Ultrasonic Cleaning Laboratory Instruments

Ultrasonic Cleaning Laboratory Instruments

Already used for sample prep and other tasks, a benchtop ultrasonic cleaner is the perfect tool for cleaning a wide range of laboratory instruments made of glass, porcelain, ceramics, plastics, and metals. Ultrasonic cavitations’ advantage over manual and mechanical cleaning is that it is thorough, it accesses all surfaces of immersed instruments, and it reduces breakage and associated replacement costs.

Cleaning is accomplished using biodegradable  ultrasonic cleaning solution concentrates with formulations selected based on items being cleaned and contaminants being removed. But the process is the same. The ultrasonic cleaner’s generator-powered transducers created billions of microscopic bubbles in the cleaning solution that implode violently on contact with surfaces being cleaned to blast away tenacious contaminants. While “violent” the process is so fast that laboratory instruments are not damaged.

A Lab Instrument Ultrasonic Cleaner

A highly popular ultrasonic cleaner used in laboratories is the Elmasonic PH series such as the 3.5 gallon PH350EL. Available in several cleaning tank capacities the PH series’ features support a multitude of cleaning and sample prep tasks including cleaning, intense cleaning, dissolving and degassing, and is a great choice for cleaning laboratory instruments. For this task it is operated in the sweep mode to provide uniform distribution of cleaning action in the bath, avoiding what are called hot spots and areas of low or no cavitation action.

Other features include a heater and timer displaying set and actual values, a pulse mode for removing tenacious contaminants, dual frequency 37 or 80 kHz or auto-switch between the two, and adjustable power from 30 to 100% to match cleaning tasks.

Lab Instrument Cleaning Solutions

A number of Elma lab clean formulations are available and are selected based on what is being cleaned and contaminants being removed. Contact our specialists for recommendations.

Cleaning procedures are provided with the formulation. Solutions are prepared by adding water to fill the tank half full, adding the recommended amount of Elma lab clean then filling the tank. Activate the degas mode to mix the solution and drive off trapped air.

When you are ready to clean set the heater for the recommended temperature and set the timer. Cleaning will automatically start when the set temperature is reached.

Place items to be cleaned in the basket in such a way that the solution reaches all surfaces when the basket is immersed. It may be necessary to reposition certain instruments during the cycle. If so remove the basket; do not reach into the solution.

When you are finished inspect and rinse with DI water or other approved methods, then dry.

For recommendations on cleaning solution formulations or other questions regarding cleaning lab instruments contact the iUltrasonic professionals.

More About the Author

Dr. Rachel Kohn has extensive experience in developing technology-based business opportunities. Prior to founding Tovatech, she successfully built international sales of novel analytical instrumentation for Smiths Detection as a Global Account Manager in the Life Sciences division. Dr. Kohn’s prior positions include Director of Business Development at Photon-X, a telecom component start-up, Project Manager at Cardinal Health, and Business Director at the Medical Device Concept Laboratory, a nonprofit research institution focused on development of biomaterials and implantable medical devices. In addition, Dr. Kohn held various positions at Hoechst Celanese Corporation, including Marketing Manager, Project Team Leader, Business Analyst, and Senior Research Scientist. She has authored 37 patents and publications based on laboratory research in diverse fields such as advanced drug delivery systems, polymer films and membranes, optical disks, and polysaccharides. Dr. Kohn has a B.A. in Chemistry from Barnard College and a Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from M.I.T.