Comparison of a Laboratory and Commercial Block Digester for Plant Analysis1
- M. Prasad and
- T. M. Spiers2
The design of a block digester fabricated in the laboratory is presented. The digester was capable of attaining 380°C in about 1 hour. Variation of temperature in different parts of the block was about 2°C greater compared to the Technicon block digester (BD-40) at 328°C. Nitrogen, P, and K, and Ca, Mg, Fe, Zn, Mn, and Cu values from either block were in good agreement for all crops studied using H2SO4 + Se digestion, and HNO3 + HCIO4 digestion. Precision was good from both blocks using either digestion method although the Technicon block generally gave a slightly higher precision for HNO3 + HCIO4 digestion. In addition, when one sample was placed in six or eight different positions on the block for the H2SO4 digestion in order to maximize differences between replicates, a slightly higher C. V. was recorded with our digester. The construction cost of the latter which has a somewhat smaller capacity and no automation was only about 20% of the purchase price of the Technicon digester.Please view the pdf by using the Full Text (PDF) link under 'View' to the left.
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