Latest News and Application Notes

Sulfur in the Fields: S832 and CNS928

August 26, 2022

Sulfur is an essential nutrient in crop production. It is vital for the production of chlorophyll and several amino acids that form protein, among other functions in plants. In recent years, the world has been paying more attention to sulfur emissions, trying to minimize SO2 in the air, which in turn minimizes the sulfur deposited naturally in the fields. When combined with the trend toward high-yield crop production in many areas of the world, knowing the actual level of sulfur in your fields has become even more important. Sulfur can also be measured in plant tissues, and then, of course, knowing the sulfur content of fertilizer is also necessary to correct any sulfur deficiencies or excess in your fields. All of these sulfur determinations can be handled with a single combustion instrument from LECO.

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Scorched Soils: Determining Moisture Content with the TGM800 and TGA801

August 5, 2022

Moisture levels in soil are important to know when growing plants. In addition to being a necessary component of photosynthesis, the moisture in soil acts as a carrier for a plant's essential nutrients, such as nitrogen and carbon. Knowing the moisture content of your soil enables you to properly balance the nutrient density and correct for moisture issues. Traditional manual drying methods have been lab-tried and -tested, but they can feel like relics of the past as today's lab is tasked to do more with less time.

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Escaping Helium: Helium Shortage 4.0

July 15, 2022

Many LECO analytical instrument rely on consumables like pure chemical and high purity gases to function. When supply chain issues affect these consumables, laboratory operations can quickly increase in cost or in worst case scenarios can even be shut down. One current issue that is plaguing the scientific community is the supply of helium.

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Sulfur and Superalloys: the 844 Series

July 1, 2022

The very first alloys used by humans were meteoric irons, alloys of iron and nickel that fell to the earth in meteors. As smelting technologies were developed, humans began creating alloys such as bronze and brass, metals that were more flexible in their properties, depending on the proportions of their constituents. It wasn't until the 19th century that most metals were discovered, opening the doors for many more alloys such as aluminum alloys. At first seen as a novelty, aluminum alloys proved their worth when they were used in the Wright brothers' first airplane engine. Ever since, alloys have been vital to engineering advancements, but it wasn't until the advent of superalloys that very-high-temperature engineering technologies have become possible.

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Kjeldahl vs Dumas: Modern Protein Analysis

June 3, 2022

Since the 1800s, there have been two major methods of protein determination, the Kjeldahl and the Dumas methods. Both methods measure the nitrogen in a sample and use mathematics to convert that into the protein content. Though the Dumas method was older, the Kjeldahl method quickly took off in popularity due to its relative ease of performance. However, as new technologies developed, the Dumas method began gaining in popularity.

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All About Aluminum: The New H836EN

May 20, 2022

Once more expensive than gold, aluminum has not lost its value over the years, only its price tag. Thanks to revolutionary methods of production largely developed in the late 1800s, the price of aluminum dropped from $34 an ounce in 1852 ($1,276 in 2022 dollars) to just $0.09 an ounce today. As a low-density, high-strength, corrosion-resistant metal, aluminum's usefulness has led to incredible consumption in many industries from transportation to packaging.

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Automating Better Water: The TGA and Water Treatment

May 13, 2022

Clean, safe water is a cornerstone of life itself, and the ability to properly process and treat wastewater is a key component in environmental preservation. As such, water treatment plants such as Veritas S. p. A (Veneziana Energia Risorse Idriche Territorio Ambiente e Servizi) are a critical part of water infrastructure, and the analytical methods they use are a critical part of water treatment.

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Juicing Juice: Determining Protein with the FP928

April 22, 2022

Year after year, the popularity of juice continues to rise. As consumers become more health- and environmentally-conscious, juice has risen to the forefront as a sustainable, vegan, and nutritious beverage option. It certainly doesn't hurt that with the pandemic, people have shifted to entertaining at home and making their own mixed drinks with juices as mixers. But how does juice actually hold up to nutritional demands?

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Thermogravimetric: Automated

April 1, 2022

Traditional thermogravimetric analyses such as loss-on-drying or loss-on-ignition techniques are long processes with many manual steps as samples are measured and transferred and re-measured to determine the loss. Every touch increases labor requirements and the chance for operator error. But there's a better way.

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Ferroalloy Factors: Oxygen and Nitrogen Determination

March 18, 2022

Most iron products these days are improved with the addition of ferroalloys, or iron alloys containing high levels of other primary elements. Ferroalloys are everywhere from cast iron to stainless steel. These extra elements help strengthen the metal by adding their own characteristics: silicon is used to deoxidize steel, manganese mitigates harmful effects of sulfur, and chromium increases corrosion resistance, to name just a few. But adding to iron is not without risk; if unwanted elements are part of the ferroalloy, they can weaken the resulting products.

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