The Discovery Laser Flash DLF 1600 is an advanced freestanding instrument for the measurement of thermal diffusivity and specific heat capacity of materials from room temperature to 1600°C. The distinctive design incorporates a proprietary laser, laser optics, detector, and furnace technologies, and along with the unique patented high purity alumina five-position sample carousel, ensures unprecedented measurement accuracy and sample throughput. With the ability to be operated in a variety of atmospheric conditions, including air, inert gas, or under vacuum, the DLF 1600 can characterize a wide variety of materials including polymers, ceramics, carbons, graphite, composites, glasses, metals, and alloys.
DLF 1600 Features
- Powerful laser provides 40% more energy than any competitive design, for the most accurate testing to the highest temperatures and widest range of samples, regardless of thickness and thermal conductivity
- Proprietary fiber optic wand delivers 99% homogeneous beam for the most uniform delivery of radiation to the sample
- Patented* five-position carousel for unmatched throughput and superior heat capacity measurements
- Flexible carousel design, configurable with a variety of sample holders, adapters and special fixtures for the widest range of testing
- Advanced alumina muffle tube furnace for uncompromised temperature performance from RT to 1600°C and measurements in air, inert gas, or vacuum
- High sensitivity IR detector for optimum signal-to-noise ratio, delivering highest accuracy over the entire temperature range
- Real-time pulse mapping for superior thermal diffusivity of thin and highly conductive materials
- Meets a variety of industry standard test methods including ASTM E1461, ASTM C714, ASTM E2585, ISO 13826, ISO 22007-Part4, ISO 18755, BS ENV 1159-2, DIN 30905
*US Patent #6.375.349.81
|Type||Class 1Nd: Glass, Floor-standing|
|Pulse Energy (Variable)||Up to 35 Joules|
|Pulse Width||300 µs to 400 µsec|
|Proprietary Transfer Optics||Fiber Optic Wand|
|Temperature Range||RT to 1600°C|
|Atmosphere||Air, inert, vacuum (50 mtorr)|
|Thermal Diffusivity Range||0.01 to 1000 mm2/s|
|Thermal Conductivity Range||0.1 to 2000 W/(m*K)|
|Data Acquisition||16 bit|
|Round||8, 10, 12.7, & 15.9 mm Diameter|
|Square||8 & 10 mm length|
|Maximum Thickness||10 mm|
- High Power Laser and Advanced Optics
- Flexible High Productivity Sample Carousel
- 1600 °C Furnace
- Precision IR Detector and Optics
High Power Laser and Advanced Optics
The DLF 1600 features the industry’s most powerful and robust laser light source and most efficient delivery system. The proprietary Class 1 Neodymium-Phosphate Glass laser and fiber optic power wand system, with built-in alignment, ensures effective generation and delivery of laser energy to the sample.
- Proprietary laser designed and manufactured by TA
- 40% more energy delivered to the sample surface than the closest competitive system
- 99% homogenized laser energy profile
- Noise-free design – The separation of the laser and furnace modules eliminates the effect of electromagnetic interference, and ensures long-term optical alignment stability.
Flexible High Productivity Sample Carousel
Only the DLF 1600 comes standard with a carousel enabling simultaneous testing of up to five samples in a single experiment to 1600°C. The carousel accepts samples up to 15.9 mm diameter and 10 mm thick, 20% larger and 50% thicker than any competitive high-temperature light flash instrument. Optional trays and adapters can accommodate a variety of sample dimensions and shapes, including round and square. Specialty sample holders are available for liquids, powders, pastes, laminates, and in-plane testing of thin films.
The clever design of the DLF 1600 furnace sets it apart from competitive light flash analysis instruments in every aspect of temperature performance. The furnace employs high quality molybdenum silicide (MoSi2) heaters, a high-purity alumina muffle tube, and multiple baffles along its length preventing thermal disturbances. The result is a furnace designed to provide the most stable and uniform heating for reliable control of the sample at 1600°C. When operating the DLF 1600, every sample in the carousel absolutely reaches and maintains the programmed temperature from ambient up to 1600°C throughout the testing time. Sample testing can be conducted in static or dynamic atmospheres, including vacuum, oxidizing, or inert gas purge. The result is the most reproducible thermal diffusivity measurements available from RT to 1600°C.
Precision IR Detector and Optics
The DLF 1600 includes a high sensitivity liquid nitrogen cooled Indium Antimonide (InSb) IR detector with an optimum signal-to-noise ratio over the entire temperature range. A built-in liquid nitrogen dewar delivers unattended 24-hour operation for extended experiments free from interruptions. Additionally, the optics in the detector path ensure uniform and accurate measurement of the sample thermogram. The IR detection area covers more than 90% of the sample surface, therefore representative data is collected without contributions from extraneous radiation, including edge effects such as “flash through” caused by imperfect sample preparation.
- Unmatched Accuracy and Repeatability
- The Most Accurate Diffusivity Measurements – Even Under the Most Extreme Conditions
Unmatched Accuracy and Repeatability
Accuracy, which defines how close a set of measured data are to the true value, is paramount in understanding how well an instrument performs under known conditions. The figure to the top right shows results of three consecutive experiments on a Molybdenum sample compared to the reference value. The data show the DLF 1600 accuracy is better than ±2%, well within the 2.3% specification, across the entire temperature range. It is important to note that, even at the maximum temperature of 1600°C, the results are outstanding with a deviation of only 1.26%.
The repeatability, or precision, of a measurement system is determined by the variation of multiple measurements on the same instrument under the same conditions. The bottom figure to the right shows measurement repeatability on five molybdenum samples tested from room temperarure to 1600°C at intervals of 100°C. The deviation from the average is less than ±1% with almost 80% of the results within ±0.5% of the average. These results are well within the specification of ±2%, across the entire temperature range demonstrating the unmatched repeatability of the DLF 1600.
The Most Accurate Diffusivity Measurements – Even Under the Most Extreme Conditions
The ability of any instrument to make an accurate measurement relies on all design elements working together efficiently as a system. On a light flash instrument, these components include the light source, the pulse delivery, the detector, and the furnace. A good way to understand the performance of a light flash system is to evaluate a sample under conditions that push measurement limits of all components simultaneously. Such an extreme case for light flash is a sample at the maximum thickness and the maximum temperature.
A 9.9 mm thick thermographite sample, 65% thicker than the maximum allowed on competitive instrumentation, was tested on the DLF 1600 from 100 to 1600°C at intervals of 100°C. The raw data thermogram is shown for the most difficult measurement at 1600°C in the top right figure. It can be seen here that the DLF 1600, with its combination of high energy proprietary laser and pulse delivery, high temperature furnace with uniform heat zone, sensitive IR detector, and 16-bit data processing yields high signal-to-noise ratios for excellent thermogram results under the most demanding conditions.
The graph to the lower right shows the results of the thermal diffusivity of the 9.9 mm thick thermographite sample compared to two thinner samples, 3.2 mm and 6.1 mm thick, superimposed with reference data. The results in the figure clearly show the superior design of the DLF 1600 to make accurate measurements over the widest range of conditions. All values reported fall well within ±2% of the reference. Even under the most extreme conditions, at maximum thickness, over 50% of the thermal diffusivity measurements show a deviation of less than 1%.
The Proven Software Platform for Easy, Accurate Flash Analysis Data
All Discovery Light Flash instruments include FlashLine™ software for Instrument Control and Data Analysis. The Microsoft Windows based software features an intuitive tablebased format for simple programming of experimental parameters in the instrument control interface. Real-time monitoring allows for immediate assessment of the data quality and instrument performance during each test. The Data Analysis module’s automated routines provide users with advanced analysis tools, including models for heat loss correction in both conduction and radiation. Integrated with the pulse-shape mapping measuring system, FlashLine determines the exact shape of the laser pulse versus time to make pulse shape and width correction. It also identifies the flash zero origin and enables finite pulse effect correction which is critical to guarantee accurate measurements for thin samples and high-diffusivity materials. Additionally, the TA Instrument developed “Goodness of Fit” evaluation tool allows the user to select the best results calculated by different Thermal Diffusivity models.
- Unlimited temperature segments with user-defined heat ramp steps
- User-selectable laser energy for each sample by temperature segment
- Data analysis of any already-completed segment during testing
- Determination of the specific heat by comparative method
- Option for automatic multiple-shots selection and averaging
- Correction for radiation component of transparent and translucent samples
- Automatic optimization of flash energy level
- Option for sample skip, and precision criterion
- Fast zoom function for X and Y segments
- Thermal diffusivity, specific heat, and thermal conductivity tables and graphs as a function of temperature
- Calculations of all models during testing and available by the completion of testing
Standard models include:
- Gembarovic for multi-dimensional heat loss correction and non-linear regression
- Goodness of Fit for the best model result selection
- Pulse gravity center to determine t0
- Pulse length and shape correction
- Two and three layers analysis
- Main models: Clark and Taylor, Cowan, Degiovanni, Koski, Least Squares, Logarithmic, Moment, Heckman, Azumi, and Parker