How it Works
Eliminating the Effects of Scattering
Integrating Sphere Technology
To eliminate the effects of scattering that cause problems for traditional instruments, samples are placed within the CloudSpec’s novel integrating-sphere cavity.
These unique chambers are made of a highly reflective material, in which the light is recycled many times before exiting the sphere. Only the absorption of the sample is then measured, meaning turbidity is eliminated from the signal.
Calibrated Path Length
Light propagation within an integrating sphere is a complicated process, meaning that the standard Beer-Lambert law of UV-Vis spectroscopy is not valid.
The CloudSpec’s proprietary calibration algorithm applies a correction matrix to the raw spectra to ensure all data is translated to a cuvette path length of 10mm – meaning the Beer-Lambert law is revived and results can be compared directly to existing UV-Vis data.
UV Vis and More
The true innovation of the CloudSpec is that not only can it measure turbid samples, it is also a regular UV-Vis.
The CloudSpec is built to perform two measurements at once: A standard UV-Vis transmission mode, that yields standard extinction spectra, and the scattering-free absorption mode via the integrating sphere. The combination of these two modes in one measurement make the CloudSpec the new standard for UV-Vis spectrometers.
Spectra at All Winemaking Steps
Measure, Track, Compare.
The CloudSpec generates full UV-Vis spectra on wine samples from 250-850 nanometers, whether the sample is juice, a ferment or a finished wine. This full spectrum of information can be used to determine key metrics on samples at any point in the winemaking process, such as:
- Total Phenolics Index (A280)
- Colour Density (A420+A520+A620)
- Hue (A420/A520)
Many other useful parameters can easily be determined such as CIE colour and flavanol concentrations. Tracking these parameters during vintage can help early determination of quality and support cap-management decisions.
Frequently Asked Questions
For wines, the CloudSpec can measure a wide variety of parameters that existing spectrophotometers will already measure.
Its unique advantage however is in measuring colour and phenolic content of ferments and juice. By taking a ferment and measuring it directly in the CloudSpec, full colour parameters (i.e. Colour Density, Hue, CIELAB etc) can be determined, while looking at 280nm measures the total phenolic index (TPI) gives an idea of the phenolic content. All with the skins present or pressed, depending on the needs.
Other assays, such as the Harbertson and Somers assays, which measure anthocyanin and tannin content, are currently being validated with the CloudSpec.
There a whole range of other sample types that can be measured with the CloudSpec beyond wine. Some examples include:
- Metallic Nanoparticles
- Fermenting beers and wort
- Cell cultures and biological samples
Contact us directly to learn more.
In traditional UV-Vis spectrometers, yes – samples need to be brilliantly clear and free from turbidity in order for measurements to be taken. The CloudSpec uses integrating-sphere technology to eliminate the effects of turbidity on the measurement, resulting in meaningful absorption spectra from even highly cloudy liquids.
While it might seem impossible, samples as cloudy as full milk can be measured in the CloudSpec, Because scattering is eliminated from the measurement, the cloudiness of the sample doesn’t matter. As long as the sample can be pipetted, and a suitable solvent can be used as a blank, you can obtain an absorption spectrum.
Potentially. While the cloudiness of the sample does not matter, like traditional UV-Vis there is an upper limit to the absorbance that can be measured. The upper limit of the CloudSpec, with a 10mm cuvette, is about 1A. Samples with absorbances above this (e.g. phenolics of red wine) need to be diluted by a suitable amount or a shorter path length cuvette (e.g. 1mm) be used.
The true value of the CloudSpec is that it has all the features of a traditional spectrophotometer, as well as being able to analyse cloudy samples. This means it will perform the functions of your existing spec on clear samples, while also enabling new analyses methods on samples like ferments and juice. So whether your lab is replacing its existing equipment or looking for a new instrument, the CloudSpec has features that no other instrument has.
Other than cuvettes, which are supplied with the instrument and can be replaced if broken, the CloudSpec requires no ongoing consumables to be operated. We built the CloudSpec with robustness and sustainability in mind, so there is minimal waste involved with using the instrument.
The custom cuvette-collars are provided with the CloudSpec to ensure accurate results every time. The instrument will only work with these collars, so we recommend using these. If however you would like to use your existing cuvettes, please contact us to discuss.
Not at all. Anyone familiar with operating UV-Vis instruments will quickly learn how to use the CloudSpec. Our software is built to be intuitive and clear, with varying levels of display complexity available to choose, depending on the application.