Icon Scientific's New Pour Point Analyser Goes Where No Peltier-Based Cooled Analyser Has Gone Before

Icon Scientific has announced the launch of its brand new Pour Point analyser, featuring its advanced thermoelectric Peltier-based cooling system.

Used to provide an indicator of the lowest temperature at which typically a fuel oil may be used, icon’s Pour Point is an industry first because of its ability to deliver exceptionally accurate and repeatable measurement results, without the need for a chiller to cool the water. No other manufacturer has been able to achieve this: negating the need for chilled water reduces running costs and conquers the logistical limitations which have long governed where and how pour point analysers can be used, opening geographical frontiers such as deserts and other remote locations.

Kevin Fogarty, Managing Director at Icon Scientific, said: “In addition to limiting the need for chilled water as a coolant, we have housed the Peltier cooler in a unique, patented, sealed containment vessel held under vacuum. This has eliminated the formation of condensation and ice - key contributors to deterioration of the cooling elements used in traditional technologies. The inclusion of a detection system to monitor the vacuum alerts the user to any sample leakage. The result is a far more reliable and cost effective method of analysis than any other offered on the market to date, since the demand for operational down time as the result of the constant replacement of failing diodes does not exist – conquering a second frontier.”

Designed to meet ASTM D97, D5853, D5949 and D5985 pour and no flow point analysis standards, icon’s Pour Point analyser is housed in a self-contained all explosion proof construction ATEX and IECEx certified unit, which requires no purge gas for operation.

So how does it work? The low mass measuring cell traps a small amount of the sample in a “ U” tube. This is then cooled at a controlled rate by the Cryocooler. At pre-set temperature intervals the sample is pulsed at one end of the “U” tube by a cylinder equipped with a piston driven by a stepper motor. Sample movement is then detected by a differential pressure sensor connected to the ends of the “U” tube. The cooling is continued until the applied differential pressure pulse has been attenuated sufficiently to indicate that the sample is no longer moving. This temperature is taken as the pour point. The old sample is then warmed and flushed away and the cycle is repeated.

This advanced cooling system enables Pour Point to offer variable cooling rates controlled via Icon’s industry leading 17” wipe clean, explosion proof glass graphical user interface (GUI) using user friendly software which is both easy to learn and configure. Extensive digital and analogue connectivity enables remote operation through easy system integration with options including standard Modbus RS485 wired output (fibre optic optional), LAN Ethernet connectivity, 4-20mA outputs and alarm contacts.

Pour Point joins icon’s recently released Viscometer and Distillation analysers to offer a complete portfolio of physical property analysers, which includes analysers designed for measuring Vapour Pressure, Cloud Point, Flash Point, Freeze Point and the Colour/Opacity of oil and gas products.

“Pour Point is a next-generation analyser and the future of analysis in this field,” adds Kevin Fogarty.