Since centrifuges are application-oriented products, it is necessary for laboratory professionals to have adequate knowledge to select the right centrifuge to deal with their applications. Seven questions need to be considered to determine the correct centrifuge for an application.
NuWind NU-C200R bench top centrifuge. Image credit: NuAire
These questions are helpful in identifying which product category is appropriate and which model in the chosen category is suitable. Further, accessories that can increase the capabilities of a centrifuge or enable it to carry out a function crucial to a needed application also have to be identified.
There are a wide variety of commercially available centrifuges, including blood bank centrifuges, ultra-centrifuges, high-speed centrifuges, floor-standing centrifuges, bench top centrifuges, and microcentrifuges. There is also a wide choice of accessories available for each type of centrifuge.
NU-MLX-106 Mini centrifuge. Image credit: NuAire
Accessories such as rotors not only provide new capabilities to a centrifuge, but also allow it to be tailored for a specific application. Swing-out rotors with different inserts allow for the spinning of buckets consisting of sample tubes of many capacities at varying speeds. Therefore, selecting appropriate accessories for a centrifuge is also equally important.
NU-B500 swing out buckets. Image credit: NuAire
This article discusses seven questions which are helpful in selecting an appropriate centrifuge for a given application. NuAire supplies a complete line of centrifuges and accessories as well as a comprehensive range of laboratory equipment to address any requirement.
NU-RX500 swing out rotor. Image credit: NuAire
What is the maximum speed you need to achieve?
The category of centrifuge is determined based on the speed in terms of Relative Centrifugal Force (RCF) or revolutions per minute (RPM). All centrifuges contain motors to produce force, rotors mounted on the motor shaft, and/or inserts and buckets where tubes are positioned.
NuAire, a major laboratory products manufacturer in the US for over four decades, manufactures and supplies high performance centrifuges. The company sells a majority of its centrifuges for use in cell culture or standard blood processing applications in research laboratories, clinical, university, or small pharmacy settings using a speed of 4500-5000rpm.
What and how much will be spun?
It is necessary to know the size, type and count of tubes to be spun in a cycle in order to identify the volume and help the laboratory professional to select a specific centrifuge model and/or accessory.
Microtubes with a volume of 1.5 to 2.0 ml can be spun by micro-centrifuges, whereas large centrifuges are capable of spinning up to 9 liters of volume – nearly 1000 times more – for instance, six 1.5-liter bottles can be spun for bio-processing applications. Centrifuges spinning at low speeds are required for 5, 7, or 10 ml or 12x75 blood collection tubes
Image credit: NuAire
How much space is available?
Knowing the answer to the question how much space is available can help select the specific model in a category, whether it is bench-top or floor model. Since space constraint is a limitation to most laboratories, lab managers seek a centrifuge with the smallest footprint but with the largest capacity.
A new line of centrifuges has been developed by NuAire in the past two years to specifically expand the capacity in the same or smaller footprint. The increased bowl size enables the NuWind line to handle more volume.
NuWind centrifuges feature both the external panel and internal safety barrier in a single one-piece system, providing better safety features and more capacity within a smaller space owing to maximized bowl size within the centrifuge’s footprint.
Increased capacity bowl. Image credit: NuAire
How versatile is the system? Will it handle current and future needs?
Previously, centrifuges were developed only for specific applications. Separate tools had to be bought by users for low- and high-speed operations. Since the industry became matured, “all-in-one” or “multi-application” centrifuges equipped with several functions in a single system that can operate at different speed and features several rotors to handle several different protocols.
Image credit: NuAire
It was challenging to remove rotors until about five years ago, necessitating the use of specialized tools for manual removal and installation of each rotor. It was necessary to use special procedures to securely lock and properly balance the rotor to avoid any damage caused by vibration during high-speed operations.
NuAire introduced a simple hand-operated method called “ClickSpin” to change rotors without the need for specialized tools. The rotor can be easily removed by users by twisting the red dial counter clockwise. To install, a rotor should be aligned with the rotor shaft and with a gentle downward force over the shaft the rotor will lock creating an audible “CLICK” sound.
How easy is operation?
NuAire’s centrifuges are equipped with touch screens, enabling users to control parameters through an easy-to-use interface. The user-friendly NuAire centrifuge software enables creating different user levels with improved software controls and varying levels of permissions.
Image credit: NuAire
Up to 100 programs can be saved in NuAire systems with the option to lock each program with a password combination of buttons, preventing data loss due to accidental change or deletion.
How important is reliability and serviceability?
Although centrifuges are reliable, they need to be serviced occasionally. For quick servicing of its centrifuges, all key mechanical and electrical components are located in the control center by NuAire. It is possible install a new control center if any part other than the motor faces a problem.
Image credit: NuAire
The control center stores the history of operation, saved programs and user details. Restoring this data to a newly installed control center is easy. This simplicity of design expedites repair, isolating most issues to either motor, or the control center. Both of which can be quickly replaced.
How is the power in my facility?
With NuAire’s unique Power Factor Control (PFC) technology, constant power can be delivered to centrifuge components by correcting power variances.
Performance fluctuations can occur in internal components of a centrifuge based on the quality and reliability of electrical power, causing a minor disturbance such as speed variation and serious disturbance such as a tripped breaker and a sudden power loss. In both cases, work reliability and repeatability can be compromised.
Quality and Service
For more than 40 years, NuAire has been committed to bringing you the highest-quality, most dependable laboratory products on the market.
We are universally recognized as one of the world's leading providers of reliable equipment for the most demanding environments, including Biological Safety Cabinets, CO2 Incubators,Laminar Air Flow workstations, Ultra Low Temperature Freezers, Centrifuges,Animal Transfer Stations, Pharmacy Compounding Isolators, Polypropylene Fume Hoods, Polypropylene Casework, and a variety of complementary products and systems.
You can depend on our products to feature brilliant but practical design, and we pay keen attention to every step of the production process, from fabrication to assembly to thorough testing. As a NuAire customer, you can also rely on us for outstanding value and dependable service - the cornerstones of our reputation as the leading provider of laboratory products internationally.
Committed to Your Success
At NuAire, we create our high-quality products with your success in mind. This means that if you purchase a piece of laboratory equipment from us, we want you to be completely happy while using it.
NuAire will work hand-in-hand with you in order to ensure that your experience using our product meets your standards, and if you encounter any issues or difficulties along the way, we'll help you work through them until you are 100% satisfied. Our philosophy is that we succeed only when you succeed - and we are committed to working hard to ensure you achieve your goals.
Made in America
At NuAire, you can depend on us for being a company that is "Made in America." Our Airflow Products, CO2 Incubators, and Polypropylene Products are manufactured at three locations in Minnesota.
With over 300,000 square feet of manufacturing space, including a state-of-the-art robotic sheet metal facility, NuAire is able to provide employment to 300 Minnesota families and 60 North American sales representatives, and our manufacturing labor is 100% American.
We also purchase our materials from over 500 American vendors, each operating principally in the United States. More than 60% of the raw materials, parts, and supplies for our products originates in the U.S., and an average of 20-30% of the stainless steel flats we use are made from recycled metal.
While NuAire is an American company, we also have several international business partnerships, which allow us to better serve you, the global laboratory community. NuAire recently started manufacturing a line of Biological Safety Cabinets in China in order to supply products to the Asian markets via Techcomp, Ltd., a publicly traded Chinese company.
In 2014, NuAire founded an international partnership with Hitachi Koki in order to supply high performance centrifuges to the North American market. NuAire can now provide customers with the sales and service of Hitachi High Speed, Ultra, and Micro Ultracentrifuges.
With several other partnerships with a variety of European and Asian companies, we have sold over 100,000 biological safety cabinets to customers in 150 countries and have equipment located on all 7 continents.
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