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A common piece of lab equipment in chemistry and molecular biology is the centrifuge. The centrifuge has a roughly circular shape and is surrounded by circular holes for sample tubes. By placing balancing tubes opposite one another in the centrifuge rotor and placing sample-filled microtubes there, you may balance the centrifuge.
Although balancing your centrifuge tubes is not difficult, there are recommended practises you should adhere to ensure accuracy. In a previous post, we covered other areas of centrifuge safety, such as examining tubes before use and verifying the maximum load tolerance, but in this one, we’ll concentrate on the following advice for correctly balancing samples:
Think about sample size and placement
Based on size and density, centrifugation generates centrifugal force to successfully separate and sediment the sample component. Rotor balancing is essential during spin, especially when rotors are partially loaded with tubes and plates because rotors spin very quickly and generate considerable force. The rotor can be damaged by any imbalance in the rotor, including when the centrifuge is set up on an uneven or sloped work surface. An unbalanced centrifuge can cause a chain reaction of disasters, including instrument failure, sample breakage, user injury, and general large-scale destruction in the lab. It is also a significant safety risk in the laboratory setting.
As the centrifugal force produced during centrifugation is directly related to sample mass and acceleration, precise balance at high speed becomes more essential. Even a small change in sample mass at greater RCF can cause a significant force imbalance, which in turn could be disastrous.
Keep the rotors aligned
Your centrifuge’s rotor can start to detach from the shaft over time. Follow the installation instructions in your user manual when installing your centrifuge rotor for the first time, and carefully inspect for any imbalances. Regularly check your rotor for misalignment concerns and repair as necessary.
Observe usage and upkeep instructions
Centrifuges are intricate pieces of machinery that need particular attention and upkeep to function properly. When you get a new centrifuge, be sure to carefully read the user manual and make use of the pertinent information to make sure everyone in your lab knows how to use the centrifuge correctly.