Clean Kjeldahl analysis improves safety in the lab
Advances in technology are making Kjeldahl analysis safer and more efficient as users at the Viking Malt laboratory in Halmstad, Sweden have discovered.
A new Kjeltec 8000 series instrument installed earlier this year is minimising risk of chemical contact during the Kjeldahl analysis used for testing protein content of malt and wort. In particular, the handling of glass tubes full of hot chemicals is avoided. “Because the machine empties every tube automatically, you don’t have any risk carrying the tubes,” said laboratory operator and Kjeltec™ Super-user AnnaStina Enell. “Just moving tubes full of hot chemicals from one side of the room to the other – it says by itself that it is dangerous.”
Laboratory Manager Lisa Johansson spent a long time deciding whether to go for the manual or automatic titration model of the Kjeltec™ 8000 series instrument. “We discussed it a lot because the automated model is quite a lot more money,” she said. But safer Kjeldahl testing was an important goal. “It is the most dangerous analysis we have in the lab. I can feel as safe as I can for the operators,” she said.
The decision to go with the new Kjeltec appears to be paying off. In addition to improved safety, the new technology is leading to improved reliability of results and faster throughput of samples. The instrument is expected to pay for itself within two years.
Read the full story in In Focus no.2, 2009