The density meter, also called the specific gravity meter, is an instrument used in laboratories and factories to measure the density of liquid samples. Of the many types of density meters available, the most popular and reliable version is the one based on oscillation of the U-tube. The underlying principle in this density meter is Archimedes’ principle in combination with microelectronics technology.


How does a digital density meter work?

The main component of a digital density meter is a U-tube. The liquid sample is injected into the U-tube and is subjected to excitation. The frequency of oscillation is measured by a piezoelectric or electromagnetic sensor.The frequency and duration of vibration enable determination of sample density. Since the vibration frequency and density have a linear relationship, measuring the vibration frequency of the oscillating U-tube gives you an accurate value of density.

KEM’s DA-130N

Kyoto Electronics Manufacturing Co., Ltd. manufacture their own line of portable instruments in Japan, with the portable density meter being an important product. The portable density meter, named DA-130N, is widely used by many major food producing companies because of its compact and ingenious design.

The DA-130N can be used to analyze liquids with a viscosity of up to 2000 mPa*s. It has a port through which samples can be injected into the U-tube by means of a syringe. Being a microprocessor-controlled system, it weighs just over 350 gms with a working principle that is approved by the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM). 

Calibrating a portable density meter

Calibrating any instrument is a must, especially when used for quality control. Calibrating your instrument helps you take note of any error that would have crept into your instrument as a result of wear and tear over the years.

Calibration is the process of comparing a known measurement, called the standard, with the measurement obtained using your instrument at hand. In the case of calibrating a portable density meter, the standard in most cases is distilled water. On dropping a few drops of distilled water onto the prism, the LCD display in the instrument must show a reading of 0.997 g/cm3, which is the density of distilled water.

DA-130N feature highlights

Displays measurement of density, specific gravity, temperature compensated density, specific gravity, percentage of Brix, alcohol concentration, sulfuric acid concentration, API degree, Baume degree, Plato degree, and Degrees proof.

Operation can be performed in a single hand.

Separate housing of electronics which protects them from volatile samples and fumes from acids.

Auto-inactivity detection, which increases the life time of batteries. 

In-built data storage of up to 1100 values. 

Option to export data to personal computer via IrDA.

Uses of portable density meters

Quality of petroleum and fuels.

Analysis of volatile liquid samples. 

Testing of batteries.


Beverages | Food Testing | Petroleum | Chemical products |Pharmaceuticals |Alcoholic beverages |Battery acids

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RUDOLPH DENSITYMETER DDM RANGE: All the models of the DDM range are totally automatic, digital and have a built-in, touch-sensitive screen. They can control the temperature of the sample through electronic heating and cooling – Peltier method. The VideoView which is patented in the name of Rudolph comes with the basic unit. The entire U-tube is also scanned with a 10X camera. This ensures even the smallest bubbles to be magnified 10 times and the images are shown live in the screen. The range is between 0 – 3 g/cm3. The min volume of sample required is 1ml. The systems are equipped with 5 USB Ports, 2 RS232 Ports, Ehternet Port for Network Connection, Keyboard, Barcode Scanner, Mouse, Network capabilities.

They have a built-in 8GB Non-removable Compact Flast Internal Memory and the entire system would be driven by Embedded Win 7 OS. With calibration in one temperature the system works throughout the temperature range.

Models 2910 & 2911 can also be equipped with a 21CFR Part 11 module and it is easily enabled through the digital touch screen and come with either NIST or UKAS traceable standards.

The differences between the various models lie in the resolution, repeatability and accuracy.

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