TLC, patience, pigments.
Yesterday I worked on using thin layer chromatography (TLC) to separate the pigments in the two species of Algae I am working with for my experiment. The concept of chromatography is that a solvent dissolves the pigments and then by capillary action rises slowly along the TLC strip. There are several factors that determine how far the pigments will move on the TLC strip. Solubility in solvent; the greater the solubility the further the pigment will travel. Molecular size/weight the lighter the pigment the further it will travel. Polarity/Hydrophobicity, H-bonding, the more similar the bonding between the solvent and the pigment the further it will travel. and finally, adhesion. The greater the affinity of the pigment to the TLC strip the shorter the distance the pigment will travel. Using these properties pigments can be separated using this technique.
If at first you don’t succeed clear your mind at the Brewery, play board games and try again tomorrow.