Frequently Asked Questions
Q. What are mono-dispersed particles?
A. In physical and organic chemistry, the dispersity is a measure of the heterogeneity of sizes of molecules or particles in a mixture. A collection of particles is called uniform or mono-dispersed if each of the particles in the collection has the same size, shape, or mass.
Micropore's patented membrane technology is able to reliably and efficiently mass-produce monodispersed particles at whatever size is required with minimal wastage.
Q. What is an emulsion?
A. An emulsion is a mixture of two or more liquids that are normally immiscible (unmixable or unblendable). The word "emulsion" comes from the Latin word for "to milk", as milk is an emulsion of fat and water, along with other components. Emulsions are part of a more general class of two-phase systems of matter called colloids. Although the terms colloid and emulsion are sometimes used interchangeably, emulsion should be used when both phases, dispersed and continuous, are liquids. In an emulsion, one liquid (the dispersed phase) is dispersed in the other (the continuous phase). Examples of emulsions include vinaigrettes, homogenized milk, mayonnaise, and some cutting fluids for metal working.
Two liquids can form different types of emulsions. As an example, oil and water can form, first, an oil-in-water emulsion, wherein the oil is the dispersed phase, and water is the continuous medium. (Lipoproteins, as implemented by all complex living organisms, are one example of this.) Second, they can form a water-in-oil emulsion, wherein water is the dispersed phase and oil is the external, continuous phase. Multiple emulsions are also possible, including a "water-in-oil-in-water" emulsion and an "oil-in-water-in-oil" emulsion.
Micropore's patented membrane technology is able to reliably and efficiently mass-produce substance emulsions with minimal wastage.
Q.What is 'microencapsulation'?
A. The 'Science and Art' of microencapsulation is a process in which tiny droplets are surrounded by a coating to give small capsules, with many useful properties. In general, it is used to incorporate food ingredients, enzymes, cells or other materials on a micrometric scale. Microencapsulation can also be used to enclose solids, liquids, or gases inside a wall made of a hard or soft soluble film, in order to reduce dosing frequency and prevent the degradation of pharmaceuticals. In a relatively simple form, a microcapsule is a small sphere with a uniform wall around it. The material inside the microcapsule is referred to as the core, internal phase, or fill, whereas the wall is sometimes called a shell, wall or coating.
Micropore's patented membrane technology is able to reliably and efficiently mass-produce micro-encapsulated particles with minimal waste.
Q. What is the difference between 'Crossflow' and 'Torsional' membrane systems?
A. The crossflow approach relies on the passage of the continuous phase, over the surface of a static membrane, to remove the extruded dispersed phase droplets. The torsional system uses a dynamic, moving cylindrical membrane, which oscillates at high frequency, as the dispersed phase is passed through the membrane. At end of each oscillation cycle, the rapid deceleration of the membrane provides enough shear force to displace the disperse phase droplets before resuming the oscillation cycle.
Micropore's patented membrane technology is able to reliably and efficiently mass-produce mono-dispersed particles at whatever size is required with minimised waste.
Q. Who are Micropore Technologies?
A. Micropore Technologies was established as a commercial high-technology spin-out of Loughborough University in the UK in 2003. Today the company is a solutions provider for specialist particles and emulsion manufacturing, working with a wide portfolio of exciting and demanding clients commercialising products and technology based on its novel emulsification and encapsulation processes. We operate globally with offices in Europe and the US.
Q. What is the relationship between Micropore and Loughbrough University?
A. Micropore's technologies were invented by Richard Holdich, the Professor of Chemical Engineering at Loughborough University (UK), who has published many papers in the field, and is author of a book on Particle Technology. The intellectual property (IP) now resides in Micropore Technologies, Ltd., with the University holding an equity position in the company.
Q.Can you hire Micropore membrane units?
A. Micropore's equipment can be purchased outright, leased or hired. We maintain close working relationships with our customers supporting them in the development of formulations and manufacturing set ups. Please get in touch to discuss your requirements.
Q. Can Micropore manufacture mono-dispersed particles to a specification for us?
A. Micropore is not a particle manufacturer as such, but we are able to produce sample quantities of particles in our laboratory to test formulations and demonstrate the efficiency of the Micropore technology. Please get in touch to discuss your requirements.
Q. Can Micropore membranes be used to filter mammalian cells?
A. For the filtration of mammalian cells our novel slotted microfilters provide a very low pressure drop over the filter and gentle filtration conditions that do not distrupt the cells to be filtered. Our novel operating techniques mean that the cells are very gently filtered, avoiding problems with cell disruption.
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