The science that seeks ever improving means of measuring the chemical composition, structure and morphology of natural and man-made substances (solids, fluids, gases), or entities (cells, complex materials) combined with the interpretation of the data obtained.
In more general terms, its core is the art of measurement and interpretation. It can take us from a state where the chemical composition or properties of a sample are unknown, to a state where we understand these parameters and and their role in the systems studied and where we are able to use this information to our advantage. Whether we wish to know if DNA is present at a crime scene – and if so, whose DNA – or whether we wish to know to which degree our drinking water is contaminated by pollutants, analytical science can provide the answers. Analytical scientists develop the methods to measure the natural world, develop the tools, interpret the results of these measurements, and thereby further the cause of numerous fields which depend on these measurements to make progress.