The Benefits of Particle Size Analyzers

Malvern Panalytical recently conducted a customer survey in which it asked customers about how they used their Malvern Panalytical laser diffraction particle sizing equipment (Mastersizer and Spraytec) (Figure 1), and which features of the product most appealed to them.

The Mastersizer 3000 and Spraytec laser diffraction particle size analyzers.

Figure 1. The Mastersizer 3000 and Spraytec laser diffraction particle size analyzers.

The Mastersizer is a laboratory laser diffraction particle size measurement system developed for the measurement of suspensions, dry powder, and emulsion samples in the particle size range of 0.01 - 3500 µm. High-speed measurements of particles in aerosols and sprays are offered by the Spraytec laser diffraction system.

Survey Observations

The survey allowed customers to provide critical feedback on Malvern Panalytical’s particle sizing systems.

Some of the observations were:

  • More than 95% respondents used Mastersizer, while a little more than 5% respondents used Spraytec
  • 40% were lab workers involved in research
  • 32% were involved in regular product QC testing
  • 13% were engaged in product development
  • 11% were working in process or production control
  • 4% were in root cause analysis

Most of the respondents were employed in industrial companies offering mineral and chemical products, with roughly a fifth employed in pharmaceutical product development and production.

These Malvern Panalytical products were deployed in the characterization of a wide range of samples, such as emulsions, aerosols and sprays, polymers, biopolymers, colloids and others. However, the largest percentage were used for mixtures and dry powders.

The Requirements of Every Particle Size Analyzer

The respondents were asked to list the key capability that appealed to them the most (Figure 2). About 55% of the respondents listed ease of use as the primary feature for both Mastersizer and Spraytec systems.

The users added that after setup, the analyzers could be used by anyone, irrespective of the operator’s familiarity with the product. Also, users noted the intuitive user interface and "fool proof SOPs" as key aspects for successfully using the analyzers across their organizations.

Survey Responses for the question, "What are the most important capabilities of your Malvern Panalytical particle size analyzer?"

Figure 2. Survey Responses for the question, "What are the most important capabilities of your Malvern Panalytical particle size analyzer?"

With 12% each, reliability and speed were the second most important features of the products. Comments about the speed focused on the speed of analysis, speed of processing, effective sample turnaround, rapid measurements, and all customers agreed that the key to successful use was the ability to obtain rapid results. They were also in agreement that Malvern Panalytical analyzers were highly reliable in daily operations, offering consistent data.

Reliability was key both in terms of the quality and consistency of the data obtained, and the instrument operation. Users confirmed that the Mastersizer and Spraytec particle sizing systems performed just as advertised. It was noted that maintenance was routine and minimal, with comprehensive support from the help desk of Malvern Panalytical and the team of product technical specialists covering every issue.

Most of the users said that they used the machines for several years, with some of them claiming "years of stress free operation." Reliability was also valued when it came to obtaining reliable, precise particle and droplet size distribution results. Customers emphasized that they had a number of users who used the instrument constantly and still received reliable, repeatable and reproducible data.

The versatility of the instruments also impressed customers. The capability to analyze a large number of particle sizes, handle dry and wet samples, and the system’s versatility for routine production testing and research, were all pinpointed. The customers felt that as the instrument could be used for different functions, there was an increase in lab productivity.

The Benefits of Owning a Malvern Panalytical Particle Size Analyzer

For most users in the survey, Malvern Panalytical was the only name that came to mind when they thought of particle sizers. The features that were most useful converted into bottom-line benefits:

  • Improved lab productivity – Ease of use with minimal or no training, saved time and labor costs, and improved lab productivity as well as that of individual users
  • Reduced downtime – Consistent stress-free operation enabled a decrease in the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO), with convenient and cost-effective maintenance to run operations at suitable levels
  • Enhanced data – Consistent, repeatable and reproducible data provided confidence in results and enhancements in both product quality and process consistency
  • Improved analysis – The versatility to precisely measure an extensive range of particle sizes, the handling of both dry and wet processes, and functioning as a QC test system or a research tool, enabled users to achieve the most from their investment in Malvern Panalytical products

Ultimately, if a customer is really satisfied with a product, he will willingly recommend the product to a peer. An astounding 98% of Mastersizer and Spraytec users who answered the survey stated that they would recommend Malvern Panalytical’s products.

Benefits of Being a Malvern Panalytical Customer

Further to the excellent products offered by Malvern Panalytical for particle sizing, Malvern Panalytical offers several value-added services. The customers specifically highlighted the following:

  • Explicit, easy-to-understand advice and help in the software
  • Opportunities for training and education - both on-line and in-person
  • Rapid and responsive global customer technical support by phone and over the internet
  • Commitment to timely customer communications with regards to new scientific approaches, technologies, upcoming events and educational and training opportunities
  • Rapid dissemination of software updates
  • Access to an extensive knowledge base of application information via the Malvern Panalytical web site

This information has been sourced, reviewed and adapted from materials provided by Malvern Panalytical.

For more information on this source, please visit Malvern Panalytical.

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