Many outsiders with a scientific training looking in at the practice of chromatography must regard the exercise as an art or mystique, rather than as a science. There is no doubt that empiricism and experience frequently provide the dominating guidelines in setting up an experiment; theoretical considerations, even of a rudimentary nature, only infrequently playa major part in the design and operation of a chromatographic separation. This situation is even more pronounced in liquid chromatography than in the newer, but enormously more successfully applied technique of gas chromatography. Indeed, despite its seventy or eighty years of history, liquid chromatography has made very little progress, the materials and equipment in use today (at least for most adsorption work in columns) differing rather little from that of Day and Tswett.
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