Inframatic 9500 Grain and Flour Analyzer

NTEP approved IM 9500The IM 9500 has been the NIR grain analyzer of choice for grain traders and flour millers since its launch a few years ago. To increase its usefulness for flour millers we have added flour analysis capabilities to it. 30 years ago Perten brought NIR flour analysis to the industry and we are very proud to introduce the IM 9500 as our next generation flour analyzer. It has been very well received by our flour milling customers, such as China’s largest milling group Wudeli Flour Milling.

Wudeli Flour Milling Selects the IM 9500

The Wudeli Flour Milling Group is the largest flour milling company in China with a total capacity of 28,000 metric tons wheat/day from 11 factories. The company is also currently in the process of building several new sites. Wudeli is relying on NIR technology in order to maintain product quality and reducing time and costs for wet chemistry analysis.

The Perten IM 9500 with the flour module was evaluated at one of the Wudeli mills. During the course of a couple of weeks several hundreds of samples were analyzed on the IM 9500. The samples were then subjected to reference testing for moisture, ash and wet gluten content at the mill laboratory, protein content was not tested since it’s not part of the Chinese flour standard test. Wudeli Flour Milling was very pleased with the performance of the IM 9500 and is in the process of rolling it out across their factories.

IM 9500 Sample Presentation

Sample handling and sample presentation is critical to the ease of use and accuracy of prediction of any NIR instrument. Packing sample cells has always been subject to user variation. We designed a system that eliminates inter-operator variation and our flour sample cuvette eliminates all possible light leaks which guarantees top performance.

Calibration and Validation

We know that an NIR instrument is only as good as the calibration. Perten Instruments has gone to great measures and expense to create robust and optimized calibrations for flour.

Flour samples from eight countries on three continents were collected including wheat flour from all major producing countries. These samples were analyzed in replicate on several IM 9500s using multiple operators and then sent to a qualified, respected analytical lab for reference analysis. Data was collected on samples at varying temperature to inoculate the calibration to temperature variation. The resulting data was combined to generate a robust calibration. The table below shows the performance achieved by Wudeli Flour Milling in their evaluation.

 

Moisture % Ash %db Wet Gluten %asis

Min

13.7

0.40

24.2

Max

15.3

0.84

43.3

Correlation

0.88

0.98

0.94

SEP

0.14

0.023

1.24

Repack SD

0.03

0.01

0.30

Samples

333

333

301

As further validation a comparison between multiple instruments was conducted to test the transferability and accuracy across instruments. Thirty three samples were analyzed on five different IM 9500 instruments using the standard wheat flour calibrations. The samples were analyzed in duplicates and by multiple operators to take into account any operator variation. The statistics and plot below compare ash prediction results of five instruments compared to the grand average of all five instruments.

The graph is a good illustration of how well the calibrations transfer. Instrument differences are generally less than comparisons of different reference labs.