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By A. Volborth

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In this method the intensity of colors of equal liquid columns is compared instead of known volumes being mixed to achieve a certain color change as in volumetry. In photometric titrations the optical density changes of a solution are measured during titration to detect the endpoint. One selects colorimetric methods for the determination of minor FLAME-PHOTOMETRIC METHODS 49 and trace constituents, and in some cases to determine major constituents (Al, Si, and P), especially in industry. These methods overlap mostly into the trace element field but are mentioned here because of their importance in the determination of titanium and manganese in rocks.

One speaks of the population, which denotes the total quantity of the body represented by the sample. The population is an aggregate of all conceivable observations on some specific characteristic or a random variable. When results are grouped according to selected ranges and plotted, a histogram, which shows a certain distribution or frequency of data, is obtained. 6). This differential curve can also be represented as an integral by adding up the data consecutively and plotting in the manner indicated in this figure.

19-30) has helped to point out certain weaknesses of the methods used. The spread characterizes the precision of the method. Higher precision means a sharper curve, which is demonstrated by the extreme, hypothetical case where the standard deviation is zero. This would mean that 100% of all data should fall in this infinitely narrow range. When the broader curves are considered we notice another extreme but real possibility. It becomes clear from the asymptotic nature of the tails (which approach infinitely close to the x-axis, yet never touch it), that an improbable observation can only occur with infinitesimally small probability.

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