june july 2020



“The reward of the young scientist is the emotional thrill of being the first person in the history of the world to see something or to understand something. Nothing can compare with that experience.”

Cecilia Payne-Gaposchkin
1900 – 1979

Astronomy, Astrophysics



Winners are chosen by our computer on a random basis. The prize is the client’s choice of $100 worth of laboratory items from a supplied list.


From Chem-Chrom laboratories:

“Chem-Chrom laboratories and services is one of the leading and advanced testing laboratories in Australia, providing services and solutions to diverse industries such as pharmaceuticals, food, cosmetic, chemical and others. We are a TGA and APVMA approved facility for testing chemistry and microbiology samples.

We are equipped with state of the art brand new instruments and experienced scientists.
Chem-Chrom laboratories has been providing expert solutions to many companies in Australia and abroad. We have all zone stability chambers and can perform stability and testing for all 4 zones to support pharmaceutical quality.
Testing pharmaceutical products as per regulatory body requirements such as TGA and FDA is important and we provide services of testing of raw materials, intermediate and finished products as per BP/EP/USP. Chem-Chrom laboratories will be supporting those industries for regulatory compliance.

Complementary medicine testing is another expertise of Chem-Chrom laboratories and we provide full support by testing vitamins and herbal medicinal products.

Food, cosmetics, chemical testing and ensuring compliance is an equally important part of the current life style. Chem-Chrom has all the instrumentation to support each testing needs and requirements.
Our ICP-OES is capable of testing trace levels of any metals and minerals in food, pharmaceuticals and in any other samples. GC-MS can provide testing of residual solvents.
Pesticide residues and oil analysis can be used for food and pharmaceutical testing. HPLC is capable of testing pharmaceutical, chemical, oil and food samples at trace levels. We have other equipment in the laboratory which provides all testing solution to diverse industries.

Chem-Chrom laboratories is the one stop shop for all your testing needs and we also provide technical support to improve the customers product quality.”





At what temperature centigrade did water boil in the year 1743?

The answer will be in the next edition of the Rowe Scientific newsletter.

Did you know the answer to the last quiz question?

“Cooked tomato frequently stains plasticware, but what chemical is responsible?"


Lycopene, a type of carotenoid, is the fat soluble pigment responsible for tomato's red colour.

Flowers, C. Rushing, W. & Song, S. (2003). Fluorine gas treatment of washing machine parts. United States patent US20050005956A1.

Foley, P. R. Song, X & Pieroni, L. (1999). Process and composition for removing lycopene stains from plastic surfaces. International Patent WO2000015749A1






Congratulations to Mr Douglas Ballantyne, Victoria University 2020 recipient of the Rowe Scientific Chemistry Scholarship.  


In Douglas’s words:

“I originally enrolled to a food science course, to upskill from my previous career in commercial cookery. I’ve always had a love for science, but only studied physics and biology at high school level. After getting a taste for chemistry as a first year undergraduate, I transferred to study it as a major. I have been immersed in the subject since then – with a particular interest in the rich history of discovery which developed the field over the past four centuries.

I am continually amazed by the power of chemistry. The mysteries of a substance can be unravelled by techniques that were developed and validated well before I was born. During one practical experiment introducing the class to AAS I was able to determine the origin of commercially available milk back to the dairy where it was produced based on the ratio of calcium to protein.

Now that I have started studying a second major in ecology, my focus has shifted towards environmental chemistry. It’s another exciting pathway that I believe will continue to grow throughout this century. I hope to develop alongside the field and contribute to the scientific methods that will be used in the future. This has been bolstered by the experience I am gaining in my new laboratory job testing soils with ICP. I am excited to see where my new career is going to take me. This scholarship will help me focus on my studies and get the most out of my undergraduate course. Thank you, Rowe Scientific, for your generosity.”

Well done Douglas, and best wishes in your future career, from the national staff of Rowe Scientific Pty Ltd.


The current recipient of the Rowe Scientific Chemistry Scholarship at Griffith University in Queensland, is Mr Ben Giuliani
In Ben’s words;

 "I am currently completing the Bachelor of Science Advanced (Honours) program with majors in chemistry and biochemistry. My academic interests include natural product chemistry and drug discovery.

Once I found out about this scholarship a few years ago I made it something to strive for, so to actually receive it is really something special. All the hard work and dedication has literally paid off! This scholarship will help to relieve the financial burden associated with being a full-time student.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank both Griffith University for their selection, and Rowe Scientific Pty Ltd for supporting the next generation of upcoming science professionals."


Congratulations Ben, from the national staff of Rowe Scientific Pty Ltd. 


Congratulations to Ms Janeke Nel and Mr Brendan Greene, current recipients of Rowe Scientific Pty Ltd Scholarships at Murdoch University in WA. When asked to advise why they were interested in Chemistry, they responded as below.


Ms Janeke Nel

In Janeke’s words;

“I find chemistry interesting because it is fundamental to our existence. Chemical processes occur everywhere and being able to understand it is exciting.

Chemistry can also be used to tackle real world problems and help answer important questions like how the world originated.

The sheer scope of chemistry research has no bounds and new discoveries are always being made.
I cannot wait until I am part of the scientific community and able to make a positive contribution to society like the chemists before me.”

Mr Brendan Greene

In Brendan’s words;

“My fascination with the chemical sciences is grounded in my great curiosity to understand the world, which I believe is best achieved through the scientific method.
Since chemistry is fundamental to the workings of almost everything we seek to understand, and central to almost all other sciences, I have found myself drawn to its huge potential for explaining and understanding different kinds of phenomena.

The broad applications of chemistry, from the material science behind the future of our plastics and alloys, to the biochemistry behind cellular processes and effective drug design, is why I have chosen to study chemistry.”


Best wishes for your future chemistry studies Janeke and Brendan, from the national staff of Rowe Scientific Pty Ltd (many of whom are industrial chemists by profession).


Congratulations to Ms Hailee Philipps who is working on her Honours Project at Edith Cowan University (ECU) School of Science, with Dr Magdalena Wajrak as her supervisor.


The title of Hailee’s project is “Development of a GC – FID Methanizer Method for the Quantification of Products from Electrochemical Reduction of CO₂.

In Hailee’s words;

“A current area of research is the electrochemical reduction of CO₂ into various molecules with both industrial and domestic uses, such as CO, HCOOH, CH4, C₂H₄ and C₂HOH. Research into improving this process is ongoing around the world, and an essential part of development is being able to analyse the output of the electrochemical cells.

Gas chromatography (GC) is used to separate these compounds, and flame ionisation detection (FID) is ideal for quantification because of its high sensitivity and wide linear range, however, it cannot detect CO or CO₂, compounds which are vital in this research.

To overcome this issue, the GC-FID assembly can be fitted with a methanizer, which converts CO and CO₂ into methane, a compound which is detectable by FID. The aim of this project is to develop an accurate GC-FID-methanizer method for the quantification of low-levels of CO₂ and other carbon compounds produced during the electrochemical reduction of CO₂. “

Best wishes with your research Hailee, from the staff of Rowe Scientific Pty Ltd.


Congratulations to Mr Jacob Birch, the current recipient of the Rowe Scientific Chemistry Scholarship at Southern Cross University (Qld).


In Jacob’s words;

“Thank you Rowe Scientific! This generous scholarship could not have come at a better time after losing income due to the disruption of COVID-19.

For my Honours project I have been reviewing what is known about the nutritional quality of native grass grain consumed by Indigenous Australian Peoples for many thousands of years. I am particularly interested in improving knowledge of functional nutrients, such as: phenolics, polyunsaturated fatty acids, phospholipids, prebiotic fibre and macro/micro-nutrients.

Once social distancing eases I hope to get back into the labs to show native cereals are nutritionally comparable, if not superior, to cultivated cereals."

Well done Jacob and best wishes in your research, from the national staff of Rowe Scientific Pty Ltd.


Our congratulations to Ms Jenisi Kelderman who is the 2020 recipient of the Rowe Scientific Chemistry Scolarship at Monash University.


In Jenisi’s words;

“I moved to Melbourne from a small hobby farm in western Victoria, near Ballarat. My decision to study chemistry at Monash University was due to a multitude of reasons. One of those was because of Monash's spacious campus at Clayton being more comfortable for me, being from regional Victoria. Another was a familial connection to Monash as my brother was already studying chemistry here. Lastly, and most importantly, I chose to study at Monash due to its reputation and success in chemistry both in Australia and around the world.

Since starting at Monash in 2018, my interest and passion for chemistry has continued to increase. In 2019, I completed an undergraduate research project synthesising novel anticancer molecules with the Andrews Group in the School of Chemistry. I am particularly interested in research in inorganic, organometallic and medicinal chemistry.

My goals for 2020 include achieving highly in my studies, completing chemistry research that I am interested in and challenged by, continue volunteering and giving back to the science community of Monash that has helped me so much and to learn a new language.

The effect of COVID-19 has been widespread; it has impacted me being unable to see friends and family and has meant that I needed to make the adjustment to online delivery of classes and teaching labs. Financially, it has also been tough as I have been unable to work since the restrictions have been in place.

One of the biggest changes that I have had to make during this semester has been due to the inability to physically complete research, which resulted in the shuffling of my classes. I will now need to complete a chemistry research unit during the 2020/2021 summer semester, assuming the COVID-19 restrictions are lifted. This will impact how much and what kind of work I am able to obtain over next summer. Thus, the scholarship from Rowe Scientific is very vital at this stage and will continue to help me complete my studies for the rest of 2020 and in the future.

My education and career aspirations include completing Honours in Chemistry in 2021, gaining some chemistry experience in the workforce and going onto completing a PhD in chemistry. In the future, I hope to have a significant impact on the way drugs are synthesised, characterised and that those drugs will have a positive impact on people’s health. My goal is to reduce the burden of disease through chemistry.”

Well done Jenisi, from the national staff of Rowe Scientific Pty Ltd. I’m sure the namesake of your university (Sir John Monash) would empathise with your obvious pursuit of excellence and work ethic. (R. Rowe. 14.5.20)


Our congratulations to the following recipients of Rowe Scientific Chemistry Scholarships at Charles Sturt University in NSW.


In Marjanna’s words;

“My name is Marjanna Duggan and I live in Wagga Wagga NSW with my 2 kids. 4 years ago I started a job at the Wagga Christian College as a lab assistant. Here I was reminded again for my love of science.
I decided to start a Bachelor of Science, majoring in Chemistry. I love the magic that science can bring and finding out the why behind it. Last year at work I ran a science day for K-4 kids and seeing their exciting faces about just simple science shown, made me realise I want to eventual teach kids and get them excited about science.”


In Ben’s words;

 “Chemistry is an extraordinary field of study that traverses many disciplines.

It is amazing that all matter is made from different molecular structures built on a relatively small range of elements as seen in the periodic table. The slightest change in structure is powerful enough to alter the function and impact of chemicals, such as in the tragic example of thalidomide.

These small changes dictate the colours we see, the sounds we hear, the food we eat, the air we breathe, our DNA and even the way we think. I believe the miracle of life is perceptibly intensified philosophically with even the most basic understanding of chemistry.”

Congratulations Marjanna and Ben from the staff of Rowe Scientific Pty Ltd, and best wishes in your future careers.


Congratulations to Mr Stephen Macfarlane, the 2020 recipient of the Rowe Scientific Chemistry Scholarship, at the University of Wollongong.


Mr Stephen MacFarlane

In Stephen’s words;

"I am currently a third year studying a Bachelor of Science at University of Wollongong with a major in chemistry and minors in Biochemistry and Geoscience.
I find the study of chemistry to be fascinating and enjoy learning how things work at a fundamental level. My goals academically include completing my Bachelor’s in Science and continuing to an honours/master’s degree with the intention of furthering my studies into a PHD, although I have yet to choose a specific area of study.

Because of your scholarship, I will be able to further my education in science and this will enable me to devote more time to my studies. I hope to make a positive impact with science and to continue learning new things long into the future.”

Well done Stephen and best wishes in your future studies, from the national staff of Rowe Scientific Pty Ltd.


Congratulations to Mr Chet Cox, the current recipient of the Rowe Scientific Scholarship at the University of Southern Queensland.

Mr Chet Cox

When asked what interested him about the study of chemistry in the food area, Chet’s response included the following; 

"Food Is a highly complicated material with an incredible expanse of variation in structure, activity and sensory characteristics.

Due to this, understanding the spectrum of food as a material requires an appreciation of chemistry and its interaction with biological and physical sciences.

During study, there has been a few interests that I tend to gravitate towards when selecting topics. The original interest was in fermentation and the range of chemicals that could be created through the use of various active fermenters and their pathways.


Branching from this interest, came another which involves the bio-valorisation of food waste either by repurposing excess food or creating a use for manufactured by-products in which chemistry plays a large role in.

Lastly, I am also intrigued by sensory science as being able to determine the compounds responsible for smells, tastes and mouthfeel which is a rewarding experience.

This is only a portion of my interests, and there will be many new ones to come as well, which is precisely why I enjoy chemistry."

Well done Chet, from all the staff of Rowe Scientific Pty Ltd.



Congratulations to Ms Jessica Wilkinson, a recipient of a 2020 Rowe Scientific Metallurgy Scholarship.

In Jessica’s words;

“After participating in the Engineering and Resources trip to Newman in 2019 I discovered how much I enjoyed the mining process and how I would enjoy going into the mining and resource industry at the completion of my studies at Curtin.

This is what made me choose to study the Extractive Metallurgy and Chemical Engineering double degree provided by Curtin. Extractive metallurgy involves separation and chemical processes that convert an ore into a purer form that can be used industrially.

I find the chemistry involved with these different processes fascinating and appreciate the real-world applications that it has. I would like to thank Rowe Scientific for providing me with the Rowe Scientific Metallurgy Scholarship in 2020. This scholarship has allowed me to focus more of my time and energy on my studies without any financial burden.”

Well done Jessica, and best wishes in your future studies, from the staff of Rowe Scientific Pty Ltd nationally.





Dear Clients. 

The catch phrase "We are all in this together"  really summed up the last three months as we all adjusted to a new normal in our work and home life. Demand for many products peaked and securing basic consumables such as ethanol, IPA, face masks and antibacterial wipes, to name but a few items was virtually impossible.

Revenue soared in March and continued into April and the inevitable decline was witnessed in May, however the demand side is slowly coming back to equilibrium.

Despite the improved availability of many items, including those already mentioned, the supply of many other items continues to be impacted and stock in many cases is restricted to supply for medical use only. Nitrile and Latex gloves and sterile disposable syringes are two of the items which spring to mind immediately.

Behind the scenes, Rowe Scientific is working hard to secure stock of all the core consumables you purchase on a regular basis, and are taking proactive action to mitigate risk to supply. Our focus and commitment remains steadfast in these turbulent and tumultuous times, to keep you supplied with the scientific items you need to do your work.

If you require assistance in sourcing items please give one of our NSW team a call. Stay well and stay safe as we gradually emerge from the lockdown and return to the new normal for now anyway.

All the best from:
John, Allan, Hayden, Kathryn, Kazi, Rod



Dear Clients.

We hope that you and your families are all keeping healthy and safe during the current lockdown. Many lives have been turned upside down and for those of us who still have a job, we should spare a thought for those less fortunate.

The Rowe family have been working feverishly in the background since last year to secure stock so that we don’t run out of the critical lines you are using to do your work.

Unfortunately the availability of some products, especially those being utilised by front line services, has impacted on our ability to receive stock that was ordered and in which we were promised. We will keep searching for alternative options.
In addition, we are currently experiencing large fluctuations in the cost of importing goods, both with exchange rate variations as well as exhorbitant air freight and sea freight transport costs. The good news is that we are still here to support you and we will endeavour to keep you supplied with the items you need to do your work for as long as it takes.

Please visit our website for the latest news and for new products now available that may assist you with your day to day work in the laboratory.

Cheers from the Queensland team:
Yvonne, Andrew, Brian, George, Jacob, Jean-Esteve, Josephine, Kiran, Leon, Martin, Robert, Steve.



Dear Clients.

We have had an extremely busy start to 2020 and we must thank all of our clients for that. The COVID-19 situation is continuing to evolve and develop Nationally and on a Global level. As I write this, South Australia has stayed consistently at 438 active cases for 11 days straight, so to it would appear the curve is flattening for our state.

During this time, we have had staff working from both home as well as the office so we are more able to meet and service all of your needs. We have social distancing protocols in place which means we will not be visiting any of our clients until it is deemed safe to do so.

We are still seeing delays in terms of freight both locally and internationally. If you are envisaging work where stock reliability may be an issue, I urge you to plan well in advance.

We look forward to visiting you in the very near future. Until then please remain safe and well and let us know how we can assist you as we head into the end of the 2019/20 financial year.

All the best from,
Doug, Danielle, Erik, Joanne, Katelynn, Mark, Michael, Paula, Samuel, Steve.



Dear Clients.

Hello from your Rowe team in Victoria - we are all well and work is split 'twixt the office/warehouse and home. We hope that all of you, our customers and friends, are coping as well as can be whilst we work through this COVID-19 pandemic. Persistence and common sense will see us through and out the other side.

How do you know that the surfaces you are working on are clean, I mean really clean? That is exactly why you need the “Charm PocketSwab® Plus”, an ATP swab that is room-temperature stable, and can give you a result in 5 seconds. The same swab used across multiple industries for cleaning validation, infection control and HACCP audits.

As we approach the “End of Financial Year”, is there equipment you need that must be invoiced before the 30th June? Our stocks on oven and incubators are very good. We have centrifuges currently in stock, whilst many Mettler and Ohaus balance model options are only a couple of weeks away. Most of the Ratek mixers, shakers and equipment range can be delivered within a week. As always our job is to find you what you need to do your work.

Hope to hear from you soon.

From your team in Victoria:
Garry, Adam, Amanda, Brian, Christine, Hoa, Louise, Mango, Nic, Paul.



Dear Clients.

Greetings from the West. I trust that you have stayed safe over the past months. Rowe Scientific of course implemented the social distancing rules and all staff remain healthy. Our warehouses have remained open, with an extended gap between day and afternoon shift to allow for additional cleaning to occur.

We are seeing wide swings in the cost of goods. Initially it was a double impact with a sharp decline in the Australian dollar combined with a surge in the cost of freight. Yes, the dollar has improved but freight costs just continue to increase. With some ports it is less about “how much” and more about “can our goods get uplifted please?". Australian sourced products are also not exempt with the surge to make hand sanitiser causing the cost of ethanol to double, just today I was advised that the cost of iso-propanol has increased by 50%.

When we are offering you the lowest price in the market, we have no capacity to absorb these impacts. When we call for relief, that is exactly what we seek. We appreciate having been your partner yesterday, have stock to supply you today, and look forward to being your partner tomorrow. Our new VOIP based phone system enables us to service you from home with the same functionality as if we were office based. Please feel free to call us.

All the best from:
Peter Sommers and the Western Australian Team.


South Australia
& NT


Victoria & Tasmania

New South Wales

Western Australia

Ph: (08) 8186 0523

Ph: (07) 3376 9411

Ph: (03) 9701 7077

Ph: (02) 9603 1205

Ph: (08) 9302 1911

Rowe Scientific Pty Ltd

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*Prices do not include GST and only while stock lasts. We reserve the right to change specifications, details and descriptions without notice. Pictures for illustrative purposes only. Discounts do not apply to service, freight or repair charges.

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