Organic Chemistry

Organic Chemistry Workflow

DWK Life Sciences manufactures and supplies one of the most comprehensive ranges of laboratory glassware, plasticware and accessories available to assist and support the work of organic chemists around the world. The DWK range includes high quality products that are designed to enhance and simplify every stage of the organic chemistry workflow from sample preparation through to cleaning down your glassware.


Sample Preparation

Sample preparation in organic chemistry can be as varied as ensuring you have clean, dry glassware to accurately weighing sensitive reagents into an appropriate container and purifying reactants and solvents, in some cases in a time sensitive manner.

Apparatus Preparation

In this basic but critical step, the apparatus is prepared for the reaction. Using the correct apparatus for your reaction and ensuring its safe assembly can make the difference between the perfect reaction and a nightmare scenario. Choosing the right joint type is critical in ensuring a leak-free seal whilst adequately securing the setup with joint clips and clamps is important for safely securing the assembly.


The reaction can take minutes to hours to complete and constant attention must be maintained in case of stalling, product decomposition or no reaction at all. Stirring continuously throughout the experiment is important in addition to monitoring the reaction progress by TLC, GC or NMR. When complete, the reaction is quenched.


The isolation of the raw product is the goal of workup and is achieved, for example, by filtration, extraction, distillation or pH precipitation. The workup is very crucial and can be simple, such as the removal of the solvent, or more complicated for certain compounds, e.g. volatile, water-soluble, charged at high or low pH or unstable. In either case, it requires precise mastery of the working methodology to achieve the best possible product yield.


Analytical methods such as NMR, IR and mass spectroscopy as well as HPLC and GC are used to obtain characterisation data for product identification. This first characterisation step of organic compounds is often a 1H NMR spectrum. This determines whether the reaction was successful and complete and whether the desired product needs further purification. The complete characterisation, especially of complex organic compounds, requires a variety of different analytical techniques.

Cleaning Down

Clean glassware is essential in organic chemistry. Over time, dirty glassware becomes more difficult to clean and ground glass stoppers can freeze, therefore, immediate cleaning is a must. This includes degreasing ground glass joints and rinsing glassware with an appropriate solvent to remove attached substances.