A pycnometer is common science equipment found in laboratories. It is used to measure the density or rather volume of solids. It uses an inert gas such as helium or nitrogen. Hence, sometimes it is also known as helium pycnometer. A pycnometer can measure solids that are porous/non-porous, regularly shaped, granular, powdered, monolithic and even comminuted.
This laboratory equipment is based on Boyle’s Law which determines the volume-pressure relationship.
What are Applications of a Pycnometer?
A pycnometer is used for characterizing:
- Metal powders
- Heterogeneous catalysts
- Petroleum coke
- Pharmaceutical ingredients
- Other construction materials
It is also used to determine the density of viscous materials.