Buckingham, UK-based CEM have developed a system to measure the fat and water content of a substance, SmartTrac, using nuclear magnetic resonance (nmr) technology.

Combining nmr and CEM’s existing microwave experience, the company have produced a measuring system requiring no solvents or calibration.

The system offers users the ability to obtain chemically bound and free fat results in just a couple of minutes. Following a simple procedure, the operator dries the sample in the moisture analyser, then places the dried sample in a Teflon sleeve and inserts it into the nmr, where it is pulsed with energy. The resulting signal is recorded and analysed for the total proton activity of fat present in the sample.

Using proprietary software, the operator receives a print-out of the accurate total fat and moisture content, along with the identification code and name. Alternatively, the information can be downloaded to a computer.

Although measuring the fat content of leather is not mentioned, the company seem to think it may be possible. For further information telephone +44 1280 822873, fax +44 1280 822342 or e-mail info.uk@cem.com and ask for Chris Bool.