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  • The BWB Team

How A Flame Photometer Works

Today we learn about how our instruments work.

In Flame Photometry, the Flame Photometer is used to simultaneously detect and display five ions (K, Na, Li, Ca, and Ba) and to accurately determine the concentration of each within a given substance. Flame Photometry works by measuring the intensity of light emitted (measured using a wavelength of a colour) when the element is exposed to a Flame.


Flame Photometer Components:

There are four basic components to a Flame Photometer – a flame, nebulizer and mixing chamber, colour filters, and a photo detector.

The Flame is a burner that is within the instrument needed for temperature control and to heat up the solution.

The Nebulizer breaks up the sample into atoms.

The mixing chamber mixes the relevant solution with the sample.

The colour filters show us which metals are present.

The photo detector tells us which metal the sample contains and to what concentration level.

Flame Photometry Process:

Flame Photometers work according to the following process.

The substance you are testing is first put through a nebulizer into the flame. When the solution evaporates, the sample becomes atoms. These atoms excite after they absorb heat from the flame. When these atoms return back to their normal state, they give off radiation in a specific wavelength. The light intensity of this wavelength is then measured and attributed to the relevant colour characteristic of the metal it represents e.g. Sodium (Na) is Yellow. This then tells us which metals are in the substance you are testing and to what concentration.

Data Storage:

After you have conducted your analysis, you may wish to upload this data to your PC to transfer to colleagues. With BWB Flame Photometers you can do this using a simple USB cable. You can also store the calibration data on the flame photometer directly to return to later.

How To Buy A Flame Photometer:

With BWB Flame Photometers, all accessories needed to operate the instrument are included as standard, all you need to do is add gas. We offer both a standardised Flame Photometer and industry-specific models designed specifically for certain applications. Take a look at our full range -


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