STEP-Technology from LUM - Measuring Demixing of Emulsions and Suspensions

By Staff Writers

Topics Covered

Evaluation Features of STEP-Technology
Applications of LUM Instruments
About LUM GmbH


LUM instruments such as the LUMiSizer®, LUMiFuge® and LUMiReader® use the patented STEP-Technology® to perform direct measurement of demixing phenomena, including consolidation, flotation and sedimentation. STEP-Technology allows monitoring of the whole sample.


STEP-Technology lets users obtain Space- and Time-Resolved Extinction Profiles (STEP) over the whole sample length of up to twelve different samples at once. The entire sample cell is illuminated by parallel light (I0) and the transmitted light I is determined at a micro-scale resolution by thousands of sensors placed linearly across the entire length of the sample. Transmission can be converted into extinction, facilitating the quantification of the particle concentration, using the following formula:

lg = I/I0

The innovative STEP-Technology offers high flexibility to match specific sample properties utilizing different cells. It is possible to adjust the light intensity with respect to the corresponding sample turbidity utilizing SEPView, the comprehensive database based PC-software.

Transmission profiles are stored as rapid as each second or with time intervals of up to hours, and displayed as a sequence on the screen. Storing of transmission data is done automatically in a specially designed database, in conjunction with calibration data and all instrument settings.

The centrifuge speed can be set at a constant value or is programmable to be changed during the measurement within the range of 200rpm and 4000rpm, corresponding to relative centrifugal forces (RCF) of 5 to 2300 at the bottom of the cell.

Integrated temperature control can handle all present and future applications. The comparison of classic method and STEP-Technology with kinetics of transmission is shown in Figure 1.

Figure 1. Comparison of Classic Method and STEP-Technology

Evaluation Features of STEP-Technology

The evolution of the transmission profiles consists of the complete kinetics data of any changes in concentrations caused by phase separation, coalescence, flocculation, sedimentation, or creaming.

Using these space- and time-resolved extinction profiles, demixing phenomena are measured relating to dewaterability, sediment consolidation, separated phase volume (liquid or solid), sedimentation and flotation velocity of particles, or clarification velocity. Additionally, STEP-Technology provides comprehensive data pertaining to the polydispersity or multimodality of dispersed particles.

Applications of LUM Instruments

The sophisticated measuring instruments offered by LUM are used in the comprehensive qualitative and quantitative characterization of dispersions in many different research and industrial facilities handling innumerable materials, including:

  • Bitumen, petrol, crude oil, heavy fuel, and ceramic material
  • Polymers and latices, sludges, slurries and technical dispersions
  • Lubricants and coolants
  • Paints, lacquers, pigments and inks such as DIY and industrial paints, automotive lacquers, printing inks, and pigment dispersions
  • Cosmetics and pharmaceutical products, including creams, hair care products, body care products, veterinary medicine, and tooth paste
  • Food products such as baby and infant food, dressings and sauces, functional food, beverages, ketchup, milk and milk products

About LUM GmbH

LUM GmbH is the leading company in the field of accelerated dispersion and stability analysis and testing of composite materials. They offer innovative solutions for real-time and accelerated analysis in the following fields:

  • dispersion analysis
  • stability analysis
  • separation analysis
  • particle sizing
  • material testing

LUM instruments are found in international chemical, food, cosmetics, pharmaceutical and most other industrial branches.

LUM GmbH also offers analytical services in the fields mentioned above.

This information has been sourced, reviewed and adapted from materials provided by LUM GmbH.

For more information on this source, please visit LUM GmbH.

Date Added: Nov 30, 2013 | Updated: Dec 2, 2013
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