KWIPPED TIP: Renting a homogenizer

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homogenizer rentals

KWIPPED Tip #6

 

There are multiple types of homogenizers, but the one you choose to rent will depend on your purpose. Homogenizing, in the most general sense, is the act of blending, stirring, disrupting, or emulsifying. Homogenizer units are typical in the preparation for analysis of nucleic acids, proteins, pathogens and other laboratory-specific samples. Preparation is typically done through ultrasonic, mechanical, or pressure homogenization. Choosing the correct type of homogenizers with the right specifications will make your application run more smoothly.

Some considerations to ask are the following:

  • What is your tube size?
  • Is your sample wet or dry?
  • What is your sample size?
  • What is your preferred generator width?
  • How does your probe need to be configured?

Know the type of homogenizers you need

In general, there are 3 types of homogenizers: Ultrasonic, Mechanical, and Pressure.

Ultrasonic: Ultrasonic homogenizers work by using a combination of force, high temperatures, and pressure caused through a process called acoustic cavitation. One advantage of using an ultrasonic homogenizer, is the low number of wetted, moving parts. You have more control over operational parameters as well.

Pressure: Pressure homogenizers use force to disrupt cells. Some pressure homogenizers may include a ring that the suspension will collide with. Others might direct high-velocity streams of suspension into one another.

Mechanical: Mechanical homogenizers use agitation of the samples and their grinding media, such as ceramic, to disrupt tissue of animals and plants, as well as microorganisms. The three most common types of mechanical homogenizers include: bead mills, rotor-strator, and blade. In general, rotor-stator homogenizers are best used for plant and animal tissue. Blade homogenizers suite extraction of plant or animal tissues.

Know what specifications you require.

Speed control/range: Most standard homogenizers will fulfill the basic needs for most samples. They usually provide a range of speed. When determining the speed for a mechanical homogenizer, it’s good to start slow and work your way into the desired speed. Ultrasonic homogenizers have a “user control” to vary the amplitude of the probe.

Processing size: You can process more than one sample size on one unit. In order to do so, you’ll need to rent the appropriate tools. Always consider the appropriate generator, probe, and tool in order to match your volume range. The same generator/probe that would be best for processing multi-liters of a sample is not the best for processing a micro/mL sample.

Motor Size: Motor power is typically measure in watts. The wattage requirements are typically reliant on your application –smaller, lightweight samples and handheld will be ideal. If you have a heavy viscous material, you need a higher wattage, bench top unit.

Size: The size of homogenizer you need will depend on the space you have and your application. Homogenizers sizes range from handheld to large bench top units. Small handheld homogenizers can weigh less than 10 oz. Larger units will weigh multiple pounds.

Noise Generation: Reducing the noise of your homogenizer is typically determined by your application. Remember, noise from your ultrasonic homogenizer refers to the vibration of your sample making noise, not necessarily the machine.

Probe: Since the probe is the only part of the homogenizer that actually touches the sample, it might be the most crucial aspect of your device. Make sure that the probe of the homogenizer you rent is a high quality materials.

Cleanliness: Make sure the type of homogenizer can be easily taken a part and cleaned. You will need to thoroughly sanitize between usage.

Common manufacturers:
Common manufacturers of homogenizers include: Branson, MIDSCI, PRO Scientific, Retsch, and OMNI.

 

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