Chemist @clay_owens is having trouble with his students:
#chemistry question from a student yesterday: "Can I recover my sample from my NMR if I run it in D2O?" what do you say to that?! #rookie
— Clayton Owens (@clay_owens) March 8, 2013
As you might expect, this has prompted the hashtag #undergradfail for stories of those endearing questions that inevitably arise. Such as this budding crystallographer:
@clay_owens @_byronmiller I love being sarcastic to UGs. I caught one scratching the outside of a beaker to get crystals..
— Dr Jess (@JessTheChemist) March 8, 2013
To balance things out slightly, I thought I'd try to collect some 'grad fails' here.
Naturally, I've had a perfect lab career; ever since I made my first intractable mixture at the age of 7 by boiling milk in the kettle, I've managed not to create any hilarious anecdotes for my colleagues. If you don't count the time I accidentally melted a round-bottomed flask filled with activated molecular sieves and it went right up my manifold. Or the time I put a tap onto a freshly-opened canister of trimethylamine but forgot to add teflon to seal it. Or that time I got a faceful of methanolic ammonia...
Go on - what's the stupidest thing you've done in the lab?