Size and shape analysis of particles in suspensions from 1 µm to 1,000 µm in fully automated batch mode
The combination of image analysis sensor QICPIC, the fully-automated wet dispersion unit MIXCEL and the sample handling system MULTISAMPLER offers accurate and meaningful analyses of the size, shape and number of particles in the range from 1 µm to 1,000 µm in suspensions or emulsions. A large selection of different, flow-optimised cuvettes with layer thicknesses ranging from 30 µm to 2 mm enables flexible adaptation to the relevant particle size and measurement task. With the automated sample loading with MULTISAMPLER, a high throughput is achieved even for samples that require differing measurement methods. All dispersion and measurement parameters are software-controlled and can be saved as retrievable measuring methods for individual samples (Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs)).
With the fully-automated sample handling system MULTISAMPLER, up to 70 sample vials, each with a volume of 39 ml, are fed from a rack to the system in batch mode. The samples are clearly identified with the aid of a data matrix code. Based on this information, the measuring method defined beforehand for the sample is selected and the settings for dispersion, measurement and cleaning are set up.
MULTISAMPLER commands its own pump circuit, which is connected to the MIXCEL system with tubes. For complete removal and supply of the sample to the MIXCEL measuring circuit, two injection needles penetrate through the septum of the sample vials and are immersed. While one of the cannulas feeds dispersing liquid from the MIXCEL basin for rinsing, the other cannula extracts the sample from the vial without leaving any residue. For dispersion and mixing, the suspension basin is equipped with two powerful stirrers and an adjustable ultrasonic generator. The sample that is fed into the MIXCEL circuit is measured and evaluated, and the circuit is then rinsed and filled with dispersing liquid for the next measurement. Rinsing processes that are tailored to the sample effectively prevent any sample carryover.
For chemical resistance that is tailored to the dispersing liquid, different materials are available for gaskets and tubes (Marprene®, EPDM, FKM or FFKM). Other parts in contact with the product are non-corrosive and resistant as they are manufactured from as stainless steel, quartz glass or PTFE.
Once the sample vials have been filled and made available in the rack the system operates completely autonomously. By using two racks that feed into the system, it is possible to analyse up to 140 samples one after the other. In this way, even in autonomous batch mode with different products and applications it is possible to perform reliable, true-to-method and user-independent measurements for every single sample.
- Particle size, particle shape and their distributions | Fibre characterisation
- For finely to coarsely dispersed suspensions and emulsions
- For automated analyses in the laboratory
- Variable analysis volume from 400 ml to 1,000 ml in a closed-loop
- Sample throughput of up to 70 (140) vials with a volume of 39 ml each in batch mode
- 5 high-resolution measuring ranges from 1 µm to 1,000 µm | M3 to M7
- Automatic adjustment of all dispersion parameters | Software-controlled
- Integrated ultrasonic generator | Energy input 0 to 72 W
- Heating and cooling options | Temperature-controlled from 0°C to 90°C