There are a wide variety of principles of measurement for measuring particle size distribution. And, there is a larger number of analyzers on the market that were developed based on these principles of measurement.
Amongst these, particle size analyzers that adopt the "laser diffraction/scattering method" as the measurement pinciple started to evolve rapidly from the early 1990's onwards due to advances made in computer and sensor technology and ingenious devices incorporated into these systems.
Particle size analyzers that adopt the "laser diffraction/scattering method" are called "laser diffraction particle size analyzers." Some manufacturers call these analyzers "laser diffraction/scattering particle size analyzers" or adopt other names for them.
Features of laser diffraction particle size analyzers include:
- Measurement range extends from several tens of nanometers through to millimeters, and measurement can be performed within a single range.
- Measurement times are short, and changes in particle size distribution can be monitored in real time.
- Both wet and dry measurement are supported.
Because of outstanding features such as these, they are currently the mainstream particle size analyzers in use.
However, there are issues that cannot be overcome simply by advances in analyzers alone.
In reality, various users at a wide range of sites use a mix of new and old types of analyzers made by numerous manufacturers that adopt various principles of measurement. This is a very typical state of affairs with almost all products, yet it is also a factor causing several problems in particle size analyzers.
Strictly speaking, particle size distribution is dependent on principle of measurement, and different "particle size distribution" will be measured if the principle of measurement differs even though the same term of "particle size distribution" is used. The issue of transferability of data between manufacturers and models also must be considered. Even now, these issues stand in the way as limitations in particle size distribution measurement.
Factoring in this state of affairs, I'd like to answer the main questions you might have about particle size analyzers, in particular, laser diffraction particle size analyzers.