There are several types of pipettes, each with its specific features and functions:
- Micropipettes: Micropipettes are commonly used for small volume measurements, typically ranging from microliters (μL) to milliliters (mL). They are available as adjustable or fixed volume pipettes. Adjustable volume micropipettes allow users to set and adjust the desired volume for each use, while fixed volume micropipettes are set at a specific volume and cannot be changed.
- Multichannel Pipettes: Multichannel pipettes have multiple channels or tips that allow simultaneous transfer of multiple samples. They are used to speed up the process of pipetting when working with high-throughput applications, such as PCR, ELISA, or plate assays.
- Electronic Pipettes: Electronic pipettes use motorized systems to dispense and aspirate liquids. They offer electronic volume adjustment and may have advanced features, such as multiple pipetting modes, programmability, and memory storage of frequently used volumes.
- Serological Pipettes: Serological pipettes have a long, tapered tip and are used primarily for delivering larger volumes of liquid accurately. They are commonly used in cell culture and for transferring media and solutions in the laboratory.
- Pasteur Pipettes: Pasteur pipettes, also known as transfer pipettes, are thin, narrow glass or plastic pipettes used for transferring small volumes of liquids without the need for precise measurements.
- Volumetric Pipettes: Volumetric pipettes are designed to deliver a specific, fixed volume of liquid accurately. They are often used for preparing solutions with precise concentrations.
Pipettes are typically made of glass or plastic, and they come with disposable tips or can be autoclaved and reused, depending on the type. To use a pipette, the user first aspirates the liquid into the pipette tip by gently squeezing the pipette’s plunger or using an electronic button. Then, the liquid is dispensed into the desired container by releasing the plunger or pressing the electronic button.
To maintain the accuracy and reliability of pipettes, regular calibration, proper maintenance, and adherence to the manufacturer’s guidelines are crucial. Accurate pipetting is essential in laboratory experiments to ensure reproducibility and consistency in research results.