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Types Of Laboratory Balances and When to Use Them

Aug 11,2021 by Edulab

Balances are a crucial piece of kit for a laboratory. They work to perfectly measure small objects down to an extremely granular level, which is essential in a lab setting. Many balances can measure as precisely as 0.1mg, making them a perfect option for very exact requirements.

The work that is completed in a laboratory, whether in an education setting or not, is all about precision. While all balances are able to measure small numbers perfectly, there are various different types to consider. Each type is best suited to a different application and knowing when to use each is critical.

What is a Compact Balance?

A compact balance is a type of professional weighing balance which is particularly compact in size. Due to their small nature, compact balances are portable, making them great for use in the lab or out in the field. Despite being smaller than other types of weighing equipment, compact balances are equally as accurate and precise as their larger counterparts.

Today, most measuring kits are digital and come equipped with a stainless steel weighing pan. Stainless steel is usually the standard because it is able to withstand all substances and is very easy to clean after use.

Also known as portable balances, these devices are most often used for field work or in applications where convenience is key. They are built to be very durable, which is important because they are heavily used and transported to various locations.

If you are looking for a user-friendly and efficient balance which is also portable, then a compact balance could be the perfect option.

With Over 70 Years of Innovation, Analytical Balances Are Still Going Strong!

Many technicians choose analytical balances because of their ability to measure mass right down to sub-milligram ranges. This piece of kit offers extremely accurate and precise results, perfect for laboratories where exactness is key.

Due to their sensitive nature, analytical balances can be overly susceptible to their environment. To counteract this, the weighing pan is often isolated in a temperature controlled, enclosed environment. This helps to protect samples from particles, dust, air currents and more.

Analytical balances are often used in laboratories with a lot of equipment around because they offer great protection from electrical and mechanical interference. Unlike traditional weighing equipment, analytical balances work by calculating the force needed to offset the mass, as opposed to the actual mass.

Almost all labs will need analytical scales to hand at some point, but they should only be used by those who are trained and knowledgeable about how they work. This kind of kit also requires regular maintenance and calibration.

The Precision Balance “Commercial Boom” Began in 3000 BC

Wow that’s a long time ago. Originally created by the Egyptians to facilitate establishing a way to cost goods, like liquids and grains, which couldn’t be counted per unit, weighing equipment of this type is probably the most common because they offer accurate results and are easy to use. Precision balances are available in a range of different capacities, so you can find the perfect option for your laboratory.

It is no surprise that precision balances are extremely precise in their outputs. It’s literally in the name! As well as being incredibly accurate and precise, this kind of equipment offers a steady output even in very diverse conditions. Unlike other kinds of balances, precision balances are far less likely to provide faulty readings during temperature fluctuations.

The many benefits of precision balances have made them a top choice among many industries. In particular, this piece of kit is commonly found in medical and pharmaceutical applications, where exact precision is critical.

If you often need to weigh varied balances, then this equipment is a great choice as they can handle anything from a few kilograms to several hundred grams.

Don’t Forget About Microbalances And Semimicrobalances

If you need to weigh out incredibly small masses, then microbalances are the best option for your laboratory. They can weigh down to one-hundredth of a milligram and offer the highest readability and precision of all kinds of weighing equipment.

These highly sensitive devices can detect even the smallest increment and so they are most commonly used for specialised applications. You will often find microbalances used for coating measurements, incineration, spillage quantity checking procedures and other exacting applications.

Only The Best Will Do

Here at EduLab, we stock a wide range of balances to suit all your laboratory needs. Whether you need weighing equipment for a university lab, a school setting or something else entirely, we have got an option perfect for you.

If you are still unsure which type of balance you require for your lab, get in touch with our team today. Our experts can recommend the best balances to suit your requirements and provide specialist advice based on your weighing needs.