Lab Shakers and Stirrers: Movement for Successful Science

Cole-Parmer stirring hot plate lab equipment

Specific samples need certain movement

Hand shaking a sample was the first and only means of shaking samples before shakers were invented. Now, there are many ways to get the job done. Jayne Bates, technical support manager, Antylia Scientific, EMEA provided her expertise on the subject in an article to Lab Manager. Here is what she had to say:

Cole-Parmer orbital shaker

Cole-Parmer orbital shaker

“The most popular motion is orbital shaking followed by a rocking motion. Orbital shaking is used for culture and growth of a number of microorganisms in a variety of different vessels. These shakers can stand alone or be part of an incubator, to keep the cells at the right temperature as they shake.”

Cole-Parmer makes a range of orbital shakers. A given application often works best with a specific shaker motion. For example, rockers are used in molecular biology and biochemistry labs for washing gels and membranes and also for applications like binding assays and hybridizations.

Motion for samples

Cole-Parmer Tube Roller Shaker

Cole-Parmer tube roller shaker

Jane also explained that specific samples need specific motion. You need to know what motion you need to use for your sample. For example, orbital, reciprocating, and wrist-action devices all can vigorously shake a sample. And, the the type of holder for the sample must be considered.

“For example, a tube roller, although giving a gentle rocking motion, is not suitable for containers with fragile gels inside, which are better placed on a rocking platform. Likewise, tubes need to be held in place while mixing or shaking to prevent them from moving around.

Read the entire article, The Many Ways to Shake Samples, in Lab Manager.
Need a shaker?

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