March 18-22, 2023
Pennsylvania Convention Center
Philadelphia, PA, USA

Lab Gauntlet
Test your lab skills on a series of short, fun, one-minute challenging lab activities. Prizes will be awarded daily for the best scores. Those who run the gauntlet will receive a t-shirt.

2023 Lab Gauntlet Challenges will be listed in January.


Lab Gauntlet 1 • Booth 3429
Find Your Flavor: Interpreting HS-SPME-GCxGC-MS Data on Jelly Beans
LECO Corporation
Jelly beans have gotten very good at hiding disgusting (or delicious) flavors beneath innocent sugar shells. Do you dare trust the results obtained with LECO’s Pegasus 4D GCxGC-TOFMS with HS-SPME to determine which jelly beans are safe to eat? Use the provided chromatograms and flavor decoders to identify the jelly beans provided and put your guesses where your mouth is—literally—by tasting the ones you deem safe.

Touchscreen Touchdown
BrandTech Scientific, Inc.
Participants will have one minute to use the NEW BRAND HandyStep Touch Repeating Pipette with touchscreen control to load a PD-Tip II, set the volume, aspirate fluid, auto-dispense into a deep-well microplate, and discard the tip, all in under a minute (specifics of volume and number of times dispensed will be determined to ensure it can be successfully completed in under a minute).

The Atom-Aim Putt-Putt Game
Participants can show off their golf skills in a challenge to complete the molecule by making the putt! Complete the H2O molecule by sinking your putt in this fun game of mini golf.

Team Acid vs. Team Base Shuffleboard Competition
Hanna Instruments
Can you neutralize your opponent? Put your shuffleboard skills to the test by joining Team Acid or Team Base in our unique pH shuffleboard challenge. Cast your pucks down the board and land anywhere on the pH scale. Beware, your competitor can “react” you out of solution and off of the board. Whoever claims the most rows wins!

The Daily Grind
Fritsch Milling & Sizing, Inc
Participants will have a whole item and will have to grind it down using our instrument to try and match it to all ready pre ground samples for comparison. They will have to choose the speed and other parameters on the instrument to achieve the end results.

Fred’s Beer Dilemma – PeCOD Challenge
Fred is a wastewater treatment plant worker who never leaves home without his 2 favourite PeCODs. He enjoys a nice cold beer at the end of a long day. His preference is a beer with a high organic content. “Gives the beer an earthy flavour,” he says. One day, Fred goes to a craft brewery and looks at the MENU. He can’t decide what he wants so he asks the OPERATION manager what she recommends. The operation manager RUNs back and grabs 2 SAMPLEs. She forgets which sample is which, but she knows one beer has a higher organic content than the other. Help Fred enjoy his preferred brew!

The participant will read a set of clues and run two samples on two different PeCODs. The PeCOD is an analytical instrument manufactured by Mantech that measures COD. The objective of the participant is to determine which sample has a higher COD value. The set of clues is disguised in a story about a wastewater worker who wants to know which beer has a higher COD value. The PeCOD will be optimized for minimum analysis time.

What’s in Your Drink?
Xylem Analytics
Join us for a hands-on lab challenge where participants will guess the pH of 1 of 5 drink options. Using our MultiLab pH meter, contestants will confirm the accuracy of their predictions and be graded accordingly. Prizes will be awarded to those brave enough to accept our challenge!

Imaging and Analysis Match Game
Match the image or data block to a real sample in the box. JEOL imaging and analysis solutions include Scanning Electron Microscopes, Transmission Electron Microscopes, NMR Spectrometry, or Mass Spectrometry. See how we can analyze or look at salt, beach sand, Flonase nasal spray, capsaicin, and more.
Lab Gauntlet 2 • Booth 2429
Perform the World’s Fastest Extraction
CEM Corporation
Participant will extract a food sample in one minute based on a colorimetric analysis.

What’s in your water?
Aries FilterWorks
As you may or may not know water is known as the universal solvent because it can dissolve more substances than any other liquid. That can be an advantage when you are preparing a buffer solution, but that same property can be detrimental by introducing unknown substances into your lab work. In our 60 second challenge, we will demonstrate the difference between pure water and the two main categories of impurities.

Crimping Battles
Chromatography Research Supplies
Participants will get to choose their tool out of the Manual or Electric Crimping Tool to see who can finish crimping caps onto a line of vials the fastest.

How Fast Can You Seal a Tube Furnace
Verder Scientific
The participant will need to attach the end seals on an Inconel Tube within 60 seconds.

Name that Spectrum!
Bio-Rad Laboratories, Informatics Division
The particiapnt will be given a completely unknown spectrum. Then using Bio-Rad’s KnowItAll software and spectral databases will be asked to provide the identity of that spectrum. If the participant correctly identifies the spectrum, the task is successfully completed!

Match the Molecule
Regis Technologies
A posterboard will display two columns of chiral molecules. Participants will rapidly attempt to connect enantiomers by drawing a string from the molecule on the left to the matching, mirror-image molecule on the right. Ten correct matches will earn a prize.

Healthiest Breakfast Drink Challenge
Bruker Corporation
Participant will guess which of 4 breakfast drinks contains the most nutritional value: black tea, cocoa, coffee or an energy mix. He/she will then measure a powdered sample of that drink to see the amount of Mg, P, K and Ca. Once he/she gets results, a chart with data from all four will be revealed for comparison.

The SilcoTek Coating Match Game
SilcoTek will lay out 5 stainless steel coupons. One uncoated, one Dursan coated, one Dursox coated, one Notak coated, and one SilcoNert coated. These will remain static in the matching process. SilcoTek will layout 4 coatings’ data sheets and a sheet that says “uncoated.” These will be moved around to match the stainless-steel coupons. A beaker of water and a pipet will be provided for the participant to drop water onto the test coupons. The coupons will be visibly hydrophobic/hydrophilic once they are wetted. The successful participant will see the provided water contact angle on the datasheets and match the data sheets to their respective coupons.





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