondly, fill each cuvette 3/4 with each different solution. Everytime you place the cuvette into the colorimeter, make sure you hold it by the rigged side not the clear side. On the first test, click caliborate and than click keep. Every other solution from now on, you only have to click keep every time. After the last solution, click stop.


Post-lab questions

1-Was the concentration of Aunt Elda's anesthesia too strong? (how do you know) No it was below 40%.

2- do you have a hypothesis for the cause of her death? The anesthesia did not kill her, it must have been something to do with the surgery.

3- How did Beer's Law help you solve this case? Because we had the solution that was used for her and the tools and other examples to compare it to, to guesstimate what percentage it could have been was fairly easy.

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According to the graph and chart above, I observed that the more anesthesia solution we mixed with water the higher the absorbance was. Light is absorbed at a certain wavelength because the electrons in the chemical bonds absorb specific wavelengths of light, therefore, the more concentration there is, the more bonds and electrons there are to absorb the light and this is the cause of the increase of absorbance.

Life or Death?

According to the data, the Aunt's anesthesia was below 40 percent, which is good. The cause of her death had to be because of something that went wrong during or after the surgery and had nothing to do with the anesthesia.