Thermo Electron Sets New Standards with Versatile Temperature Chamber for HAAKE MARS Rheometer

Karlsruhe/Germany (August 21, 2006) Thermo Electron Corporation, a leading global supplier of analytical testing instruments, has introduced a new temperature chamber with an extensive range of accessories for their HAAKE MARS modular rheometer platform. Equally well suited for polymer melts and solid samples, the CTC (Controlled Test Chamber) fulfils the most exacting technological requirements and is extremely easy to operate.

The CTC consists of two guide-rail mounted chamber halves which can be moved independently backwards or sideways as needed. A unique feature is its "park position" which allows ongoing temperature control of the chamber during sample changes and simplifies changing and cleaning of the measuring system between tests. The park position also permits use of other temperature control units without removing the CTC. If a Peltier temperature unit or other specialty cell is required for a specific test regime, place is made for it by simply moving the CTC to its park position. The design of the CTC combines the advantages of radiant heat transfer (rapid response to changes in temperature setpoint) with those of convective heat transfer (uniform temperature distribution). The chamber can be operated over a wide temperature range, from 30 °C to 600 °C, and is available with extended low-temperature capability down to -150 °C. A number of special measuring systems have been developed specifically for use with the CTC.

The CTC incorporates an innovative clamp system for solid sample testing in accordance with ISO 7621-1. Its upper and lower clamps are equipped with dual spring-action clamp faces which automatically center the sample along the measuring axis of the rheometer. The clamping action maintains constant clamping force, not constant separation (i.e. initial sample thickness), therefore automatically compensating for changes in sample thickness due to thermal expansion or contraction. The time savings provided by this feature are substantial as measurements can be conducted over a wide range of temperatures without requiring testing stoppages to retighten the clamps.

Thermo Electron's HAAKE MARS rheometer incorporates a new open-system design architecture permitting versatile and economical reconfiguration of plate/plate and cone/plate measuring systems for specific test requirements. Unlike conventional rheometers with single-piece measuring tooling, the HAAKE MARS rheometer can be equipped with two-piece measuring tooling consisting of a shaft mount - which is not changed - fitted with an exchangeable measuring fixture. A wide range of stainless steel and aluminium plate and cone fixtures are available from stock in various dimensions and cone angles. This modular design concept provides users unlimited flexibility in meeting present and future testing requirements with tailor-made materials, surface texturing and/or dimensions.

Responding to users' needs for optimum gap filling, an essential prerequisite for precise and reproducible rheometric measurements, Thermo Electron has now extended the range of accessories for their HAAKE MARS rheometer platform to include a filling aid for pellet or powder samples and a sample trimming tool.

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