What is pH Adjustment?

The science of everyday things

Sentek is one of the UK’s leading manufacturers of probes, pH electrodes and sensors, specifically designed for use in a range of manufacturing and other procedures, including pH adjustment. Although these instruments are essentially scientific in nature, their use is fundamental to a variety of everyday processes.

pH in water, for example, is a measurement of how much alkaline or acid is present. In terms of suitable drinking water, the pH level can be critical. It may require neutralisation, which is also known as pH adjustment. The type of highly specialised probes manufactured by Sentek are an integral part of this process.

The importance of pH

Though the majority of people are relatively unaware of it, pH plays a crucial role in our everyday existence. Our blood, the food we eat, and the paint we use to decorate our homes are all affected by pH. The ‘p’ represents power or potential, while the ‘H’ represents the Hydrogen atom. The term pH is used to denote the level of Hydrogen ions (H+) in a given solution.

As we’ve seen above, in the case of clean drinking water a pH adjustment is simply a matter of adjusting the pH level to make the water drinkable. It is within this process and many others that Sentek’s precise pH probes are used. Other processes include the manufacture and testing of biofuel, where a Biofuel Probe would be used.

The pH value of every aqueous solution can be measured using pH probes and pH meters, a process that is critical before a pH adjustment can be made. These precise scientific devices are used in the testing of a wide range of everyday products. This includes food items such as bread, dairy products, meat and fish; items such as cement, cosmetics, paint and photographic materials; and in other areas related to blood products, education, and soil.

The use of pH probes and meters

Sentek’s pH probes are highly sensitive instruments used in the process of measuring pH levels. A pH probe is made up of a pH electrode within a transparent housing, often a temperature sensor for temperature compensation, and a preamplifier; a thin glass membrane which is permeable by H+ ions makes up the pH element.

A pH meter is an important instrument when used in conjunction with pH probes, and is the most accurate way of measuring the pH level of a given substance or solution. The process involves the preparation of the materials to be assessed, as well as methodical calibration and testing.

The electrical potential of the solutions inside and outside the thin glass membrane of the probe creates an electromotive force in relation to the difference in pH. This difference is precisely measured by the pH meter. pH adjustment chemicals are then used to make the necessary changes or ‘adjustment’.

Sentek has been manufacturing a range of electrochemical sensors for laboratory and industrial use since 1991. Over that time the company has acquired a wealth of knowledge and experience in the field. The team at Sentek is also happy to advise on the manufacture of custom probes for specific applications.