2012 Centrifuge Product Survey Results

By Lab Manager

Centrifuges separate particles and structures suspended in liquid by applying thousands of gravitational force equivalents to the sample through spinning. Laboratories use centrifuges to clarify suspensions, separate liquids, isolate suspended particles, perform density measurements and for many other applications. Many users, and some manufacturers, specify centrifuges and centrifugation in terms of rotor revolutions per minute (rpm), but as one expert notes, rpm is a vague term that says nothing about separation power. The operative term these days is RCF (relative centrifugal force), which is a function of rotor radius and the square of the rotational speed. Two centrifuges with the same RCF provide comparable resolving power. We recently surveyed readers about centrifuge use in their labs.

The fields of work our surveyed readers belong to include:

Biochemistry and biology 29%
Chemical 8%
Environment 7%
Pharmaceutical industry 7%
Food and related products 7%
Clinical and blood banking 21%
Microbiology 9%
Other 13%

The speed range (RPM) of the centrifuge(s) respondents are currently using in their labs:

0 - 7,500 RPM 91%
7,500 - 10,000 RPM 92%
10,000 - 15,000 RPM 94%
15,000 - 20,000 RPM 88%
20,000+ RPM 90%

The 10 factors that our respondents found most important in the daily use of their centrifuges:

  Important Not Important Don't Know
Reliability 99% 1% 0%
Ease of use 97% 2% 0%
Low maintenance / operating costs 96% 3% 1%
Price 94% 5% 1%
Safety Features 87% 11% 2%
Warranty 81% 16% 4%
Service and Support 80% 17% 4%
Accuracy 74% 20% 6%
Ease of installation 71% 27% 2%
Noise reduction 70% 27% 3%

Types of centrifuges respondents are currently using in their labs:

Floor UltraCentrifuge 89%
Floor Refrigerated Centrifuge 93%
Floor Centrifuge 93%
Microcentrifuge 93%
Benchtop Refrigerated Centrifuge 93%
Benchtop Clinical Centrifuge 94%
Benchtop UltraCentrifuge 88%
Benchtop Centrifuge 89%
Other 77%

Types of centrifuge rotors our surveyed readers are currently utilizing in their labs:

Swinging-bucket rotors 92%
Fixed angle rotors 91%
Vertical rotors 88%
Other 69%

Questions our readers felt were the most important to have answered before committing to buying a centrifuge:

What type of centrifuge is best to follow the evolution of the laboratory? 33%
Plastics and composites vs. metal rotors: which makes the most sense for my lab? 17%
What are the considerations for selecting a centrifuge that increases the speed (g-force) and capacity? 20%
How do I select the appropriate centrifuge tube for the centrifuge I am purchasing? 13%
Can I get the features and function of a floorstanding centrifuge in a benchtop? 11%
Other 5%

For more information on centrifuges, visit www.labmanager.com/centrifuges
Completed Surveys: 467

See the latest survey results

Categories: Surveys

Published In

Saving Energy, Saving Money Magazine Issue Cover
Saving Energy, Saving Money

Published: April 1, 2012

Cover Story

Saving Energy, Saving Money

In 2002, when Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) in Berkeley, California, decided to build the Molecular Foundry laboratory, they employed the help of Steve Greenberg, an in-house energy management engineer.