Minner Consulting and Spectroscopy

Identifying the unknown and verifying the known


Pyrolysis-evolved gas FTIR analysis of polymers

A large tool manufacturer was faced with a product replacement issue. A minor component within a tool needed to be restocked in order to meet manufacturing deadlines. Due to the horrific Japan tsunami, replacement parts could not be obtained in a timely matter. Since polymer materials are composed of plasticizers, modifiers, and other additives that can mask or interfere with the identification of its components, the utility of pyrolysis-evolved gas FTIR was used in elucidating the composition of a complex polymeric material. The polymer was identified as a polyamide with a glass filler. From the analysis, a replacement gear could be manufactured by another gear supplier.

Using Spectroscopy to Troubleshoot Customer Complaints in Beverages

A customer of a beverage company calls to complain that they have found something in a beverage bottle.

Using Spectroscopy, MC&S identified the unknown material as a vitamin supplement. This is not an uncommon problem. While taking vitamins or medication the material can get back flushed into the beverage container.

As strange as this sounds we have had many of these types of samples.

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Using Infrared Analysis to Pinpoint Product Failures in Coatings

A manufacturer of a highly successful outdoor deck coating material contacted MC&S with a dilemma: They started getting complaints about their deck coating product after many years of providing a quality product.

The deck coating material was failing in the can and becoming non usable. After much investigating it was determined by Infrared analysis that the lining of the cans was the problem. Source of the cans had changed due to a fast talking sales person assuring the manufacturing company that the cans were comparable however, they were not.

Both types of cans were coated on the inside to prevent corrosion. The new less expensive can had a coating that was not compatible with the solvents in the deck coating product. The coating reacted with the deck coating material causing it to fail.

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Identification of Contaminants Using Spectroscopy

The ability of the infrared analysis technique to deal with small particles makes it a powerful tool for the study of environmental and industrial contaminants.

Contaminants on solid objects can be studied by removing them from their substrates and measuring transmission, or they can be studied on the substrate (in situ) by reflectance. Contaminant particles in air or liquids can be trapped on suitable filter media and studied by either method.

One of the advantages of the infrared analysis technique is the ability to record the spectra of unknown samples with little or no sample preparation thus providing a nondestructive procedure which preserves the sample for additional types of analysis if required.

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