Chemistry is the study of matter transformations. In order to learn firsthand how changes in matter occur, our students spend significant time in the lab handling chemicals. We naturally try to limit student exposure to chemicals that are known to be hazardous. The superior ventilation system in the Center for Natural Science Learning and Research was designed specifically with safety in mind. All research students in the department are required to pass a written safety examination prior to commencing any laboratory work. We also provide detailed information to students on the properties and hazards of the chemicals they handle, in the form of Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS). Knowledge of potential hazards forms the best defense against accidents in the chemistry laboratory.
I.W.U. Chemistry Safety Links
- Sigma-Aldrich-Fluka MSDS via the web
- Cornell University MSDS website
- University of Vermont MSDS web site
- F.A.Q. about MSDS
- TOXNET (Maintained by the National Library of Medicine)
Other Important Safety Links
- Environmental Protection Agency
- Occupational Safety and Health Administration
- Center for Disease Control and Prevention
- Occupational Safety and Health Section (University of Illinois) contains useful information on several topics including asbestos, cadmium, lead, gas cylinders and fire safety.