The purpose of this study was to determine whether the Coulter counter was an effective means of determining particle size distributions of portland cement. Complete Coulter counter and Alpine sieve analyses were performed on National Bureau of Standards Samples 114-J and 114-K. The data received from the Coulter counter and the Alpine sieve were supplemented by Wagner turbidimeter and Blaine air permeability data on the two samples.
Specific surface area calculations made with Coulter counter and Alpine sieve data agreed remarkably well with similar Blaine data. Wagner data at no time correlated with either Alpine sieve or Blaine air permeability results. Perhaps the Wagner turbidimeter should have been investigated as to its reliability as a particle size distribution or surface area measurement device.
The Coulter counter was found to have primary value in validating Alpine sieve results. The Alpine sieve was found to be useful in getting data much faster and with a higher degree of reliability or repeatability than the Coulter counter, which is very time-consuming to operate, and appears to be the most efficient device used for particle size studies.