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Flask : description and operation

The flask, or container useful for processing substances, is used as a reservoir with various forms. Based on truncated cone and cylindrical-shaped neck used very often in chemical laboratories.

There are different types and sizes of flasks; they usually use capacities from 10 ml to 1 l, although it is possible to get more capacious. The flask has a graduated scale with approximate volumes, and there are of different capacities. Pictured is a 100-mL flask with a 25-mL sensitivity. It has a narrow neck to prevent spillage when mixing the liquids in it. In fact, it is often used to dissolve salt with the help of room temperature or hot solvents to pass chemical reactions. They are usually made of pyrex glass to resist thermal shock during heating on thermal plates.

Commercially available are flasks from:

  • 50ml
  • 100ml
  • 150ml
  • 250ml
  • 500ml
  • 1000ml
  • 2000ml

The vessels have a conical shape, and different capacities:

  • 10
  • 20
  • 30
  • 50
  • up to 1000 ml

and a cylinder-shaped neck with a plain or satin hem. Use it to collect filter and heat solutions. They have the advantage that the solution placed on the boil (always leave it submerged in a glass bowl to avoid overheating) does not concentrate too quickly due to its shape. The narrow shape and neck allow the unspilled contents to be shaken when desired in order to avoid liquid loss through evaporation. This characteristic makes it optimal for use in titration. In microbiology they are used in the production of microbial cultures. They can be easily closed using Parafilm, a simple plastic film or cap, or a rubber one. They are made of clear glass, but also of a plastic material or made of tinted glass. Pyrex glass flasks are often configured for heating by contact with the flame of a Bunsen burner, with the help of a tripod.  

Vacuum flask

The tailed fl ask or vacuum flask, are made with a much thicker glass bulb, they also have a rubber tube placed on the side that can be used to join the flask to a vacuum pump. They are mainly used for vacuum filtration.  

Where to buy the flask

It is also possible to buy different types of flasks by accessing the following link: selling flasks of various sizes. The design of the shape of the flasks can also be of various patterns:

  • from a wide neck
  • with a small neck
  • From the neck with no end cap, but structured neck
  • With cap and neck capable of bearing heavy weights


The flasks

Variants of the classic first flask are:

  1. Vacuum flask (or codan flask) (Fig.8), which has a side connection for vacuum tube, used in Büchner filter filtration or for other vacuum filters
  2. An Erlenmeyer flask with emery cap.

  The flask was invented in 1861 by Emil Erlenmeyer. Because of this, the flask is also called Erlenmeyer’s flask. Richard Erlenmeyer, German-born chemist, known simply as Emil Erlenmeyer. He also succeeded in discovering and synthesizing many other organic chemical compounds such as:

  • isobutyric acid
  • guanidine
  • tyrosine
  • creatine

In the year 1861 he also invented the flask. He was one of the first chemists to adopt a structure formula based on a valencia concept and suggested what became a modern naphthalene structure, formed by two condensed benzene rings; and he also began to use terms such as, aromatic, referring to compounds with properties very close to that of benzene. Definition and structure of compounds such as lactic acid and hydroacrylic acid, diazonium salts, and clarify the structure of lactones. In 1880 he formulated the Beuta rule : all alcohols, in which the -OH group bonded to the carbon carrying twice the damage aldehydes or ketones (what is now called keto-enolic tautomeria). Emil Erlenmeyer was also the first to determine the existence in carbon-related chemistry of double bonds and even triple bonds.

Vacuum flask or tailed flask

If one connects the tailed flask with a vacuum pump (which is usually a water pump), a very fast filtration is performed by which the liquid flows through a filter, during which time the body settles on the filter. The size of the funnel should be related to the amount of sediment, to collect, and when, at any rate, it should overlie the surface area that filters entirely. A very similar funnel, but one without filter paper, can be made simply of glass, but using a porous bottom Buchner filter The name comes from chemist Ernst Büchner (1850 – 1924) Buchner filter ( porcelain filter funnel with a flat bottom of openings and strong walls but is also available in glass or plastic. Inside the bottom of the funnel, leaning against the injection wall, a disk made of a moistened filter paper  is used and should be of a size that touches the edge of the filter. Vacuum pump, usually water pump, connected via a rubber hose in the side slot located on the flask. In these situations it is also possible to have very fast filtration by taking advantage of the effects of sucking. A more energetic solution than traditional filtration using gravity: where the liquid not only passes inside the filter and drips into the flask, while the included solid phase is deposited on the filter. Thus, in addition to an obvious relative advantage in speed, the result of filtering liquid otherwise difficult or ineffective to separate.

Buchner filter funnel

FIGURE 9 – Buchner’s filter funnel.

Tripod and metal immersion with refractory

Fig. 10- Tripod and metal immersion with refractory metal support tripod, used in chemical laboratories with the function of supporting glasses, flasks and porcelain crucibles subjected to heating by Burner. On these supports, there are square-shaped metal mantles, which are made of a weave of iron wires, used to heat glass containers.  

Chemical flask

Chemical flask

Online, Glass, Graduated

Coded Beuta

Coded Beuta

Price, Description, Filtration

Vacuum flask

Vacuum flask

Price, Filtration

Graduated flask with stopper

Graduated flask with stopper

Glass, With Emery Stopper

Different types of flasks

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