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Definition : Laboratory devices that apply centrifugal force to a specimen (e.g., suspended cells in a liquid), causing its separation according to component density. Centrifuge basic components are an electric motor, a shaft, and a rotor on which the centrifuge head turns. The two most common designs of rotors are fixed angle and horizontal or swinging bucket. Most centrifuges can operate with several interchangeable heads. Centrifugation of body fluids, commercial reagents, or mixtures of both with other additives is one of several sample preparation steps commonly required in the clinical laboratory before measuring analytes in a patient sample. The use of basket-style heads and draining-chamber inserts in some centrifuge models allows the continuous introduction of materials to be separated into the centrifuge until the basket is full (i.e., intermittent-flow mode); this mode is used to separate suspensions and emulsions.

UMDC code : 10778

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