Viscosity refers to the measure of the resistance of a fluid to flow arising from the attractive forces between the molecules of the fluid. Viscometers measure the energy required to move a body through a fluid which is directly related to the degree to which that fluid resists flow i.e., its viscosity.
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Use the following decision tree to help narrow your equipment selection.
Do you require a benchtop or in-line viscometer?
Benchtop viscometers are commonly used in Q/C and testing laboratories to measure the viscosity of various liquids, pastes, gels, and homogenous mixtures.
Do you require a rotational or kinematic viscometer?
Rotational viscometers measure the torque required to rotate a disk or bob in a fluid at a known speed. Common rotational viscometers include Couette, Searle and cone and plate systems.
What type of materials are you measuring?
Low viscosity materials include inks, oils and solvents and have viscosity measurements under 6,000,000 cP
Medium viscosity materials include creams, paints and food and typically have measured viscosities up to 40,000,000 cP
High viscosity materials include gels, glues and epoxies. These materials have viscosities up to 80,000,000 cP.
Very High Viscosity
Very high viscosity materials include asphalt, caulking and molasses. These materials have viscosities up to 320,000,000 cP.
Kinematic viscometers utilize a falling or rolling ball to measure the density of liquids according to Stokes' law.
In-line viscometers are used in process control to continuously measure the viscosity of liquids without the need for separate sample collection.