What Is An Ultrasonic Sonochemical?

What Is An Ultrasonic Sonochemical?

Date:Oct 21, 2020

What is an ultrasonic sonochemical?

Ultrasonic homogenizers, commonly referred to as “sonicators,” disrupt tissues and cells through cavitation and ultrasonic waves. Basically, an ultrasonic homogenizer has a tip which very rapidly vibrates, causing bubbles in the surrounding solution to rapidly form and collapse. This creates shear and shock waves which tear apart cells and particles.


Ultrasonics / sonicators are great for breaking apart cells and subcellular structures in suspension. They are not good for homogenizing intact tissue. Ultrasonic homogenizers can also shear DNA, which could be a good thing or a bad thing depending on your application. Other applications include creating emulsions, dispersing nanoparticles, and reducing the size of particles in suspension. Sonicators generate a significant amount of heat so they may not work well with temperature-sensitive samples. Acoustic enclosures are highly recommended; after all, you’re homogenizing using high-powered sound waves.


Ultrasonic Homogenizers are recommended for homogenization and lysis of laboratory samples that do not require traditional grinding or rotor-stator cutting techniques for processing. Small and large ultrasonic probes are used in a variety of sample volumes to be processed. A solid probe allows for less chance of sample loss and cross-contamination between samples.


Sonication is the act of applying sound energy to agitate particles in a sample, for various purposes. Ultrasonic frequencies (around 20 kHz) are usually used, leading to the process also being known as ultrasonication or ultra-sonication. In the laboratory, it is usually applied using an ultrasonic bath or an ultrasonic probe, colloquially known as a sonifier.


Sonication can be used for the production of nanoparticles, such as nanoemulsions, nanocrystals, liposomes and wax emulsions, as well as for wastewater purification, degassing, extraction of plant oil, extraction of anthocyanins and antioxidants, production of biofuels, crude oil desulphurization, cell disruption, polymer and epoxy processing, adhesive thinning, and many other processes. Sonication is also commonly used in nanotechnology for evenly dispersing nanoparticles in liquids.


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