Created by PhET Interactive Simulations at University of Colorado Boulder

Beer's Law Lab

This component simulates a Beer's Law Lab in a virtual space, enabling students to discover the relationship between concentration and absorbance.


How can you use this simulation?

Students manipulate wavelength, solution type, concentration, and volume to determine each variable’s effect on absorbance and transmission.

Use this PhET simulation in the Smart Sparrow author to set up a specific lab learning activity, define which variables students can manipulate in the simulation, and optionally score each student’s performance.

  • Design and conduct an experiment to determine the molar absorption coefficient of a solute
  • Compare the absorption versus wavelength curve for different solutes, and justify a choice of wavelength for experimentation
  • Experimentally determine the concentration of a solution using Beer’s Law
  • Predict how the intensity of light absorbed/transmitted will change with changes in solution type, solution concentration, container width, or light source, and explain why


Have a play


Basic setup instructions

  1. Copy the simulation link by clicking on the Get Component button at the top of this page.
  2. In the Author Tool, add a Blank component from the Components tab and resize it to your liking.
  3. Paste the url that you’ve just copied into the Component’s source.
  4. With the component selected, click on Configure and select Options to set it up.
  5. You can:
    • set and lock specific variables on the screen, such as wavelength or solution.
    • set the apparatus, such as the detector, to only report absorbance or transmission.
    • hide the solution container, such that students have to determine which solution it contains.



Q: Can I see this simulation in action?This simulation is included within a case study lesson of the course Critical Chemistry, in which students determine the necessary design of the pulse-oximeter, a device to detect the amount of hemoglobin in a person’s blood. To find out more, visit the Inspark Network homepage and preview the course.


Advanced setup

PhET Interactive Simulations is a premier Smart Sparrow partner. To use PhET simulations in your courseware, please contact our team for reduced partner pricing.

Want to work with us to create your own component?
Request services