Zeta on sourceforge.net
About zeta potential
libzeta / Zeta Library
Zeta for Windows
Download & CVS
Zeta Command Line
Zeta for DOS
License (GNU GPL)
Getting started with Zeta for Windows
To download the newest release of Zeta for Windows, go to the Download section and choose the type of install that best suits your needs. If you are compiling the source files, remember that you need to get the source for both Zeta for Windows and Zeta Library. If you choose to download the binaries, there are two options: you can install the binaries of Zeta for Windows including the zeta.dll library, or only the binaries of Zeta for Windows, without the DLL. In the latter case, you need to get the zeta.dll file separately (go to the Downloads section in the Zeta Library section).
When you run Zeta for Windows for the first time, its settings are set to default values. You should modify some of the options before you can use the program. Note that the default values for all settings in the Device and Parameters dialog boxes are zeros, which will cause the calculation results to contain mainly zeros and overflow notifications if you try to run the calculation without configuring these settings first. It is this way so you don't forget to modify these important settings after you install Zeta.
The Device dialog box can be opened by choosing Calculations from the menu and then choosing Device. There are six fields in the dialog box, which you should fill in with numbers corresponding to your experiment's setup. The Aspect ratio is the aspect ratio of the electrophoretic cell in which the measurment is taking place. The other five values are used to determine the relative positions of the 3 points where measurments are taken (they are relevant only if parabola method is used). Since only positions relative to the size of the cell are used (that is ([Lower | Middle | Upper] level)/(Upper wall - Lower wall)), the choice of units is left to the user. You may consider using percentages as in the example file above, but you might as well wish to use positions measured in centimeters or any other units. Since Lower wall does not necessarily have to be 0, you can use positions measured relative to some point other the the bottom of the cell.
When you click the Options... button, a menu is displayed which allows you to save your settings to a file and to open an existing file. The files created this way can be used by all programs taking advantage of Zeta Library. See the File formats page for detailed descriptions of the file formats used by Zeta.
The Results format dialog box
This step is not necessary to run the calculation, but you probably want to perform it, since it allows you to customize the format of Zeta's calculation results.
You can open the Results format dialog box by choosing Calculations->Results format from the menu. The dialog box contains several edit boxes, where you can edit the header and the footer appended by Zeta to calculation results. You can click the Insert special character buttons to add additional information to the text. These special character combinations usually start with the % (percent) sign and when the header or footer is appended they are replaced by appropriate strings (for example %d is replaced with the current date and time). Such special combinations are also used in other edit boxes of this dialog box. Available special codes are listed near each edit field.
Other fields you can modify include: the Column separator field (this character will be used for separating columns in the output; it is usually a tab or a space), the Wrong format information field (the information printed when Zeta encounters a line in the input data it can not parse) and other strings used to signal errors encountered during calculation. You can also select an appropriate option with the Number format radio buttons to modify the number of significant digits printed in the results.
The Input data format dialog box
To open the dialog box, choose Input data format from the Calculations menu. First, you should check or uncheck the Data is in mobility units checkbox depending on whether your input data is measured mobilities, or apparent zeta potentials (you should uncheck the checkbox in the latter case). Remember to change this setting if later on you perform calculations with the other input data type than the one specified now.
By default, when performing calculations, Zeta for Windows automatically detects the format of each input line in your data (that is, depending on the number of columns it can find, it chooses to perform either stationary level or parabola method calculations). You might want to modify this behaviour for example if you enter your data into the editor by hand and are afraid of missing a column when typing. In auto-detect mode, a line with one less column will simply be recognized as another format of input data and calculations for this line will be performed. If you would rather like Zeta to generate a warning in such a situation, you can modify its behaviour in the Input data format dialog box. Choose Autodetect each line for the default behaviour or either Parabola or Stationary level for format checking. If you don't choose auto detect, you should also check or uncheck the First column is data label checkbox so that Zeta either expects first column to be the label or not (in which case the first column is the first column of measured data).
You're almost ready now
The last step needed to configure Zeta for use is to set up the parameters for the calculation you are going to perform. This, as well as an instruction on how to perform the calculation is described in the next paragraph.
Standard work with Zeta consists of two main steps: setting up the parameters and running the calculation (in this order).
You can open the Parameters dialog box by choosing Calculations->Parameters from the menu or clicking the icon with a yellow zeta letter. You can see what the dialog looks like in the screenshots section. The dialog box consists of seven edit fields where you should enter values appropriate for the setup of your measurment. The units used are as follows:
Running the calculation
To run the calculation, enter the input data in an editor window (of course, you can open an existing file with File->Open) and choose Perform calculations from the Calculations menu (or click the icon showing a computer). A new editor window will be opened, displaying the results. You can then save the results to a file or copy them to other applications using the clipboard.