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As commonplace and simple as water may seem, its presence within a variety of products, and the way companies and practitioners are able to measure it, is a fine science. For industries as diverse as food, cosmetics, oil and gas, water treatment, and chemicals, the amount of water -- or, more generally, any liquid that evaporates when exposed to heat -- as a percentage of the total weight of the product matters for product quality, shelf stability, pricing, among other things. Moisture analysers are modern machines that offer a precise and efficient way to measure the moisture content of samples to be extrapolated to products as a whole.
DSC, which stands for Data Support Company, offers a complete line of new and reconditioned moisture analysers among its analysers, scales, and balances. Featuring seven brands, DSC selects moisture analysers that have an intuitive user interface, sleek design, automatic calculation of results, accuracy and durability.
Much like the older, “manual” method of oven drying in laboratories, modern, digital moisture analysers rely on the calculation of the “loss on drying”; that is, the percentage of any given substance’s weight that is lost to evaporation when heated. Instead of an hours-long process using ovens for dehydrating, moisture analysers measure moisture content using electric and digital means.
The process of measuring the moisture content, and the functions of the moisture analyser machine, are:
To weigh the substance and all moisture within (known as the “wet weight”). Generally practitioners use a small sample of their product placed on the sample pad or container of the moisture analyser..
To apply heat from one of a few sources, such as halogen or infrared bulbs, or microwaves, to the sample, causing liquids to evaporate into a gas.
To track the weight of the substance as the moisture evaporates. The weight will decrease from the original “wet weight” as it loses moisture. Many moisture analysers provide a real-time, digital reading and graph of the sample’s weight. The moisture analyser automatically senses when the weight has stabilised, meaning that no additional moisture is present to evaporate.
To record the stable weight is called the “dry weight”, the name for the stable weight of the sample once all the moisture has evaporated.
To calculate the percentage of moisture with the formula:
Moisture Content (%) = Wet weight - Dry Weight x 100
In the formula, the difference between the wet weight and dry weight represents the weight of liquid that evaporated upon heating. This difference is calculated as a ratio to the original, wet weight and translated into a percentage.
The variety of the DSC line of moisture analysers ensures they can serve each customer’s needs. For example, models offer different heating mechanisms, including halogen lamp, infrared, and microwave that heat at up to 200 degrees Celsius. While some DSC’s moisture analysers are glass-free, reducing the chance for breakage and contamination; others rely on the highly effective glass sample pads that are ideal for liquid samples.
DSC, based in Panarama City, California, prides itself on customer support. A helpful, blinking support chat box greets each website visitor, and DSC’s Facebook page shares motivational quotations for their customers. For almost thirty years, their team has offered counsel on product choice based on the customer’s purpose and budget as well as technical support for their products post-sale. As a one-stop-shop, DSC offers accessories for moisture analysers like aluminum dishes, printers, and sample pads.