The calcimeter by Eijkelkamp Soil & Water is suitable for the simultaneous determination of the carbonate content in 5 samples. Where possible the vulnerable glass was replaced by synthetic materials. Because hydrochloric acid is used a stable and ergonomic design was chosen. The calcimeter is delivered complete with reaction vessels and test tubes (without reagents). Per reaction approximately one hour is required. Carbonates that are hard to dissolve, such as sea shells, take more reaction time.
The quantity of sample needed is determined beforehand by treating a part of the sample with hydrochloric acid on a watch glass. The carbonate content is estimated on the basis of the extend and the period of bubbling. Based on this estimate the quatity of sample for the analysis is determined. With this calcimeter no balloon is used to keep the CO2 separate from the water (to prevent any gas from dissolving in the water). This results in much more accurate measuring results. As a consequence of the repeatability and the accuracy, a series of measurements should be executed in a room in which there are no differences in temperature exceeding 4°C. In addition the reagents used must meet the standards for analysis. It should also be considered that other gasses (for instance in polluted soils) may be released. The gas will then have to be purified first and the CO2 will have to be determined otherwise.