Let's Discuss the Different Types of Mixing Systems

Laboratory mixing systems are typically expected to carry out an array of various experiments, but conventional parameters are seldomly appropriate for proprietary applications. Standard mixing systems have innate settings regarding agitation speed (RPMs) and loading capacity (maximum weight, sample container type, etc.). The combination of these attributes presents varying operational considerations and throughput capabilities – from the dimensions of the instrument footprint to the noise levels being generated throughout system use.

Here, Glas-Col offers a brief introduction to its mixing systems to give you the information needed to help decide which one is best-suited to your application.

Homogenizers & Stirrers

Direct application of mechanical force is one of the longest serving methods of sample preparation available to the analytical scientist when homogenizing samples. While it may be time-consuming, mixing systems operating on this well-established principle are used in some of the most progressive biochemical and life sciences applications today.

Homogenizers and stirrers are commonly used in research and development (R&D) cycles for industrial, commercial, and pharmaceutical formulation. They are also trusted for cell disruption and lysis applications, from DNA sequencing to metagenomics.

Rotating Mixing Systems

For the benchtop mixing of heterogeneous samples, rotators are perfect when it comes to the in test and centrifuge tubes. Samples are typically suspended in a chamber or fastened to a disc, which perpetually rotates with 360° of freedom across a vertical axis. This perpetual motion wards off a variety of particle migration phenomena, making sure that immiscible components are completely dispersed.

Due to the design being exceptionally versatile, rotating mixing systems are omnipresent in research applications, from the preparation of homogenous samples to the mixing of blood samples.


At a fundamental level, shakers are developed to recreate the motion of shaking by hand. Although suitable for many mixing applications, this simple back-and-forth motion can be time-consuming and tough to replicate. Reciprocating and nutating shakers are practical in intense, high-throughput environments including laboratories and workshops.

Vortex Mixing Systems

Rather than applying internal stress with a stirrer or pestle, a vortex mixer sets in motion external kinetic force. However, while the concept is wholly similar to previously mentioned systems, vortexing generally provides higher degrees of homogeneity with the capacity to mix orbitally as well as pulse functionalities. It also offers a technique for mixing samples in closed containers, a necessity for chemically-sensitive organic samples.

Vortex mixing systems are ideal for a wide variety of applications in biology and life sciences, from enzyme and protein expression studies to immunochemical research. For additional information on this topic, read Glas-Col’s further literature titled, ‘Vortex Mixer for Bacterial Protein Expressions’.

Mixing Systems from Glas-Col

Glas-Col is a leading supplier of laboratory equipment globally. The company provides a wide range of conventional mixing systems and tailor-made solutions – if the application necessitates a bespoke product.

For further information regarding Glas-Col’s range of mixing systems, simply contact a member of the Glas-Col team today.

This information has been sourced, reviewed and adapted from materials provided by Glas-Col.

For more information on this source, please visit Glas-Col.


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