There are times when heat plays a crucial role in testing liquid samples. Hence, instead of a regular centrifuge, laboratories and diagnostic centres choose to use a heated centrifuge.
In terms of function, a heated centrifuge works in the same manner as a regular centrifuge, only that it has specific temperature controls. This type of centrifuge is necessary when testing liquid materials whose characteristics change with temperature adjustments.
While they can be used for clinical diagnostics, heated centrifuges are seen more in other industries. These include:
- Oil and petroleum testing
Before they are manufactured for consumer use, crude oil and petroleum are first graded and monitored for their quality. Grading these fluids is done via the process of sedimentation using a centrifuge.
Collecting the sediments in industrial oils isn’t easy, as some of them continue to be suspended even when run under centrifugal force. By changing temperatures (applying a certain amount of heat) and increasing the rotation speed, the sediments from these oils sink to the bottom of the tube. The quality of the oil can then be observed and graded for quality.
- Field determination of sediment in the water
Checking for sediment in the water cannot always be determined using a regular centrifuge. Some materials remain suspended within the water due to their mass and buoyancy.
Adjusting the temperature levels of the centrifuge also changes the properties of the water sample. As the centrifuge rotates under a specific temperature level, the sediments fall into the bottom of the tube.
- Food and dairy processing systems
Lastly, heated centrifuges are used in food and dairy processing systems. In dairy factories, butter and milk clarity are measured to identify and remove unwanted curds and other sediments. Running their samples in a heated centrifuge allows food technologists to make recommendations to improve the product’s quality before releasing it to the market.