A hot plate stirrer is an important piece of scientific used to keep a solution stirred or agitated constantly without requiring a lab technician to do it by hand. This comes in handy for a variety of procedures that count on reliably stirred solutions to combine, create a reaction, or separate. When choosing a hot plate stirrer for your lab or project, there are a few things to consider.
Choosing A Magnetic Or An Overhead Hot Plate Stirrer
There are two major types of hot plate stirrers: magnetic and overhead. A magnetic hot plate stirrer works by placing a long magnet in the bottom of the flask containing the solution being stirred. Then, the flask is placed on a special hot plate that has a magnet in the bottom. This magnet spins, causing the magnet inside of the solution to spin and stir the solution.
An overhead hot plate stirrer is composed of a tall standing unit with a stirring arm that you dip down into the flask. The end contains a stirring stick that spins. This type of hot plate stirrer allows you to create solids in the bottom of a flask without being disturbed, but it also requires diligent cleaning after each use to prevent contamination.
Different Types of Hot Plate Stirrers
When choosing a hot plate stirrer, you should make sure to get one that is well suited to your project. The size of a hot plate stirrer is a major consideration – they can range from 4×4 to 12×12 inches with temperature selection ranges from 41 to over 1000 degrees Fahrenheit. Some top plates for hot plate stirrers are ceramic and others are aluminum. Hot plate stirrers also differ in their stirring speeds and weight capacity. No matter what you need a hot plate stirrer for, you’re sure to find the perfect one with a simple online search that will bring up brands like Cimarec, Cole-Parmer and Corning to let you compare qualities and prices.