In discussing alternatives with Tensiomat users, we are often asked, “if I am going to replace my tensiometer, which one should I get?”
Let's explore the alternatives and compare their respective capabilities.
The simplest tensiometer has a duNouy Ring hanging by a hook from a level arm. This is a staple for measuring surface tension in simple liquids as well as measuring interfacial tension between oil and water. As the liquid thickens, an option with the ring rigidly fixed to the lever arm is helpful. This version can also measure the interfacial tension between two liquids in a downward direction.
Beyond these classic models, which cost in the $4,000 range, are the starting electronic balance-driven digital versions that can perform the duNouy ring tests as well as the Wilhelmy Plate technique. This level of tensiometer works well for static surface tension analysis. Depending on the test procedure’s degree of automation, these digital tensiometers cost between $6,500 and $10,000
As the testing requirements expand to include as the likes of Lamella length, sedimentation rates and temperature studies, automation and computer analysis; tensiometer capabilities grow as well. Instruments that require such features range from $12,000 to $20,000. The cost levels usually depend on the number of alternative techniques included.
As requirements expand to include determining dynamic surface tension, powder contact angle, powder wettability and dynamic surface tension, the cost level can increase to the $40,000 plus range.
When the requirement is for just surface tension, the basic units can usually meet the needs for periodic testing. However, wth high test volumes and expanded test functions, the higher-cost units become important alternatives.
Our affiliate Scientific Gear constructed a capability comparison table to help determine the type of instrument needed to best support an application. Click on the button for a copy.
We are available to discuss your specific application and help identify the instrument that will most effectively meet your needs. We hope this short review will be helpful in understanding the tensiometer alternatives and their particular capabilities.
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