Microwaves: how effective at sterilization

Rafael Maldonado rafael at howard.genetics.utah.edu
Thu Oct 19 17:48:27 EST 1995

On Wed, 18 Oct 1995, RM Brownlie wrote:

> Recently when in a rush for LB plates I have resorted to 
> microwaving 100 ml quantities and have found these to be clean every time. 
> Does any one know if this is a very reliable method for sterilization. 
> Does it inactivate spores and is sterilization dependant on an aqueous 
> environment? Could it be used to sterilize plasticware for instance.

No, it can not sterilze galssware nor plasticware.

Microwave ovens will heat water, o water containing things, and if they 
are boiling long enough, they may be sterilized. But they don't heat dry 

I tried, anyway, to microwave a flask several minutes at max power. It 
didn't work.


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