How to Choose a Spectrophotometer

spectrophotometer

What is a spectrophotometer?

Spectrometers, or spectrophotometers, are analytical instruments used to identify or confirm the chemical species, chemical structure, or concentration of substances in a sample. Spectrophotometers will emit an energy source to pass through a solution and measure light intensity at different wavelengths. If the solution is high in molecular concentration, then more light will be absorbed. In most cases, a sample submitted for spectrometric analysis must be very pure to avoid poor or contaminated results. Spectrometers are generally comprised of a light or energy source (typically a lamp), a filter (or monochromator) to set desired wavelengths of which to read, a place for cuvettes or blanks, and a radiation detector (or phototube) to convert the energy received during the experiment into a measurable signal.

Important criteria to consider when selecting a spectrophotometer:

  • Detection limits
  • The density, shape, or size of the product you wish to measure
  • Wavelength range
  • Analytical working range
  • Sample throughput (single sample vs. multi-sample)
  • Data quality
  • Cost of instrument and associated consumables
  • Customizable and/or pre-configured method options
  • Measurement time
  • Footprint of instrument

Learn more. Read our Spectroscopy Selection Guide

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spectrophotometer

2 Comments on "How to Choose a Spectrophotometer"

  1. Hi, I am writing to you with the hope that you may be able to help me with my research.
    I like to start a quality water lab to check the tap water quality. I live in Victoria, BC. Canada, and to be truthful with you I don’t know what equipment I need for this lab.
    Please help if you can

    • Antylia Scientific Blog Team | January 3, 2023 at 9:27 am | Reply

      Hi Mike:
      I will forward your email to our technical experts at Environmental Express. Thanks!

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