State of the art ultrapure water systems are now so clean that quantifying the particle concentrations is difficult. When measuring the cleanliness of the water the scarcity of particles can lead to statistical variations that can be as large or larger than the actual particle concentrations. A thorough understanding of the statistics of particle counting is needed to mitigate these variations and effectively measure the particulate contamination. This paper will discuss the size distribution of particles found in ultrapure water systems, explain the statistics of particle counting, and show how sensitivity and sample volume both affect the statistical performance of particle counters.
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