|Flasks, Test Tubes and Jars|
| Flasks, test tubes and jars that are used in the microbiology laboratory are identified in these images. |
Erlenmeyer flasks provide sturdy glassware for holding bacterial cultures, chemicals etc. and can be safely autoclaved (sterilized). A side-arm Erlenmeyer flask can be used to create suction, while a screw cap Erlenmeyer flask is capped to inhibit air exchange.
Boiling flasks are made of heat-resistant glass.
Screw cap and metal test tubes provide suitable culture environments while preventing contamination from entering air. A loose cap on a screw cap test tube or a metal cap permits gas exchange while preventing microbial contamination.
Coplin jars store dye into which slides are dipped for staining.
A candle burned in the candle jar results in less oxygen and more carbon dioxide. This environment supports the growth of microaerophilic/capnophilic bacteria.
The Brewer anaerobic jar utilizes sodium bicarbonate and sodium borohydride to create anaerobic conditions. These substances are commercially available as a Gas Pak, shown inside the jar in image 10. When water is mixed with the Gas Pak, hydrogen and carbon dioxide are generated. With the aid of a palladium catalyst, the hydrogen and atmospheric oxygen combine to form water, effectively removing the oxygen and creating suitable growth conditions for anaerobic bacteria. The presence of an anaerobic environment can be confirmed by the presence of a methylene blue indicator which is blue when oxidized and colorless when oxygen is absent.