Ultrasonic Viscosity meter


Thread Starter

Ram Ericastilla

Does anybody know what company sells this kind of equipment? It has to work with the ultrasonic principle. Some others sell the type of vibrating fork or coriollis, but I don't want this.
Try an internet search for Big Dipper. This is an ultrasonic viscometer manufactured in China.
You can also search for Argoyne. They also have been working on an ultrasonic flow through viscometer, the Big Dipper is an insertion or point type device.

I would be interested to discover your reasons for not wishing to use a fork type. At this time the digital fork viscometer is probably the most advanced and accurate, but I am probably biased.

You do not indicate the type of meausrement you wish to make.

If it is behavioural (viscosity at the fluid temperature) your choices are very open aas this is the easiest of the viscosity measurements to make and even a 1% or 2% FSD accuracy is acceptabel and in many applications dynamci viscosity is sufficient as the density variation isn't significant enough to make a a diference to whether you are measureing dynamic or kinematic viscosity as the viscosity measurement erros will dominate. At one time 1% FSD was considered a good accuracy for a viscometer.

If, however, you want to make an analytical measurement (viscosity at a reference temperature) your choices are very much restricted. You will need more than just a good sensor, you will need an accurate method to convert the process temperature viscosity to the reference temperature viscosity. Good system design is also critical.

There are, of course, some niche application specific solutions such as MFI devices for plastics production, but if your conditions vary then so too will the error as some of the assumptions made by the niche application solutions begin to fail.

Digital vibrating element viscometers are available as pendulum types (2%) and fork types (1%). The fork type also measures the density and accuracies of 1% of reading for viscosity at the reference temperature, or better, is possible.
Actually the Big Dipper appears to be made in the USA by Cambridge Applied Systems in Massachussetts.


Walt Boyes
Control magazine
Putman Media
555 West Pierce Road, Suite 301
Itasca, IL 60143-2649
Ph. 630-467-1300 ext. 368
Fx. 253-981-0285
[email protected]
I guess these guys should trade mark the name properly!

The Big Dipper Ultrasonic viscometer can be found at http://www.fullsense.com which is in China. The wen site isn't fully informative.

"Big Dipper" is, as Walt suggests, also the name of a viscometer produced by Cambridge Scientific but this is not an ultrasonic instrument. It is a variant of their magnetically oscilated shuttles device.

Viscometer manufacturers are not renowoned for novelty when creating brand names. Try this selection:
ViscoChief, ViscoTherm, ViscoFuel, ViscoMaster(TM), Viscotrol, Viscoseres, ViscoLiner etc. The list of compound names beginning with "Visco" is extensive. Many emplu a second capital letter... go figure. (actually, i have to confess that ViscoMaster(TM) is one I created and trademarked but it wasn't original (I thought it was at the time) as it had been used before and lapsed.

Anyway, in the context of the question, "Big Dipper" is the name for an ultrasonic viscometer. However, one might also look at Fuji but there is a caution with all these "ultrasonic" viscometers, some manufacturers use the term ultrasonic when they only mean that they vibrate the element at ultrasonic frequencies but do not employ ultrasonic techniques.

The Argoyne material has disappeared from the web but investigation shows that the technology was apparently sound but never commercially produced. This is a design for a flow through device which does employ ultrasound properties. The others are point sensors. For viscosity i would favour a point sensor but couldn't say if the Fuji or Fullsense devices are true ultrasound devices.
Some are simply vibrating element systems that depend on the shear effects generate between the vibrating element and the fluid.
Hi there Jon,

Sorry for the 14 years of delay in replying. .lol

Are you aware of any new advancements in the ultrasound technology for viscosity monitoring? I am interested in measuring without contact.