Laboratory tubes

November 1, 2021

Surely when you hear the word “laboratory” the first thing you imagine are test tubes and other similar instruments. They are the most iconic symbols to represent science and research. These laboratory elements are used to carry out analyzes, reactions and to contain chemical products.

What are they?

Each type of laboratory tube has its own characteristics. However, most are glass or plastic cylinders (Pyrex or polypropylene) with a long neck, a small diameter and an open end to insert different substances.

Some models have a cap on the open end.

Laboratory tubes are available in various sizes. The most common are those 1 to 2 cm wide and 5 to 20 cm long.

It is important to highlight that polypropylene tubes are indicated for a single use and do not withstand extreme temperature variations. In turn, tubes made of borosilicate glass can withstand the flame of a Bunsen burner.

What are they for?

They have various uses, they can be used to store a substance, perform analysis and cool chemical substances. Features vary based on tube shape, size, and material .

The tubes also serve to keep laboratory personnel safe and prevent site contamination by slowing the diffusion of vapors released during a chemical reaction.

Some tubes, such as Thiele’s tube, are used to determine the melting or boiling point of a substance.

The capillary tube is used to demonstrate the possible effects of capillarity of a substance.


  • Like all laboratory equipment, the use of these tubes requires the monitoring of safety measures to avoid risky situations.
  • The first safety measure is to keep the tube away from your face during the preparation of the chemical reaction. It should always be pointed away from the face and away from peers. If not, it can cause irritation, eye damage and burns.
  • If dangerous substances are used, it is advisable to use protective elements to avoid accidents.
  • To heat the tube it is necessary to hold it with special wooden tweezers. This can prevent burns and chemical spills.
  • They should be stored in racks, which serve as a secure support for these items.
Dr. Loony Davis5
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Born and raised in Brussels in an English family, I have always lived in a multicultural environment. After several work experiences in marketing and communication, I came to Smart Water Magazine, which I describe as the most exciting challenge of my career.
I am a person with great restlessness and curiosity to learn, discover what I do not know, as well as reinvent myself daily, someone who is curious about life and wants to know. I enjoy sharing knowledge.
This is my personal project but I also collaborate in other blogs, it is the case, the most important web on water currently exists in the US, if you are interested you can read my articles here.

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