How to Use an Analytical Mill

Tips on Using CAT Analytical Mills

As flow-through chambers increase the versatility of CAT Homogenizers, so too does the compact rugged AX 60 Analytical Mill.  With this attachment on the CAT X1000 or X1000D drive motor you can quickly reduce hard substances – i.e. up to 9 on the Mohs scale of hardness – to powders suitable for further analysis.  Size reduction is uniform. Unlike using some mechanical mills or a mortar and pestle for reduction any heat generated during the pulverizing process is quickly carried away by a clever built-in cooling system.

CAT Analytical Mill Components

The short, compact CAT Analytical Mill is attached to the X1000 drive motor assembly in exactly the same way as interchangeable scientific homogenizer generator shafts.  In this case the rotor is a stainless steel blade configured somewhat like a two-bladed propeller that can be fitted with carborundum inserts when processing materials of extreme hardness.  The shaft of the analytical mill blade snaps into the homogenizer driver motor much the same way a rotor shaft does.  The unit’s housing is affixed to the driver motor by the hand-tightened holding screw.

Also as with conventional homogenizer processing, the drive motor and analytical mill assembly should be firmly attached to an adjustable mounting system to hold the assembly in place during the pulverizing operation.

Sample processing is accomplished in the AX 60 analytical mill’s 180cc capacity chamber, a two-part stainless steel assembly.  Both the top and bottom halves of the circular chamber configuration are fitted with an inlet port and an outlet port for the circulation of a cooling medium such as liquid nitrogen.

When the bottom half of the assembly is loaded with the sample, the halves are put together and held with built-in clamps that ensure a dust-free enclosure.   Cooling medium tubes are attached to inlet and outlet ports and the analytical mill is ready to process the samples.

The CAT AX 60 Analytical Mill


If applicable, start the coolant flow and using the variable speed drive of the CAT X1000 Unidrive drive motor slowly start the analytical mill then rapidly bring it to speed (shown on the X1000D model’s digital speed display).

At the completion of the process, turn off the drive motor and stop the refrigerant flow. When the grinding chamber is opened the blade automatically detaches from the drive motor.   Contents are now ready for further analysis or processing.

At the end of the day or before processing different samples thoroughly clean your CAT AX 60 analytical mill attachment in order to avoid cross-contamination of product.  For cleaning suggestions we invite you to take a look at our post on Cleaning Tips for CAT Scientific Homogenizers.    If you have a question please send it to us or for additional information complete and fax in our Homogenizer Questionnaire.

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