# Analytical Challenges

We live in the ever-accelerating world accustomed to getting instant answers from Google. In contrast to this, the Analytical Challenge series invites us to pause and think about some analytical problem using the old fashioned paper and pencil method. This column is not here to teach analytical chemistry but to offer glimpses of fundamental problems worth pondering over. Over the last decade the column has featured a rich variety of chemical problems often with touch of cultural relevance. Why does garlic turn blue when left in vinegar, why did Avogadro’s constant suddenly jump in its value during the cold war, and could Cleopatra really have dissolved her pearls to win her bet against Marc Antony? In addition, this column also features ‘serious’ problems with deep-rooted links to fundamental analytical chemistry. There is a variety of examples exploring the value of modern NMR techniques, problems exploring the various quantitation methods in analytical chemistry (standard additions, isotope dilution), or aspects of seemingly simple dilution of samples. We invite the readers not to be shy and spend some time pondering these problems or propose one from your own collection of interesting problems!

In cooperation with Column Editor Juris Meija we would like to invite you to participate in the Analytical Challenge, which is a series of puzzles to entertain and challenge our readers.

The special 'Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry' feature ‘Analytical Challenge’ has established itself as a truly unique quiz series, with a new scientific puzzle published on a quarterly basis.

-> **Exciting News:** the 100th Analytical Challenge was published in 2020: the Interlaboratory consensus building challenge

**Prize for the lucky winner**

Each "Analytical Challenge" provides you with the opportunity to win a prize (a Springer book of your choice up to a value of €100)... Please see below for details on how to participate!

The solution of the puzzles with the names of the lucky winners will be announced here and in one of the forthcoming issues of ABC.

**Want to participate? **

Check out the CURRENT Analytical Challenge and send us an email with the solution by Okt 1, 2022, to abc@springer.com:

->Congratulations to the winner of the **‘Data averaging challenge’**: Cristhian Paredes!

**Questions/Comments?**

Please get in touch with us in case of questions or comments on this Analytical Challenge or the journal 'Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry' in general.

**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2022**

Solution to the data averaging challenge

**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2021**

Solution to isotope delta challenge

Bisphenol A measurement challenge

Solution to bisphenol A measurement challenge

Trifluoroacetic acid NMR challenge

Solution to trifluoroacetic acid NMR challenge

Solution to the “never odd or even” challenge

**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2020**

Solution to gas weighing challenge

Solution to element crossword challenge

Interlaboratory consensus building challenge

Solution to interlaboratory consensus building challenge

Solution to Phosphine NMR challenge

**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2019**

Titration endpoint challenge

Solution to titration endpoint challenge

Lead quantitation challenge

Solution to lead quantitation challenge

Wheat beer challenge

Solution to wheat beer challenge

Elemental pub quiz challenge

Solution to elemental pub quiz challenge

**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2018**

Collision induced dissociation mass spectrometry challenge

Solution to collision induced dissociation mass spectrometry challenge

Best food reference material challenge

Solution to best food reference material challenge

Vitamin B3 mystery challenge

Solution to vitamin B3 mystery challenge

Fading lemonade challenge

Solution to fading lemonade challenge

**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2017**

Redox titration challenge

Solution to redox titration challenge

Measurement uncertainty challenge

Solution to measurement uncertainty challenge

Pink tea challenge

Solution to pink tea challenge

Through the looking-glass challenge

Solution to through the looking-glass challenge

**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2016**

Precision mixology challenge

Solution to precision mixology challenge

Mohr’s method challenge

Solution to Mohr’s method challenge

Phenylbutazone purity challenge

Solution to phenylbutazone purity challenge

Hollandaise challenge

Solution to Hollandaise challenge

Isotope amount ratio measurement challenge

Solution to isotope amount ratio measurement challenge

NMR hide-and-seek challenge

Solution to NMR hide-and-seek challenge

**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2015**

Left-handed DNA challenge

Solution to the left-handed DNA challenge

Solubility product challenge

Solution to solubility product challenge

The highest melting point challenge

Solution to highest melting point challenge

Maillard and grilled steak challenge

Solution to Maillard and grilled steak challenge

Rubbery egg challenge

Solution to rubbery egg challenge

Doubling spectroscopy challenge

Solution to doubling spectroscopy challenge

**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2014**

Blue garlic challenge

Solution to blue garlic challenge

The absinthe challenge

Solution to the absinthe challenge

Ostwald’s dilution law challenge

Solution to Ostwald’s dilution law challenge

Osmium density challenge

Solution to the osmium density challenge

Isotope dilution challenge

Solution to the isotope dilution challenge

Ariadne’s thread NMR challenge

Solution to the Ariadne’s thread NMR challenge

**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2013**

The copper pots and jam challenge

Solution to the copper pots and jam challenge

Quality assurance challenge 11

Solution to quality assurance challenge 11

Certified Reference Material recipe challenge

Solution to Certified Reference Material recipe challenge

The pycnometer challenge

Solution to the pycnometer challenge

Papal chemistry challenge

Solution to papal chemistry challenge

Angels’ share challenge

Solution to Angels’ share challenge

**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2012**

Plato’s elements challenge

Solution to Plato’s elements challenge

Bavarois challenge

Solution to the Bavarois challenge

Quality assurance challenge 10

Solution to quality assurance challenge 10

Standard addition challenge

Solution to standard addition challenge

Peptide sequencing challenge

Solution to peptide sequencing challenge

The Olympic Games challenge

Solution to the Olympic Games challenge

**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2011**

The green beans challenge

Solution to green beans challenge

Nuclear Overhauser effect challenge

Solution to nuclear Overhauser effect challenge

Hofmeister effect challenge

Solution to Hofmeister effect challenge

Radioactive Jeopardy challenge

Solution to radioactive Jeopardy challenge

Living cell spectroscopy challenge

Solution to living cell spectroscopy challenge

Molality–molarity challenge

Solution to Molality–molarity challenge

A “little western flower” challenge

Solution to “little western flower” challenge

**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2010**

Beryllium valence challenge

Solution to Beryllium valence challenge

Quality assurance challenge 9

Solution to Quality assurance challenge 9

Avogadro constant challenge

Solution to Avogadro constant challenge

Whipped egg-white challenge

Solution to Whipped egg-white challenge

The uncooked egg challenge

Solution to Uncooked egg challenge

Cleopatra’s cocktail challenge

Solution to Cleopatra’s cocktail challenge

**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2009**

Spectroscopy challenge 14

Solution to spectroscopy challenge 14

Random error propagation challenge

Solution to random error propagation challenge

Quality assurance challenge 8

Solution to quality assurance challenge 8

Mendeleyev vodka challenge

Solution to Mendeleyev vodka challenge

Quality assurance challenge 7

Solution to quality assurance challenge 7

Precision weighing challenge

Solution to precision weighing challenge

**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2008**

Spectroscopy challenge 13

Solution to spectroscopy challenge 13

Standard hydrogen electrode challenge

Solution to standard hydrogen electrode challenge

Spectroscopy blog challenge

Solution to spectroscopy blog challenge

Nascent hydrogen challenge

Solution to nascent hydrogen challenge

Isotopic abundance challenge

Solution to isotopic abundance challenge

Quality assurance challenge 6

Solution to quality assurance challenge 6

Birthday chromatography challenge

Solution to the birthday chromatography challenge**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2007**

Spectroscopy challenge 12

Solution to spectroscopy challenge 12

“Doctrine of Signatures” challenge

Solution to “Doctrine of Signatures” challenge

Half-titration challenge

Solution to half-titration challenge

Quality assurance challenge 5

Solution to quality assurance challenge 5

A chemical uncertainty principle challenge

Solution to the chemical uncertainty principle challenge

Neurochemical challenge

Solution to the neurochemical challenge

**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2006**

Quality assurance challenge 4

Solution to quality assurance challenge 4

Spectroscopy challenge 11

Solution to spectroscopy challenge 11

A geometric chemistry challenge

Solution to geometric chemistry challenge

Goldberg variations challenge

Solution to Goldberg variations challenge

Quality assurance challenge 3

Solution to quality assurance challenge 3

DNA sequencing challenge

Solution to DNA sequencing challenge

**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2005**

Spectroscopy challenge 10

Solution to spectroscopy challenge 10

Quality assurance challenge 2

Solution to quality assurance challenge 2

Mass spectrometry challenge

Solution to the mass spectrometry challenge

Quality assurance challenge 1

Solution to the quality assurance challenge 1

Spectroscopy challenge 9

Solution to spectroscopy challenge 9

Informatics and mass spectrometry challenge

Solution to informatics and mass spectrometry challenge

**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2004**

Spectroscopy challenge 8

Solution to spectroscopy challenge 8

Isotope pattern geometry challenge

Solution to isotope pattern geometry challenge

Spectroscopy challenge 7

Solution to spectroscopy challenge 7

Spectroscopy challenge 6

Solution to spectroscopy challenge 6

Chemical logic challenge

Solution to chemical logic (challenge)

Microfabrication challenge

Solution to microfabrication challenge

**ANALYTICAL CHALLENGES IN 2003**

Spectroscopy challenge 5

Solution to spectroscopy challenge 5

Spectroscopy challenge 4

Solution to spectroscopy challenge 4

Spectroscopy challenge 3

Solution to spectroscopy challenge 3

Spectroscopy challenge 2

Solution to spectroscopy challenge 2

Spectroscopy challenge 1

Solution to spectroscopy challenge 1