3M grey trifecta


With the focus on research, development and production of highly specified membranes 3M established its laboratories as competence centres. These serve all relevant functions which include product characterisation and release, R&D, application technology, all relevant functions of R&D, production, quality control and marketing.

  • science lab tube

    The laboratories are critical to the success of our business: Not only by daily quality control of our products and raw materials and adjuvants, but also by continuing development of new efficient characterization methods for our products and the products of our customers.

    Analytical requirements for membrane development and production are complex and increasingly sophisticated. Therefore, 3M applies the most advanced analytical methods and operates and invests in modern equipment.

    Our highly qualified staff supports both internal departments and customers in all aspects of membrane evaluation knowledge and experience.

3M´s laboratory consists of three groups:

Biology & Clinical Tests

3M, as a manufacturer of membranes used in medical applications, conducts tests regarding the biomedical aspects of the products. This covers hygienic and microbiological tests, as well as performance tests of medical membranes and devices.

These performance tests are used for internal purposes, but can also serve as an additional support for our customers. Moreover, we support membrane development activities from the initial phases of polymer screening to the clinical evaluation and market introduction of the product.

  • hands wearing purple lab gloves pouring liquid into containers

    These are some of our biomedical tests:

    Regular analyses for monitoring and securing the hygienic standard:

    • Colony Monitoring of air, equipments, process media, membranes
    • Endotoxin Determination (raw materials, process fluids, membranes)

    Specific Analysis for dialysis membrane

    • Dialysis performance
    • Water Ultrafiltration Rate
    • Sieving Coefficient of selected proteins

    Haemocompatibility testing (in vitro / vivo)

    Clinical performance


Due to the critical role of chemical composition in the performance of membranes, controlling and analyzing substances for the production process is an indispensable procedure.

Chemical analysis enables quality control of all raw materials used in the membrane production process. Consequently polymers and solvents as well as additives and all adjuvants are closely checked. In addition, the regular analysis of our products, for example the control of residual solvent contents in finished goods, is part of the laboratories’ tasks.

  • scientist filling up a vile

    Some of the chemical tests conducted are:

    Analysis methods:

    • Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC)
    • Gas Chromatography with Mass Spectroscopy (GC-MS)
    • High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC)
    • Inductively Coupled Plasma Atomic Emission Spectrometer (ICP) and Atomic Absorption Spectrometer (AAS)
    • MoistureAnalysis System according to Karl-Fischer
    • Total organic carbon (TOC)
    • Viscosity Measurement

    Water analysis:

    • Biological Oxygen Demand (BOD)
    • Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD)
    • Silt Density Index (SDI)


A wide range of tests are performed in relation to membrane quality. These tests focus upon characteristics such as membrane structure, performance and mechanical properties.

Our tests cover the entire product range from capillary to flat sheet and from medical to industrial membranes.

  • Some of the physical test methods are:

    Membrane Performance Analysis

    • Bubble Point Test
    • Diffusion Flux
    • Pore Morphology Analysis by Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) as well as the SEM-EDAX analysis of chemical composition
    • Pore Size Distribution by Porometry
    • Sieving Coefficient (cut-off) and Clearance
    • Transmembrane Flux
    • Ultrafiltration Rate
    • Rejection Test
    • Mechanical Properties Tests
    • Interface Properties Analysis
    • Captive Bubble
    • Contact Angle