pH is a logarithmic measurement of the acid or base levels in a substance. It stands for “potential of hydrogen” or “power of hydrogen.” The more hydrogen ions are present in a substance, the lower the pH. The pH scale ranges from 0 to 14, with 0 being a very acidic substance and 14 being a very alkaline substance.pH testing equipment varies from simple paper strips to digital pH meters. Paper strips change color according to the pH of the substance, but the precision of paper strips in measuring pH is low.
Digital pH meters measure the voltage of a solution and determine the concentration of hydrogen ions from that voltage. Understanding the chemical makeup of a substance is necessary in many industries, from agriculture to pharmaceuticals to beverage manufacturing.
Using pH testing equipment to automate the pH measurement process can give you a competitive advantage.
pH Measurement Applications
Measuring the pH of water is one of the most common applications of pH testing. The supply of drinking water relies on pH testing to check that water does not have impurities. Environmental water is also evaluated with pH testing equipment to monitor environmental changes.
Agriculture relies on pH testing to check soil quality or soil composition. Soil pH levels determine which plants can grow and which fertilizers are appropriate. Crops cannot absorb nutrients in extreme pH soils.
In the food industry, pH readers help manufacturers ensure the quality and ratio of the ingredients. For example, milk needs to be within a target acidity range to make yogurt and cheese. Wineries use pH testing to ensure that wine is not susceptible to bacterial overgrowth.
In medicine, pH meters are used to test blood samples for acidosis or alkalosis. Measuring pH is important in the pharmaceutical industry to maintain CFR 21 Part 11 compliance.
To maintain compliance, pH measurement software needs to maintain an audit trail.
pH Testing Equipment: What’s available?
Save Time with Automated pH Meters
Automated pH testing equipment will help your lab save time and reduce human error in recording pH test results. A benchtop pH meter that can read data from a standard microplate at room temperature can increase your pH testing throughput, freeing up time for other tasks. Choose an automated benchtop pH meter that can handle volumes as low as 75 ul in half-area 96-well microplates.
Account for Heat Changes with Temperature Compensation
The measured pH level of a solution will change at different temperatures. Using a pH meter with temperature compensation allows your lab to test a solution at various temperatures, ensuring confidence in the performance of your product no matter the temperature. Choose a pH meter that allows samples to be heated and measured automatically, without requiring a second tool.
Integrate pH Readers into Your Workflow
pH testing equipment can be integrated into an automated workflow in your laboratory. Combining other digital lab tools with digital pH meters can allow you to assess a microplate across a range of chemical and biological metrics. A robotic reagent dispenser can be used to dispense liquid into the wells of a plate prior to pH testing.
At Hudson Robotics, you will discover a wide range of laboratory automation tools to make your workflow more efficient. Click here to schedule a consultation today.