The Analyst

Diffuser-incorporated transmission NIR measurement for reliable analysis of packed granular samples.

PMID 23803741


A diffuser-incorporated transmission near-infrared (NIR) scheme that enables direct spectral collection of packed granular samples with reliable sample representation and reproducibility has been demonstrated. The analytical utility of this method has been evaluated for the determination of polyethylene (PE) pellet density and the discrimination of the geographical origin of rice samples. Based on the preliminary observation of transmission spectral features acquired from spherical polyoxymethylene (POM) packings composed of different particle sizes as well as packing thickness, a portion of the radiation was propagated through the void space in the packing without fully interacting with the POM pellets. This type of radiation, so-called non-fully interacted radiation (NFIR), adversely affected the sample representation as well as the reproducibility of transmission measurements. To maximize the interaction of NIR radiation with granular samples, a polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) diffuser was positioned in front of the sample packing to introduce isotropically diffused radiation into the sample. This diffuser-incorporated scheme resulted in highly reproducible transmission spectra for both packed granular samples. Consequently, the density determination of PE pellets as well as discrimination of rice samples according to geographical origin was more accurate using the proposed scheme.