Emulsion Stability by Turbiscan

The TURBISCAN is a liquid dispersion optical characterisation instrument. It is useful to monitor emulsions and dispersions in the kinetic studies of emulsion stability and it can also be used in quality control of products.

Measurement principle
The sample to be analysed is contained in a cylindrical glass measurement cell (photo). The reading head TurbiHead is composed of a pulsed near infrared light source (l = 850 nm) and two synchronous detectors. The transmission detector receives the light which goes through the sample (0°), while the backscattering detector receives the light backscattered by the sample (135°).

TurbiHead scans the entire length of the sample (about 65 mm), acquiring transmission and backscattering data every 40 µm.

Thus we obtain transmission and backscattering profiles giving the transmitted and backscattered light flux (in %, relative to external standards) as a function of the sample height (in mm). These profiles constitute the macroscopic fingerprint of the sample at a given time.

We obtain an important transmission signal (and a very small one in backscattering) when dispersions are transparent to turbid. It is the contrary for opaque dispersions.

Tubiscan in Oil Recovery
Turbiscan at DTU-CERE has been used for measuring the stability of Oil-Water emulsions. This technique is fast and objective (at least 4 times quicker than the naked eye in diluted emulsions and more than 20 times for concentrated emulsions).


Nicolas von Solms
Associate Professor
DTU Chemical Engineering
+45 45 25 28 67