Best ph and conductivity meter are key parameters for measuring the acidity and alkalinity of a substance when monitoring the levels of nutrients, salt or contaminants present. Best ph and conductivity meter are used in a variety of applications including boiler maintenance and agriculture, as well as aquariums and aquaculture.
The pH and conductivity meter is a fast, reliable and inexpensive way to measure the pH and ion content of a liquid. So how do such counters work?
It is often useful to characterize an environment such as a body of water by measuring pH and electrical conductivity (EC). The pH is a measure of the acidity of the water or soil based on its hydrogen ion concentration and is mathematically defined as the negative logarithm of the hydrogen ion concentration, or
pH = -log _0_, where the brackets around the H + symbolize “concentration”.
The logarithmic pH value of a material is between 1 and 14, with pH 1 to 6 acidic, pH 7 neutral and pH 8 to 14 basic. A lower pH corresponds to a higher _0_, while a higher pH corresponds to a lower _0_.
Electrical conductivity (EC) is a measurement of the dissolved material in an aqueous solution that relates to the material’s ability to conduct electrical current through it. EC is measured in units called Seimens per unit area (e.g., mS / cm or miliSeimens per centimeter), and the higher the material dissolved in a water or soil sample, the higher the EC in that material .
Is there a connection between pH value and electrical conductivity?
PH is a measure of the acidity of water or soil and is specifically based on its hydrogen ion concentration. More hydrogen ions make a substance more alkaline, while increased amounts of negatively charged ions make it more acidic.
Because ions carry either positive or negative charges, electrical conductivity occurs. The more acidic or basic a substance, the higher the electrical conductivity. On the other hand, the lower the ion concentration in a solution or a soil, the lower the electrical conductivity (EC). Basically, both strongly acidic and strongly alkaline substances conduct electricity better. The material closer to neutral pH may be less conductive.
In summary, pH is the measure of a particular ion (i.e., hydrogen), while electrical conductivity is a non-specific measure of the concentration of ions in a sample.
What are some uses for a pH and conductivity meter?
Electrical pH and conductivity are important in many applications and industries. Here are just a few examples of the many applications.
Aquariums and Aquaculture – An easy way to check the salinity of any water is with a pH and conductivity meter. Additionally, you can manually convert total dissolved solids (TDS) or salinity or simply use a pH and conductivity meter with this built-in conversion function. An example of a pH and conductivity meter with this function can be seen here.
Conductivity measurement of salinity is important to measure as it can affect the osmoregulation of salt and freshwater fish. The optimal pH is different for fish species, the ideal range is generally between 6.5 and 9 pH. Outside this range, you will see slow or suboptimal growth, no reproduction, and extreme cases (pH 4 and below, pH 11 and above) death.
Boiler Maintenance – Boilers have a large amount of feed water in the system. This water contains contaminants that can cause problems over time. This happens during normal use of the boiler, as the water is heated and converted into steam, impurities remain. They will build up over time and affect the efficiency of the boiler system. Having a pH and conductivity meter will allow you to easily monitor contaminants in the water to indicate when boiler blowdown should occur. Monitoring the pH is also important as acidic water is highly corrosive and alkaline water can cause some scale build-up in the system.
Agriculture – electrical conductivity can be used to infer the amount of salinity, dissolved nutrients and solids dissolved in the soil. This is a good way to find out if more water or fertilizer is needed. Soil pH affects the absorption of essential nutrients, so when the pH is outside the ideal range, there is a chance that your plants and crops will not have an optimal absorption of nutrients and therefore will not reach their full growth potential. See our article ‘Best portable ph meter for food and dairy products‘ for more information on how pH can affect food and dairy products.
Best portable ph meter for food and dairy products
Get rid of the pH calibration headache this two-point calibration process. Remember to calibrate the instrument’s pH probe before first use. The pH probe is equipped with a 30 day calibration indicator which can be easily viewed on the meter screen. There is no need to calibrate conductivity or temperature.When taking a measurement, simply place the probe in the solution and the selected reading will be displayed on the screen. Since the Bluelab Combo Meter is portable and does not require a power supply to operate, you can get fast and accurate readings anytime, anywhere.
All Bluelab products are proudly designed and manufactured in New Zealand. The design focuses on ergonomic qualities to help with regular use in different growing environments.
Our rigorous manufacturing process means that every meter is inspected by hand before it gets to you!
Measure pH, temperature and (tds) EC, ppm 500, ppm 700 and CF with laboratory-grade glass that can be used for swimming pool, drinking water, hydroponics, brewing and cultivation
EASY two-point calibration and automatic temperature compensation make this digital meter a practical instrument with backlit LCD display and calibration reminder
Quickly monitor your nutrient level to maximize your growth and make sure your plants are getting the balanced feed they need. Unlike standard glass bulbs, the dual-junction probe reduces build-up on the probe for consistent readings and to increase life.
How are pH and electrical conductivity measured?
A meter and probe or litmus paper can be used to measure the pH of a sample. The most accurate, but the most expensive, of these methods is the meter and the probe. The pH meters are calibrated using special solutions or buffers with a known pH value. Calibration protocols can be found in the manufacturer’s instructions, but a simplified protocol can also be found.
Using a litmus test or a pH test is a simpler and cheaper way to measure pH. This method uses special paper strips that change color depending on the pH of the sample solution. The strips are available in a variety of resolutions, from simple acid versus base comparison to narrow pH value resolution. These paper strips can measure a 0.2-0.3 pH difference in the sample. Litmus paper changes color depending on whether the sample solution is acidic or alkaline, turning red or blue respectively. The pH bars indicate the pH of the sample also by changing the color; these colors are indicated on the packaging and vary for different pH ranges and manufacturers.
Electrical conductivity can be measured using a meter and a probe as well. The probe consists of two metal electrodes spaced 1 cm apart (therefore, the unit of measurement is microSeimens or milliSeimens per centimeter). A constant voltage is applied through the electrodes, resulting in an electrical current flowing through the aqueous sample. Since the current flowing through the water is proportional to the concentration of ions dissolved in the water, the electrical conductivity can be measured. The higher the concentration of dissolved salt / ion, the more conductive the sample is and, therefore, the higher the conductivity reading.
Analysis of the results
Measurements of pH and EC can vary considerably and are influenced by several environmental factors, including climate, local fauna and flora (plants and animals), bedrock and surface geology, and human influence on land. Common pH and EC values for specific environments can be found in literature such as peer-reviewed journal articles or textbooks. In general, pH readings ranging from 1 to 6 are considered acidic, 7 are neutral, and 8–14 are basic. Relatively dilute waters, such as distilled water or glacial water, have low electrical conductivity, ranging from zero to the micro Seimen range, while moderate streams and lakes, especially those with a high proportion of groundwater, generally have higher electrical conductivity.
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