A magnetic stirrer is a laboratory instrument that creates a rotating magnetic field using a small magnetic bar or stir bar immersed in the liquid being stirred. It is used to mix and stir small to medium volumes of liquids, such as chemical solutions, suspensions, and biological samples, in order to ensure homogeneous mixing, dissolution, or dispersion of substances.
Magnetic stirrers typically consist of a flat or cylindrical plate made of plastic or metal, on which the sample vessel is placed, and an electric motor that rotates a magnet under the plate. The magnet attracts the magnetic bar inside the vessel, which then spins and creates turbulence in the liquid, facilitating mixing.
Magnetic stirrers come in various sizes and shapes, from small desktop models for personal use to larger industrial models for large-scale applications. Some models also offer additional features such as temperature control, digital displays, and programmable settings for more precise and automated mixing.
Magnetic stirrers are commonly used in chemistry, biology, and medical labs for various applications, such as cell culture, chemical synthesis, enzymatic reactions, and microbiology experiments. They are popular due to their simplicity, low cost, and ease of use compared to other mixing methods such as shaking or vortexing.