Quartz Crystal Microbalance (QCM) is a surface characterisation technique that measures the change in frequency of a thin quartz sensor/resonator . This is done by placing the quartz in between two electrode which is then excited to oscillate at its resonance frequency using an alternating voltage. The resonance frequency is dependent on the total oscillating mass of the sensor and sensor surface adhering layers, including coupled water. The frequency decreases when a thin film is attached to the sensor. QCM can be used in a wide range of applications such as characterisation of physicochemical properties of candidate drugs, such as stability and solubility.
Biolin Scientific uses the QCM-D technique, which measures & analyses the frequency and energy dissipation response of the freely oscillating sensor, thus generating results more accurately and faster.