Nanoparticle Tracking Analysis (NTA)

NTA technology was pioneered by NanoSight who are now part of Malvern Instruments.

NTA is a unique method of visualising and analysing particles in liquids, from 10-2000nm, that relates the visible diffusion and rate of Brownian motion to particle size.

The rate of movement is related to the viscosity of the liquid, the temperature and size of the particle and is not influenced by particle density or refractive index. The particles contained in the sample are visualised by virtue of the light they scatter when illuminated by laser light.

Typical analysis time is approximately 30 seconds – however longer analysis times improve accuracy and statistics. Adding a syringe pump enables better sampling as NTA has a special flow mode, so that particle tracking still works with samples constantly moving across the measurement area.

Nanosight_technology          How NTA worksNanosight syringe pump


The light scattered by the particles is captured using a scientific digital camera and the motion of each particle is tracked from frame to frame by the specially developed software. This rate of particle movement is related to a sphere equivalent hydrodynamic radius as calculated through the Stokes-Einstein equation. The technique calculates particle size on a particle-by particle basis overcoming inherent weaknesses in ensemble techniques. Also, since video clips form the basis of the analysis, accurate characterisation of real time events such as aggregation and dissolution is possible.

The NTA Software v 2.30 offers: (and version 3.0 will released 3rd June 2014)

  • Real-Time dynamic nano-particle visualization
  • Particle-by-particle analysis
  • Particle counting and sizing
  • Particle size distributions displayed as histograms
  • Data output to spreadsheet
  • Video clip capture
Product Technology
LM10 Syringe pumps web page
NS300 What can NTA do for me? webinar
NS500 NTA technology web page
2D measurement of 3D Brownian motion discussion
NTA version 3.0