Moisture Analysis within a Fraction of a Second

Microwave resonance technology enables direct measurement results.

Fast, precise and flexible: the LMA300P presented by the laboratory equipment provider Sartorius is a new moisture analyzer that operates based on microwave resonance technology. This procedure offers users two advantages to start off with in measuring the moisture of pourable and granulated products. For one, it enables exceptionally fast measurement in less than one second. For another, this technology is non-destructive; i.e., the sample is retained in its original condition and can be used for other subsequent tests. Moreover, because preparation of a sample is not required in most cases, the LMA300P is among the fastest moisture analyzers on the market.

The LMA300P can be used for nearly any pourable and granulated products as well as viscous liquids, such as whitewash and other similar materials – its major areas of use are incoming quality tests and in-process control. Unlike in near infrared spectroscopy, changes in the color and surface structure of the sample, as can frequently occur, for instance, in natural raw materials, does not have any effect on calibration or thus on the measured result in microwave resonance technology. In addition, the microwave resonance method is not limited to measurement of the surface moisture; rather, it also determines the core moisture thanks to its operating principle. The measuring range is between approx. 0.1 – 85 % moisture. In measurement using microwave resonance technology, a harmonic electromagnetic resonator field is built up by a microwave generator in a sensor (applicator). When the applicator is filled with a sample, the water in the sample interferes with the oscillation behavior (resonance) of the microwave, or interacts with the resonance field, changing the height and width of the resonance frequency peak. Based on calibration previously carried out, the moisture analyzer calculates the moisture of the sample. The basic analyzer calibration required can be done by the classic oven drying method or using an infrared moisture analyzer from the Sartorius MA series.

Thanks to its fast measurement and low maintenance requirements, microwave resonance technology is also excellently suited for use in online processes. In addition to the lab moisture analyzer for offline analysis, Sartorius also offers this microwave resonance technology for continuous measurement in production processes. The user can choose a customized solution from a wide range of sensors as well as control and evaluation electronic units.

The LMA300P is a modular-designed system consisting of a control and evaluation unit, LMA300PA, and a resonator module, LMA300PR. This modular design allows a different resonator type to be used, enabling the analyzer to be easily adapted to customer-specific applications.

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