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Agrochemical Emulsion Tester AET100

The Agrochemical Emulsion Tester AET100 is designed to test the stability of water-based agrochemical emulsions which are widely used in pest control. Easily surpassing current techniques, the turbidity fluctuation analysis technique can quickly and precisely characterise emulsions to bring significant benefits to testing in the development of new formulations and the quality of manufactured emulsifiable concentrate products.

  • Rapid, objective measurements.
  • Extremely simple to operate.
  • Highly sensitive to droplet size change.
  • Convenient flow-through system.
  • Compact and lightweight.

Testing Emulsions

Good stable emulsions are characterised by very small droplets and by a fairly narrow distribution of droplet sizes, although the actual values will vary between different formulations. These properties should not change over periods of many hours or even longer.

The AET100 is designed to detect the size of droplets in oil-water emulsions using a simple procedure. A prepared emulsion sample is siphoned through a capillary sample tube mounted in a flow cell on the front of the instrument. After 1–2 minutes a reading related to the stability (R) is displayed: further tests can be conducted after flushing the sample tube clean.

Results achieved show good correlation with the traditional CIPAC test, but with significantly greater sensitivity and taking only a few minutes.

An optional validation unit is available to confirm the test performance of the instrument and for compliance with ISO9000 quality assurance procedures.

Operating Principle

The AET100 uses an optical system developed at University College London that responds to the changes in the size of droplets flowing through the measurement cell.

A laser light beam illuminates the flowing emulsion and the transmitted light is monitored by a sensitive detector, which produces a signal comprising two components:

  • An average (DC) value related to the turbidity of the emulsion.
  • A smaller, fluctuating (AC) component arising from random variations in the number and size of the droplets in the laser beam.

In unstable emulsions, droplets become larger in size and smaller in number, which leads to an increase in the AC component. A measure of the emulsion stability is derived from the ratio of the AC and DC components, which is displayed as a reading R. The higher this reading, the larger the droplets and the lower the emulsion stability. Conversely, a small R value indicates a stable emulsion.


The stability of emulsions must be tested to ensure their efficient use and proper application. A rapid assessment of the emulsion stability using the AET100 will help to prevent breakdown of emulsions and the formation of oils and creams.

In developing a formulation

A plot of results using different emulsifier ratios enables the optimum formulation to be selected.

Selecting the optimum formulation.

For routine quality monitoring

Frequent measurements quickly identify potential stability problems and corrective action can be taken during manufacture.


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