Food & Beverage Quality Control
Ocean Optics offers a full menu of spectrometers and accessories for applications involving food and beverage processing, safety and packaging. Our miniature spectrometers are compact, portable and flexible, making them a good choice for a variety of UV-VIS and NIR sensing applications. In addition, we offer optical oxygen and pH sensors for process monitoring and both headspace analysis and shelf-life studies during food packaging and storage.
For customers who value reliability, ease of use, convenience and productivity, Ocean Optics spectrometers can be custom configured, are typically much less expensive than traditional benchtop instruments and are reproducible in large volumes for OEM customers.
Example Setup: UV-VIS Absorbance
Absorbance measurements are used to quantify the concentration of gases and solutions that absorb light in a media that transmits light. The signal in absorbance units is proportional to the molar absorptivity, pathlength and concentration of the sample (see Beer’s Law).
An excellent, general-purpose absorbance spectrometer for UV-VIS measurements of solutions is our USB4000-UV-VIS spectrometer, which is preconfigured for 200-850 nm wavelength coverage and has a 25 µm slit for optical resolution of ~1.5 nm (FWHM). The spectrometer also includes an order-sorting filter.
Several of our other spectrometers are well suited for absorbance measurements. For example, the Maya2000 Pro is a good option where UV response is important, the Torus spectrometer is recommended for optically dense solutions and the small-footprint STS is great for handheld, point-of-use and OEM applications.
With an extensive line of sampling accessories – and the flexibility to switch among them with great ease – you have many options for tackling your absorbance experiment. If you can isolate the sample in a container such as cuvette or test tube, your options extend to cuvette holders and similar devices. If you need to make the measurement in situ – in a process stream, for example — you’ll need a transmission dip probe that can be embedded into the sample stream.
In our example setup, we selected a 1-cm pathlength cuvette holder with quartz cuvette for the sample; a transmission dip probe is shown in the foreground. We added a balanced deuterium tungsten halogen light source (215-2500 nm) for illumination and a pair of 450 µm extreme solarization-resistant patch cords to transmit and receive light from the cuvette holder. OceanView Operating software completes the system.
If our setup had required continuous flow, as is the case in many process environments, we would have selected sampling accessories such as flow cells that can be coupled with pumps, tubing and fittings to stream sample fluids for absorbance and other measurements.
Absorbance Standards (optional)
To verify the accuracy of your absorbance measurements, use our NIST-traceable absorbance standards. Our calibration standards kits (the STAN-ABS-UV for ultraviolet and STAN-ABS-VIS for visible wavelength ranges) each contain a background reference for low, medium and high absorbance standards, which read within +/-5% of the absorbance data provided. The absorbance standards are ready to use; preparation time and potential dilution errors are eliminated. All standards are non-toxic, non-carcinogenic and have a one-year shelf life.
UV-VIS Absorbance System Components
|USB4000-UV-VIS||General-purpose spectrometer is preconfigured for 200-850 nm and has a 25 µm slit and order-sorting filter|
|DH2000-BAL||Balanced deuterium tungsten halogen light source provides illumination from 215-2000 nm|
|QP450-2-XSR||Two 450 µm extreme solarization-resistant optical fibers will transmit and receive light in this setup|
|CUV-UV||This sturdy cuvette holder accepts 1 cm pathlength cuvettes|
|CV-Q-10||A quartz cuvette is recommended for UV applications in particular|
|Absorbance Standards (optional)||NIST-traceable photometric absorbance standards for 200-450 nm (STAN-ABS-UV) and 400-900 nm (STAN-ABS-VIS) ranges|
|OceanView||Spectrometer operating software|
Raman analysis of gumballs shows a distinct Raman shift for the peak corresponding to sorbitol, a sugar substitute.
Spectroscopy is ideal for measuring color and other characteristics of food samples.
Raman analysis can be conducted through vials, packaging and sample containers.
Absorbance of fruit blend dilutions shows the effects of amino acids in the pH buffers.