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Question Video: Identifying the Pan of an Analytical Balance Chemistry

What is the name of the circular metal part shown on a typical analytical balance? [A] Tray [B] Weigh boat [C] Tare [D] Pan [E] Scale

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Video Transcript

What is the name of the circular metal part shown on a typical analytical balance? (A) Tray, (B) weigh boat, (C) tare, (D) pan, or (E) scale.

To identify the name of this portion of the analytical balance, let’s take a look at its uses and its parts.

An analytical balance is a digital balance that is typically held in protective housing and usually gives masses to the nearest ten thousandth of a gram. It is an extremely precise device that is most commonly used to measure the masses of solids. We can see from the diagram that the balance is held in a protective casing, which can also be called a draft shield. The draft shield protects the sample from air drafts that can affect the mass measurement. The draft shield can be opened using these small handles. This display will show the mass of substances placed on this pan.

Substances should not be placed directly on the pan, but instead in some sort of vessel like this weigh boat. The tare button, or sometimes called the zero button, resets the display to zero. This is a very convenient feature of the balance because it allows us to place a measuring vessel on the pan without its own mass being included in the mass of the substance of interest.

Now let’s have a look at the answer choices. We can see that answer choice (D) matches the name of the circular metal part we have identified for the balance. Thus, the name of the circular metal part shown on a typical analytical balance is (D) pan.

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