Chemistry at the races - the work of the Horseracing Forensic Laboratory
The chemical sciences pervade almost all aspects of modern day life from the clothes we wear, the food we eat, to the pastimes we enjoy. This resource shows how a combination of modern techniques are used to ensure that horseracing is both fair and prevents abuse of the horses involved.
The material is based on the work of the Horseracing Forensic Laboratory (HFL) located near Newmarket in Suffolk where samples of urine and sometimes blood from racehorses are screened to detect and identify traces of prohibited substances.
All the material and activities have been compiled by Ted Lister who worked with a group of teachers on a writing workshop. It is hoped teachers will use it to provide an up-to-date and interesting context for their work and so enthuse the next generation of scientists.
First, an overview of the work of HFL is presented, followed by sections on immunoassay, metabolism and chromatography. Teachers' notes are also included.
Following the explanatory text are questions, which assist with understanding and also illustrate real-life applications of the chemical techniques encountered at school.
'Chemistry at the races' is designed mostly for ages 16+, but some material is also included for younger students. It is an invaluable resource for teachers, enabling them to demonstrate an up-to-date and interesting context for their work.
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Please be aware that resources have been published on the website in the form that they were originally supplied. This means that procedures reflect general practice and standards applicable at the time resources were produced and cannot be assumed to be acceptable today. Website users are fully responsible for ensuring that any activity, including practical work, which they carry out is in accordance with current regulations related to health and safety and that an appropriate risk assessment has been carried out.