Particle/Crystal Size Measurement

Henrik Larsson
(not verified)
Posted in: , on 9. Mar. 2007 - 18:07


I'm currently trying to size some material and have run into some difficulties in doing so.

I guess I'm on here looking for some inspiration, or methods that I may not have thought of.

Normally the two methods I use to size material is either a Malvern Mastersizer or a Transmission Electron Microscope. The material I'm currently working on is out with the range of the Malvern Mastersizer (smaller) and appears almost transparent to the TEM, the image of the dispersed material is little more than indistinct fuzzy blobs.

Sorry I'm a bit vague on what it is I'm looking at, this is an R&D project and I have to be very careful what I say, also I know there are a number of vendors on here who will offer the "ideal" solution - PLEASE BE AWARE THERE IS NO CHANCE OF BEING ABLE TO PURCHASE A NEW PIECE OF EQUIPMENT FOR THIS PURPOSE.

We are a very large company and most likely have a solution "in -house"

I just can’t' think what it might be, size is very important to how this material performs and not knowing what this is a major stumbling block.

I have thought of size exclusion chromatography but if anyone can offer any other suggestions they'd be most welcome.



Jeffrey Bodycomb - Brookhaven Instruments, USA
(not verified)

Particle/Crystal Size Measurement

Posted on 9. Mar. 2007 - 07:30

Can you disperse your particles in a liquid such as water or THF? If so, you should consider dynamic light scattering (DLS). Look for a Brookhaven 90Plus at your facility. DLS will work well for most particle with sizes down to about 1 nm. For some systems, measurements down to 0.6 nm are possible.

If you cannot disperse your particles then you could try to stain them for microscopy. You will need to discuss staining with a some one who is allowed to understand the chemistry of your system very well.

(not verified)


Posted on 12. Mar. 2007 - 12:01

hi Henrik,

for smaller particles as 20nm there would be a good chance to solve your problem by using photone correlation spectrotscopy. Perhabs some of your colleagues have an Malvern Zetasizer.

cheers, Andi

Henrik Larsson
(not verified)

Re: Particle/Crystal Size Measurement

Posted on 13. Mar. 2007 - 05:27

Thank you both for your replies. - We dont have a Brookhaven 90Plus but I have discovered we have a Nanosight LM10 on order in another department. This should measure down to 15nm, which should be adequate. I'll ceratinly keep DLS in mind should it prove not to be.

Laserbeuger - Our Chinese facility has a Malvern Zetasizer, I am also sending them samples to compare/contrast with the Nanosight mentioned above.

Thanks again for your help, it is appreciated.