Understanding Centrifuges in the Laboratory

Centrifuges are essential instruments widely used by laboratories across the world. Within these labs having safe, efficient sample processes coupled with a reliable, high-throughput centrifuge is necessary for getting fast results. In this article we are going to discuss what is centrifugation as well as some key purchasing points to remember and introduce a few types of centrifuges that are designed to help your research.

What is Centrifugation?

 Centrifugation is the process of using a strong rotational pull known as centrifugal force to separate substances of different densities through the use of a centrifuge. As the centrifuge spins, the more-dense substances of the mixture move away from the center of the centrifuge, while the less-dense substances (the sediment) of the mixture move toward the center of the centrifuge. This whole process causes the sediment to collect at the bottom of the sample vessel while the remaining substance (the supernate) is either poured out or removed with a Pasteur pipette.

Key Purchasing Points:

 When in the market for a centrifuge, there are a few key points you need to keep in mind to make sure you choose the right centrifuge for your lab. First, you need to consider your present and future cell culture and clinical sedimentation applications. You then need to consider whether it is to separate DNA and protein precipitates or the sedimentation of cells, cell organelles and cell fragments to find a centrifuge that meets those protocols. The next key points to keep in mind are the sample size (micro or macro) and number of samples (low to high volume) that you will be working with. Then you will want to look at the type of centrifuge (micro, high-speed, ultra, etc.), types of rotors (fixed angle, swinging bucket, etc.), max. speed (500 to 150,000+ rpm) and max. RCF (2,000 to 1,000,000+ xg) needed to perform your separation tasks. Once you have narrowed down all of these specifications, finding the right centrifuge for your lab will be much easier.

Some Types of Centrifuges:

Laboratory centrifuges come in a variety of different types designed for different separation applications.  Let’s take a closer look at the high-speed centrifuges and ultracentrifuges.

High-Speed Centrifuges

High-speed centrifuges, also known as superspeed centrifuges, are designed to reach high speeds while handling larger sample sizes at high angular velocities. They are ideal for a wide range of separation tasks used in the cell culture and clinical sectors involving DNA, RNA, viruses, proteins and more. Performing such separations can be made effortlessly with the Hitachi CR22N High-Speed Refrigerated Centrifuge from NuAire. The CR22N floor standing model is a high throughput centrifuge that provides reliable performance while reaching speeds of up to 22,000 rpm (55,200 xg).

NuAire Hitachi CR22N High-Speed Refrigerated Centrifuge
Hitachi Centrifuge Top View

Top View

Hitachi Centrifuge Front View

Front View

Hitachi Centrifuge Side View

Side View

 

 

 

 

 

It has advanced technology including a large LCD color touch screen for a user-friendly operation, self-locking rotor system without the need for tools, an automatic rotor identification to optimize running conditions, and a rotor management system to monitor a rotor’s serial number, total accumulated operating hours and total number of operation runs.

 

Color Touch Screen LCD

Color Touch Screen LCD

Hitachi Centrifuge

Self-Locking Rotor System

 

 

 

 

 

 

The safety features of the CR22N include a non-contact imbalance detection system to continuously measure oscillation and detect abnormal vibrations plus an automatic rotor cover detector to prevent against any unexpected accidents. The newly re-engineered drive unit maximizes capacity of 6L for bottles, tubes, or microplates while the sleek body, compact construction and slim footprint allows the CR22N to fit nicely into any laboratory.

This high-speed centrifuge is also equipped with an inverter refrigeration system providing highly efficient temperature control of the rotor, while maintaining the maximum speed of any standard rotor.

All Standard Rotors Maintained at +4°C

All Standard Rotors Maintained at +4°C

This unit comes complete with a large selection of innovative rotors, including fixed angle, swinging bucket, and made-to-order, giving this centrifuge the ability to tackle any high-speed separation application.

Ultracentrifuges

Ultracentrifuges are the most powerful type of centrifuge. They are designed to reach exceptionally high speeds (well beyond those of high-speed centrifuges) while handling larger sample sizes. They are ideal for a wide range of separation tasks used in cell culture, biochemistry and nano-material fields involving proteins, DNA, RNA, metal nano-colloid and more. In order to perform these sample processes, you need a state-of-the-art engineered centrifuge that provides outstanding performance and unmatched reliability, similar to that of the Hitachi CP100WX Ultracentrifuge from NuAire. This powerful machine is a general purpose, floor standing ultracentrifuge designed to accelerate your separation protocols more efficiently than ever before.

NuAire Hitachi CP100WX Preparative Centrifuge

cp100wx-right

The CP100WX features advanced technology including a non-contact imbalance detection system to continuously measure oscillation and detect abnormal vibrations, a self-locking rotor system to prevent against any unexpected accident, and a rotor life management (RLM) system to automatically maintain rotor logging history, maximizing rotor life.

Imbalance Protection System

Imbalance Protection System

Self-Locking Rotor System

Self-Locking Rotor System

Rotor Life Management

Rotor Life Management

 

 

 

 

The electronic control system with large LCD touch-screen, user management system with name identification, and the recently reduced table height, all allow for an exceptionally easy operation. The CP100WX’s drive unit is highly efficient and compact maximizing capacity of 1,380ml yet is powerful enough to reach a maximum acceleration of 100,000 rpm (803,000 xg) in 5 minutes.

Electronic Control System

Electronic Control System

User Management

User Management

Faster Acceleration and RCF

Faster Acceleration and RCF

 

 

 

 

 

This unit comes complete with a variety of standard and unique rotors including fixed angle, neo angle, vertical, swinging bucket, zonal and continuous flow, all designed to help you perform any large scale separation tasks at rapid speeds.

Micro Ultracentrifuges 

Like Ultracentrifuges, Micro Ultracentrifuges are designed to reach exceptionally high speeds, but can only handle smaller sample sizes. They are ideal for a wide range of separation and purification tasks involving protein, lipoprotein, cell organelles, DNA and RNA as well as carbon nano tubes and other nano-sizes particles. Having a high-tech centrifuge with great performance, quiet operation and space-saving design is necessary to perform these crucial tasks; the Hitachi CS series micro ultracentrifuges from NuAire offers just that plus much more. Included in the CS series are the Hitachi CS150NX Micro Ultracentrifuge which is a compact, benchtop model perfect for frequent usage or routine work and the Hitachi CS150FNX Micro Ultracentrifuge which is a floor-standing model perfect for central and/or shared laboratories. With a maximum capacity of 150ml, the vacuumed drive unit of these powerful machines is capable of reaching record-breaking speeds up to 150,000rpm (1,050,000 xg) in just 90 seconds while keeping the operational noise level down to a minimum (45 dpA).

NuAire Hitachi CS150NX Benchtop Micro Ultracentrifuge
Top View

Top View

Front View

Front View

Side View

Side View

 

 







NuAire Hitachi CS150FNS Floor Standing Micro Ultracentrifuge
Top View

Top View

Front View

Front View

Side View

Side View

These ultra-durable centrifuges feature some of the most advanced technology including a reliable vacuumed drive unit backed by a 5 year warranty, a self-locking rotor system without the use of tools, and a non-contact imbalance protection system to continuously measure oscillation and detect abnormal vibrations.

Powerful Imbalance Protection

Powerful Imbalance Protection

Self-Locking Rotor System

Self-Locking Rotor System

 

 

 

 

 

 

The stress-free operation of these centrifuges is achieved through a large LCD touch-screen, a real-time control function for quick timer setting, and an actual run timer which helps to precisely control the net run-time and obtain high-reproducibility separation.

LCD Touch-Screen

LCD Touch-Screen

Run Screen

Run Screen

 

 

 

 

 

 

These powerful machines come with a vast selection of standard rotors including fixed angle, neo angle, swinging bucket and vertical, all able to accommodate any ultrafast, micro separation protocol.

Regardless of sample size, these sophisticated centrifuges are bound to increase your sample throughput while shortening run times, making your sample protocols more efficient than ever before. If you’re interested in one of these centrifuges or centrifuges in general, or are unsure of which unit is right for your application, please contact us to speak to a Centrifuge Specialist at 1.800.521.0754, or click here to email us.