Joe Flow 18 – Normal force control: May the force be with you

A measuring gap control via normal force is of great advantage in the measurement of semisolids like gels as well as solid samples. A gap adjustment is also required for many curing reactions.

What is normal force?

The term normal force refers to a force perpendicular to a surface. In rheology, this force acts on a sample (sample surface between measuring plates or cross-section of a solid bar). In old measuring methods, the axial load is often denoted as a mass. To calculate the normal force, this formula is applied: Mass [kg] = NF [N] / 9.81 [m/s2]

Example: The compression of a sample with a normal force of 10 N approximately equals a mass of 1 kg.

What to preset: normal force or gap?

The measuring gap is controlled

  • either by normal force, based on a gap size measurement
  • or by gap size, based on a measurement of the normal force.

Presetting both parameters makes no sense.

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