Centrifuges 101:  Using a Hand-Held Tachometer

CLIA requires that clinics and labs calibrate their centrifuge for speed every 6 months - you can do it yourself!  CLIA also recommends 400 g-force for urines – you can find the perfect speed! 

The Laser Tachometer is affordable and simple to use.  Simply place a small piece of reflective tape onto the rotor, close the lid, and turn the centrifuge on.  Then aim the laser through the view window in the centrifuge lid directly at the spot where you placed the tape.  The rotor will be spinning fast, so you can’t see the tape, but the laser beam will reflect from the tape and the hand-held tachometer will then count the reflections coming back towards the unit.  It will instantly display the rpm of the rotor.  The memory button will help you to recall the last reading. 

March 10, 2015 by Lauren Henze

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