Magnetic Stirrer: Types and Function

Department of Chemistry - University of Reading

Laboratories are used to conduct biological and chemical processes by applying processes such as agitation and stirring. Technicians and researchers must use top-notch equipment to ensure consistent results. The agitation options such as overhead stirrers, magnetic stirrers, and hot plates are used to facilitate the process, which leads to accurate results.

What Are Magnetic Stirrers?

A magnetic stirrer is a piece of equipment that creates a rotating magnetic field. Due to the agitation and the fast speed of the equipment, the liquid samples are mixed thoroughly. They are used to blend two-component samples during biological or chemical experiments. They may even be used on liquids or solids to get a consistent mixture.

How Does It Function?

A stir bar magnet is positioned inside the container, then immersed in a fluid. A different magnet is placed under the container to attract the stir bar magnet. The magnet underneath the container is attached to a motor that helps spin it. You may configure the magnetic stirrer with a hot plate depending on the application to heat samples as they are being stirred. The hot plate allows you to mix different samples for various applications.

Types of Magnetic Stirrers

Heavy Duty Magnetic Stirrer

Heavy duty magnetic stirrers have high chemical resistance and mixing capacity. A built-in electronic management device helps to regulate the speed automatically depending on the load. This magnetic stirrer is the best choice for production and laboratory use.

Air-Operated Turbine Magnetic Stirrer

Air turbine magnetic stirrers utilize low-pressure air to enhance magnetic stirrer rotations. It minimizes the risk of sparking, which is expected from electrical sources. This magnetic stirrer is ideal in areas with hazardous solvent vapors and handles up to 1 liter of stirring solutions.

Battery-Powered Magnetic Stirrer

These magnetic stirrers are used in areas with no electricity and other sensitive areas. They are powered by batteries and have rubber feet to assist in stabilization. They are primarily used in incubators and are ideal for field use as they are portable and lightweight.

A magnetic stirrer minimizes contamination as only the stir bar is in contact with the fluid. Magnetic stirrers also provide reliable performance as they have a consistent stirring rate compared to manual stirrers.