Ubbelohde viscometerDr. Leo Ubbelohde, the inventor of theUbbelohde viscometer.
Ubbelohde type viscometer
is ameasuring instrument which uses a capillary based method of measuring viscosity.
It is recommended for higher viscositycellulosic polymer solutions. The advantage of this instrument is thatthe values obtained are independent of the total volume. The devicewas invented by the German chemist Leo Ubbelohde (1877-1964).ASTM and other test methods are: ISO 3104, ISO 3105, ASTM D 445,ASTM D 446, IP 71, BS 188
The Ubbelohde viscometer is closely related to the Ostwaldviscometer. Both are u-shaped pieces of glassware with a reservoir onone side and a measuring bulb with a capillary on the other. A liquid isintroduced into the reservoir then sucked through the capillary andmeasuring bulb. The liquid is allowed to travel back through themeasuring bulb and the time it takes for the liquid to pass through twocalibrated marks is a measure for viscosity. The Ubbelohde device hasa third arm extending from the end of the capillary and open to theatmosphere. In this way the pressure head only depends on a fixedheight and no longer on the total volume of liquid.
Determination of viscosity
The determination of viscosity is based on Poiseuille's law:where t is the time it takes for a volume V to elute. The ratiodepends on R as the capillary radius, on the average applied pressure P,on its length L and on the dynamic viscosity η.The average pressure head is given by:with ρ the density of the liquid, g the Standard gravity and H theaverage head of the liquid. In this way the viscosity of a fluid can bedetermined.Usually the viscosity of a liquid is compared to a liquid with an analytefor example a polymer dissolved in it. The relative viscosity is givenby:where t
are the elution time and density of the pure liquid.When the solution is very dilutedthe so-called