Zetasizer FAQ

Can I reuse folded capillary cells?

  • This depends on the sample being measured. Yes, if the cell can be thoroughly cleaned it can be re-used.
  • The electrodes need to be checked. If the electrodes become tarnished or discoloured, the cell needs replacing or results will be affected.
I am seeing a zeta potential unexpectedly near zero. Why?
  • The electrodes on the folded capillary cell may not be making adequate contact with the instrument contacts.
  • Bend the cell electrodes out slightly to ensure a good contact.
  • Also check liquid continuity (no bubbles) over the electrodes internally.
What type of cuvette should I use for size measurements?
  • Size measurements can be performed in a wide range of cuvettes, including glass, quartz and plastic.
  • The drop-down cell selection menu in the Zetasizer Nano software will list the array of suitable cuvettes. If plastic disposable cuvettes are used, the quality is important. It is better to purchase through Particular Sciences, since we supply Malvern quality checked cuvettes.
How can I check the performance of my Zetasizer Nano?
  • To test the size measuring capability polystyrene latex size standards may be used e.g.  60nm and 200nm Duke latex. The specification is the PCS size quoted on the certificate, plus a tolerance of 2% outside these values. It is important that the PCS values are used, rather than the TEM determined sizes.
  • To test instrument sensitivity look at the scattering counts from pure Toluene
  • To test the zeta potential capability, preformulated zeta potential standards are available in boxes of 10 syringes.
All these standards are available from Particular Sciences.


How can I send results to you for troubleshooting purposes?
  • The files on zetasizers have the extension .dts, and contain numerous records. It is better to create a new file in the zetasizer software, and copy records of interest into it. This will keep the file to a manageable size for e-mailing, and avoid confusion during result review.