Lab Equipment     Contact angle

Contact Angle
Goniometer and Tensiometer Products

ramé-hart precision contact angle goniometers and tensiometers are backed by nearly 50 years of experience and reputation. ramé-hart was the first comany in the world to manufacture a contact angle goniometer based on the NRL design of Dr. William Zisman. Today nearly five of decades of experience are bundled in each contact angle goniometer and tensiometer. ramé-hart only makes surface science tools for measuring contact angle and surface tension. That is our sole focus. Our machinists and instrument technicians hand build and assemble each unit to rigid specifications. No goniometer system will ship from our facility until it has been thoroughly tested and calibrated and every component is in proper working order. ramé-hart is the world-wide leader in surface science instruments and contact angle goniometers.

Please refer to the matrix below to better understand the differences between the various goniometer and goniometer / tensiometer (G/T) products.



ramé-hart Product Matrix

Measures Contact Angle
Measures Surface Energy (using suite of six SE tools)


Measures Surface Tension and Interfacial Tension Ϯ Ϯ Ϯ

Includes High Speed Digital CCD Camera, Series F2 or F4









Goniometer or Goniometer / Tensiometer G G G/T G/T G/T G G/T G/T
Edition of DROPimage: CA, STD (Standard) or ADV (Advanced) CA STD ADV ADV ADV STD ADV ADV
System includes PC & LCD
Supports 210fps G1 Series High Speed Upgrade Kit (p/n G1-KIT)      
Supports 120fps F3 Series High Speed Upgrade Kit (p/n F3-KIT)      
16" or 21" Optical Bench 16" 16" 16" 16" 16" 21" 21" 21"
Supports Manual Tilting Base

Supports Automated Tilting Base

  Ϯ Std   Std
Standard Precision 3-Axis Locking Leveling Leveling Stage      
Advanced Precision Graduated Heavy Duty 3-Axis Stage with fine and course vertical adjustment and Leveling          
Includes Manual Microsyringe Dispensing

Supports optional Automated Dispensing System


Supports optional Oscillator   Ϯ Ϯ
Supports Environmental Fixture
Supports Environmental Chamber          
Supports Advanced Chamber            

Supports all modular accessories

Maximum Wafer Support (diameter) 4" 4" 4" 4" 4" 12"♦ 12" 12"
Supports Vacuum Chuck 6" or 8"          
Includes 1-year Parts and Labor Warranty and Priority Software Support
Halogen Fiber Optic (HFO) or LED Backlighting









Available in 115V and 230V
Ϯ - requires software upgrade
♦ - Model 400 includes an 8" Wafer Support but supports up to 12".

Note that all current goniometer models ship with a microsyringe fixture (p/n 100-10) and microsyringe assembly (p/n 100-10-20) for manual dispensing. A wide variety of needles are available. See our chart here: download_login\lab_equipment\contact_angle\needles.pdf. The optional software-driven Automated Dispensing System is supported on Models 200 and up.

In surface science, an instrument called a contact angle goniometer is used to measure static contact angle, advancing and receding contact angle, and in some cases, surface energy. The root goni refers to "angle" while meter refers to measuring device. Thus a goniometer is a measuring device for angles. While the term has been used to describe a tool used by physical therapists and also for measuring other types of angles, the traditional and more prominent use of the word "goniometer" has been to describe a contact angle meter.

A goniometer / tensiometer is an instrument that can measure both contact angle as well as surface tension and interfacial tension. Models 250, 260, 500, and 590 are all goniometer / tensiometer instruments. All (5) of these models ship with DROPimage Advanced software. This powerful program calculates surface and interfacial tension using a standard PC. The method used is based on the Young-Laplace equation and the program has been designed to handle pendant, inverted pendant, sessile, and captive bubble drops. DROPimage Advanced is methods-based allowing full control over every aspect of the experiment allowing for sophisticated dynamic and time-dependant studies. Results include surface tension, interfacial tension, contact angle, surface energies of solids, drop dimensions, volume and surface area, as well as surface dilatational elasticity and viscosity. Full control over the Automated Dispensing System and the Automated Tilting Base accessories is integrated into the software allowing them to be controlled via discrete controls or via a methods-based experiment. The Automated Dispensing System and the Automated Tilting Base are included with Model 290 and 590 but are sold separately with all other models including Model 250, 260 and 500. DROPimage Advanced has all of the surface energy tools included with DROPimage Standard.

DROPimage Software

The ramé-hart DROPimage series software was written and developed by Dr. Finn Knut Hansen, a Scientist and Professor of Chemistry at the University of Oslo, and is available exclusively from ramé-hart instrument co. Our lineup currently includes three editions as detailed below.


ramé-hart DROPimage Matrix

Included with Model 190


Included with Models 200, 300, and 400

Included with Models 250, 290, 500, and 590    
Supports F Series Cameras
Supports High-Speed G Series Cameras    
Version available with support for legacy analog camera and frame grabber  
Includes Calibration Command
Automatically measures left and right contact angle and drop dimensions (height and width)
Images can be saved and opened
Results can be saved to a (text) log file
Includes suite of (7) surface energy tools  
Supports Automated Dispensing System (100-22)  
Profile data can be saved and opened  
Includes Phase Editor for adding and modifying liquids and solids  
Measures surface tension and interfacial tension    
Methods-based Experiment Wizard and design tool including Method Editor, Parameter Editor, Time File Editor, Event File Editor, Phase Editor, and Session Control    
Supports optional Automated Tilting Base (100-25-A)    
Supports optional Oscillator (100-28) for measuring surface dilatational elasticity and viscosity    
Supports Relaxation Experiments    
Includes an Advanced Reporting Tool    

Upgradeable to DROPimage Standard


Upgradeable to DROPimage Advanced

n/a n/a

Click on the icons below to learn more about each edition of DROPimage:

 DROPimage CA
  Calibration Tool and Contact Angle Tool - included with Model 190


 DROPimage Standard

Calibration Tool, Contact Angle Tool and Surface Energy Tools - included with Models 200, 300, and 400.


 DROPimage Advanced
  Static and Dynamic Contact Angle Measurements, Surface Energy, Surface Tension, Interfacial Tension, Methods-based experiment  using Pendant and Sessile Drops, and fully automated Advancing and Receding Studies (requires Automated Tilting Base). Support for Oscillator (100-28) and Automated Tilting Base (100-25-A). DROPimage Advanced is shipped with Models 250, 290, and 500.

DROPimage and Legacy Software

In 2002 ramé-hart retired the RHI imaging software and in 2004 support for that product was phased out. We strongly recommend that RHI users upgrade to DROPimage. Please contact us for upgrade pricing. Here are some advantages to DROPimage over RHI:

  • Real Live Display

  • More Accurate Contact Angle Measurements from Circular Curve Fit Option

  • Improved optimization routines

  • Better Results Output and Presentation

  • Spreadsheet-style Output and Log Files

  • Calculation of Standard Deviations of Surface Energy using the Monte Carlo Simulation

  • Additional Solid/Liquid/Liquid Tool and Single Liquid SE Tool

  • Easy to understand Graphical User Interface

  • Supports Automated Dispensing System (Standard and Advanced)

  • Supports Automated Tilting Base (Advanced only)

  • Supports Oscillator (Advanced only)

  • Frequent updates and patch fixes are available

  • DROPimage is constantly being improved with new features and support for new options









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