The number of the spots or bands tells you how many compounds are in your substance. Their color and the distance they traveled might help you to identify those compounds. You can try to find out which dyes were used in black marker using other markers from the same package as a reference samples. If certain reference color sample will travel the same distance (rf) that one of the black marker colors both of them likely to be the same chemical compound. You can't identify the chemical substance by paper chromatography, but you can roughly analyze the mixture with this simple and neat technique.
small plastic cups or glass jars or glass plate
The proposed hypothesis was correct. The paper chromatography did show that black ink could be separated into various colors. The black ink gets its color from a mixture of various colored inks blended together. The first color of ink to appear on the filter paper was yellow followed by pink, red, purple then blue. The colors separated the way they did because of the differences in their molecular characteristics, specifically, their solubility in water and their rate of absorption by the paper. The most soluble and readily absorbed ink color was the yellow. The least soluble and least absorbable ink color was the blue.
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