After the successful colorimetry outreach in Kathmandu last year, RCP was back in Kathmandu this year too (October 2019) for another outreach event. Similar to the last year, RCP brought the colorimeter kits from the University of Bristol, UK. However, this year the colorimeter instruments were purchased using the Natural Environmental Research Council grant NE/P013104/1 pathways to impact fund with the aim of providing them to Kathmandu University on a long-term loan. A training program was organised to familiarize lecturers from the School of Chemical Science and Engineering, Kathmandu University (KU), with the colorimeter instrument. The training involved explanation of the Beer’s law principle, linearity of calibration curves, use of the instrument and possible activities with the school students.
The initial training was followed by experiments along with grade 10 students from Loyola secondary school in Purano Baneshwor, Kathmandu. Four lecturers lead groups of 5 to 7 students with a set of experimental kits involving a colorimeter, copper sulfate solution, glassware and distilled water for dilution. Each group were explained principles of dilution, Beer’s law and were asked to measure absorbance of 3 to 4 diluted solutions using red, blue and green LEDs in the colorimeter. The students were then asked to plot the absorbance measurements as a function of the diluted concentrations to obtain a calibration curve. All the groups obtained a straight calibration curve! They were explained importance of the calibration curve and how it could be used to measure concentration of copper sulfate in the field measurements. The main aim of this year’s event was to make the lecturers at Kathmandu University proficient in using the colorimeter instrument and independently organize outreach events in future in secondary schools across Kathmandu.
RCP was interviewed by a local TV program ‘Open Mic’ regarding the outreach program and here is a video link: