What is a Refractometer?
A Refractometer is a straight-forward instrument that helps in measuring the concentration of dissolved substances in liquid solutions. It is used primarily in the food, agriculture, chemical, and manufacturing industry.
The first Refractometer was developed by Ernst Abbe in the late 19th century in Germany. These instruments, thus developed, had thermometer fitted inside so as to check the temperature of the fluid being tested for better results. The Refractometer works with the refraction of light, this will be explained at length as we read on. They were invented with the intention to check the purity of substances like oil, water, etc.
About Refractometer and how does it work
Refractometer works on the Principe of the angle of Refraction and takes into consideration the fact that when light enters the liquid it changes direction or causing a bend in the ray of light, the extent of this bend would help us determine the level of impurity in the substance under test. Two Prisms are used to measure and illuminate. The sample to be tested is put between these two Prisms. The illuminating Prism allows the light to enter which reflects off the measuring prism. If the liquid has a high concentration of the dissolved substance, then the refractive index of the prism will be low. Similarly, if the concentration of the dissolved substance is low then the refractive index of the Prism will be high.
Benefits of Refractometers
- A small amount of sample needs to be tested to determine the acceptability of the entire batch.
- The liquid to be checked can be lifted directly from the production source as the meter it has inbuilt temperature control and conversion and can change the temperature accordingly.
- Refractometers come in multiple types and are waterproof in nature, therefore ensuring that they are more long-lasting.
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