The first commercially available ice nuclei counter, with particle detection in the 0.5 – 15 µm range.
Special Features: Discrimination between Ice and Water Particles



  • Ice nuclei efficiency studies
  • Cloud physics research
  • Weather modification

Researchers at MIT are using the SPIN to study how different types of aerosols act as nuclei for the ice crystals. These crystals govern the formation of high-altitude clouds like the cirrus clouds shown at right. Click the button below for an MIT article on that research.



The SPIN is controlled by fully integrated software. This software offers the following features:

  • Real-time display of measured and calculated data
  • Real-time information about instrument status
  • Easy configuration of the SPIN's operating parameters
  • Intuitive user interface


How It Works

The SPIN’s chamber design follows the parallel-plate geometry developed by Stetzer and the engineering team at the ETH-Zurich. Details are given in Chou et al, "Ice nuclei properties within a Saharan dust event at the Jungfraujoch in the Swiss Alps" (Atmos. Chem. Phys. 11, 4725-4738, 2011; pdf link). The parallel-plate design provides easy and uniform cooling. A compact refrigeration system cools the plates directly, eliminating the need for external cooling baths and heat exchange fluids.

The SPIN consists of the following components:

  • The Ice Nuclei Chamber contains the refrigerated plates with an ice layer to grow the crystals.
  • The Flow Acquisition Box contains the pumps, data acquisition system, and mass flow controllers.
  • The Control Box contains electronics such as pump controls.
  • The Warm and Cold Refrigeration Assemblies contain the compressors that drive refrigerant into the plates.
  • The Detector Box consists of the laser, two standard light-scattering detectors and two polarized light detectors. The polarized light detectors allow discrimination of ice particles from other particles.



Parameter Specification
Measured Parameters Single-particle light scattering (both normal and polarized light)
Derived Parameters
  • Particle diameter
  • Particle phase
Size Range of activated particles 0.5 – 15 µm
Particle Residence Time in Chamber 10 -12 seconds
Chamber Design Parallel-plate geometry
  • Self-contained compact system
  • Cold plate temperature to -65°C, warm plate temperature to -40°C
Particle Residence Time in Chamber 10 -12 seconds
Computer Capabilities
  • Full computer control of all systems
  • Programmable ramp/soak temperature profiles
Dimensions Self-contained in a single rack, 59 cm wide x 73 cm deep x 167 cm high
Power Requirements 220 VAC, 50/60 Hz, 3000 W or 28 VDC, 3000 W

Specifications are subject to change without notice.


Included Items

  • Instrument
  • One-year warranty
  • On-site installation and training
  • Operator manual

How to Order

Contact DMT for pricing or more information.


Phone: +001 303 440 5576
Fax: +001 303 440 1965