Pure Water for Science Labs: The Most Important Part of Any Research Lab

Arguably the most important part of any research lab is something many people never think about; pure water.  All laboratories use water for a wide array of essential lab practices. These include preparing media, buffers, cell cultures, sensitive analytical techniques, just to name a few. Pure water is often taken for granted, but water quality is crucial to the outcome of a lab’s research. Impurities in water can cause weeks, even years of research to be called into question. There are three main types of pure water; type I, type II, and type III. Type I water is ultrapure lab water. A typical ultrapure water or high purity lab water goes through three stages: a pretreatment stage to produce purified water, a primary stage to further purify the water, and a polishing stage which is the most expensive part of the treatment process. Type I pure water has a high resistivity (18 MΩ) as a result of deionization. Type II water is a distilled water. It is more pure than type III water but not as pure as the ultrapure type I water. Type III water is typically water that is purified through reverse osmosis.

One way to access pure water in a lab is through a lab water system. These systems are designed to produce pure and ultrapure water either directly from a tap or through a secondary system. A vast array of purification technologies, materials, design, and installation options are available to deliver purified water throughout a laboratory facility. Identifying the combination best suited to meeting each user and departmental needs throughout the facility can be a daunting task. Not only can it be difficult to determine what system will fit a lab best, but these systems can also be costly to install. There is also costs to maintain such system, and the cost for maintenance can add up quickly. An alternative to an installed water system is to purchase bottles of pure water. This cost effective alternative saves the lab money on an installed system they have to diligently maintain and insures the lab has pure water to produce the best results.

IBI Scientific manufactures cell culture grade water, DEPC treated water, molecular biology grade water, and PCR grade water. All IBI ultrapure water products are first processed by reverse osmosis then dual deionization.

  • Our cell culture grade water is ideal for cell culture applications. It is first double-distilled, then 0.1 µm sterile filtered, then steam sterilized. In addition to the water sterilization step, IBI cell culture water is autoclaved a second time inside the polycarbonate bottle. This results in a sterility assurance level of 10-3 or terminal sterility. Cell culture grade water is also certified endotoxin free to 0.005 EU/mL.
  • Our DEPC treated water is also 0.1 µm sterile filtered and certified nuclease free. DEPC is added to the water to kill RNase activity, the water is then autoclaved to get rid of DEPC and ensure sterility.
  • Our molecular grade and PCR grade water are the same water with different packaging. This water is 0.1 µm sterile filtered, steam sterilized, and certified nuclease free. Our PCR grade water is conveniently packaged in 2 mL vials for easy access and use in PCR procedures.

One of the big advantages of our product is the sterility of our water. All water is sterile filtered through the smallest pore size available removing all pyrogens. Our water is also sterile filtered and aseptically dispensed into a sterile polycarbonate bottle for terminal sterility. The polycarbonate bottle allows for labs to autoclave the bottle continuously for sterility assurance. This autoclavable polycarbonate bottle is also reusable, so it can be repurposed in the lab for a variety of applications.

Here are the some links for some of the above mentioned water products.


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