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Faster, more sensitive zeta-potential measurements

Zeta potential is a key indicator of colloid stability. The higher the magnitude of the zeta potential, the more stable the colloid. A lower-magnitude zeta potential indicates a less stable colloid; in other words, the colloidal particles will tend to aggregate or coagulate. Thus, knowledge of zeta potential is important for optimizing processes and for quality control.

Nonetheless, the measurement of zeta potential has previously been beset by significant limitations. Zeta potential measurements require an electric field to be applied to the sample. But electric fields can lead to sample heating and decomposition, so the electric fields must be kept as low as possible, and applied for as short a time as possible.

Until now, the state of the art in zeta-potential measurements was phase-analysis light scattering (PALS), which is based on electrophoretic light scattering (ELS) measurements.

PALS was an improvement over previous ELS measurements, because it no longer required the application of such large fields, so sample heating and decomposition was reduced. PALS measurements can be unreliable, however, especially with sensitive samples, where very short measuring times and low electric fields are required.

In an application report from Anton Paar, a newly patented technology called cmPALS is introduced. cmPALS (Continuously Monitored Phase-Analysis Light Scattering) results in dramatic enhancements in the sensitivity and stability of zeta-potential measurements. This technology is incorporated in the recently introduced particle-analyzing instrument, the Litesizer 500.

The report first describes some background information about the technical development of cmPALS and then presents a direct comparison of results from the cmPALS instrument with those from a PALS instrument.

To compare their performance, the zeta potential of a latex standard (0.05 per cent in 10 mM NaCl) was measured with both methods.

Click on the link to download the Application Report and to learn about the results its tests.

Anton Paar Ltd

Anton Paar develops, produces and distributes highly accurate laboratory instruments and process measuring systems, and provides custom-tailored automation and robotic solutions.

Anton Paar develops, produces and distributes highly accurate laboratory instruments and process measuring systems, and provides custom-tailored automation and robotic solutions.

It is the world leader in the measurement of density, concentration and CO2 and in the field of Rheometry. Other areas of specialty are: Viscometry, Polarimetry, Refractometry, Microwave Sample Preparation & Synthesis, Chemical and Mechanical Surface and Nanostructure Analysis.

With over 2200 employees at the headquarters in Graz (Austria) and the 25 sales subsidiaries worldwide, Anton Paar ensure that their products live up to their excellent reputation. The core competence of the company – high-precision production – and close contact to the scientific community form the basis for the quality of Anton Paar’s instruments.

A strong sales network in more than 110 countries guarantees customers rapid support and answers to their application and service queries.

Innovation is the basis for progress and every year Anton Paar invests more than 20 percent of the annual turnover in R&D.

Anton Paar Limited, a subsidiary of Anton Paar GmbH, provides sales, application support and service to users across the UK and Ireland.

With an office in St Albans (UK) and Dublin (Ireland) and a team of over 30 dedicated employees, Anton Paar Limited aims to provide first-class service at every stage in the customer relationship, ensuring our products live up to their excellent reputation.

Anton Paar Ltd
Unit F, The Courtyard
St Albans
AL4 0LA
UK

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