“Carbon black, also called charcoal black lamp black, pigment black, soot or black carbon, is a fine particle carbon pigment obtained as soot from the incomplete combustion of many different types of organic materials, such as natural gas, or oil. Carbon black is usually a fine, soft, black powder. It is very stable and unaffected by light, acids and alkalis. It is commonly used in printing and lithograph inks and in Chinese ink sticks. In industry, carbon black is used as a filtration material and a filler /pigment in coatings, rubber, plastics, paints, carbon paper, and crayons. Continue reading
Baking Contrast quantifies lightness of baked crust, crumb and similar applications. Monitoring lot differences in fresh bread and cookies is a typical application but BCU can be applied to monitor browning in any baked product. Continue reading
The ColorFlex EZ (CFEZ) instrument is ideal for measuring certain food products. One such food based products that can be measured using the CFEZ is collagen sausage casings.
Collagen is used as a meat casing because it is safe, versatile, cost effective, and is liked by consumers. Collagen casings are a manufactured product and generally speaking it is easier to control the color over a natural product. By controlling the color of the casing the customer can produce consistent sausages that have the same color, shape, and tenderness which appeals to consumers.
The collagen casings (pictured above) are approximately 1.25 inches to 2 inches. The size and nature of the casings make them an ideal sample for the ColorFlex EZ instrument. The CFEZ instrument is compact, fast, and measures a 1 inch area.
The casings are translucent and need to be backed to ensure consistent measurements; the CFEZ white tile works perfectly for this purpose. A consistent measurement method was obtained by using the largest area of view possible, backing the sample with the white tile, and averaging a total of 3 measurements.
The CFEZ is a robust instrument that is ideal for a wide variety of industries, including food applications. The CFEZ ease of use and area of view make it perfect for measuring these collagen casings in a repeatable manner.
FAQ: “Do you know of a test lab for DDG Color of Dried Distillers Grain?
DDG stands for ‘Dried Distillers Grain”. While its origins are based on evaluation of the residual protein content of wheat and corn for cattle feed that had been used in the distillation of whiskey, bourbon and spirits, it has moved on from distillers to serve the same purpose for the biofuels industry. Continue reading
HunterLab manufactures bench top instruments with two different geometry types: directional 45/0 (or 0/45) and diffuse sphere instruments, as discussed in a previous blog note. A 45/0 directional instrument illuminates the sample at a 45˚ angle from the sample surface and the detector is located 0˚ in line perpendicular to the sample surface. The inverse, 0˚ illumination and detection at 45˚, can also be used and yields equivalent measurements. The MiniScan EZ and ColorFlex EZ instruments are 45/0 instruments and the LabScan XE is a 0/45 instrument. Continue reading
Here is how to think of IQ OQ PQ being applied in general for all HunterLab instruments. Continue reading
FAQ: “My customer has a ColorFlex 45:0 LAV and needs to measure a very small amount of sample in a cup. Do we have a sample cup for small quantities?” Continue reading
FAQ: “How do I read Opacity on my MiniScan EZ (or ColorFlex EZ) instrument?”
To measure opacity you will first need to navigate to the product set up you wish to configure. Once in the product set up you will need to make sure that the standard is set to WORKING. Then navigate to the View you would like to configure. One in the view you will need to set your desired Display, Ill/Obs, and Color Scale. In the Color Index field use the left and right arrows to navigate to the OP (opacity) index.
FAQ: “Is there any way to lock the Product Setups on my MiniScan EZ (or ColorFlex EZ) instrument?”
Setups can be locked by navigating to Global Options from the main menu. In the Global Options menu you should see a Setups Locked field. Scroll down to the Setups Locked field and use the right arrow to select YES. Continue reading
One thing to keep in mind when measuring creams, gels, pastes, and other semi-solid materials is to maintain a consistent sample thickness. One option is to “sandwich” a fixed quanity of your semi-solid material in a suitable clear-bottomed container, so that it can be placed at the port for measurement. Continue reading