Three instruments are available for particle size and distribution analysis:
• Horiba LA-950V2 – State-of-the-art system utilizing Mie laser scattering to measure the particle size and distribution over the range of 0.01 – 3,000 µm. Accuracy is guaranteed to within 0.6% and precision to within 0.1%. Good particle dispersion is provided by an ultrasonic probe for test volumes as small as 10ml. A jet feeder is available for feeding dry powders.
• Scanning Electron Microscopes – An alternative to the light scattering method is the use of an SEM, especially when the particles consist of strong agglomerates that cannot be broken up by ultrasonication. The SEM is also useful to examine the individual particle morphology.
• X-ray Diffraction – For solid samples, neither light scattering nor direct observation by SEM may be wholly satisfactory. In such cases, XRD can provide information about the average particle (”domain”) size and distribution through line profile analysis. This method, however, is limited to the range of 1 – 200 nm.