Sieve Sizes

Published: | Updated: April 29, 2020;

Definition - What does Sieve Sizes mean?

Sieve sizes refers to a range of particulate diameter classifications based on the fraction of solid grains present in a material or metal sample. Sieve size analysis is used to carefully confirm the granular profile of protective material applied to a metal's surface to safeguard it against corrosion.

Corrosionpedia explains Sieve Sizes

Sieve sizes are particularly useful when generating a granular particulate distribution profile for a soil or metal sample. Sieves of various mesh sizes are used in stacks (largest mesh size to smallest) to divide samples into a range of size fractions.

Large mesh openings are typically 1 inch (25.4 mm) to 1/4 inches (6.35 mm) while small mesh openings are typically specified as 3 1/2 to 400 (corresponding to the number of openings per linear inch in the sieve plate).

This convention is used to evaluate particle size by mesh distribution:

  • A plus sign ("+") before the mesh represents the particles that are retained by the sieve
  • A minus sign ("-") before the mesh represents the particles that pass through the sieve
  • Typically 90% or more of the particles correspond to the indicated range
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