If you have an ACS member number, please enter it here so we can link this account to your membership. (optional)

ACS values your privacy. By submitting your information, you are gaining access to C&EN and subscribing to our weekly newsletter. We use the information you provide to make your reading experience better, and we will never sell your data to third party members.


Analytical Chemistry

Inside Instrumentation

Technology and Business news for the laboratory world

by Celia H. Arnaud and Ann M. Thayer
November 23, 2009 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 87, Issue 47

Credit: CEM
Credit: CEM

(1) CEM Debuts Two Moisture Analyzers

CEM has introduced two microwave-based moisture and solids analyzers. The SMART Turbo analyzer can measure 0.1–99.9% of the moisture in solids, liquids, slurries, and powders, including difficult or temperature-sensitive samples. The company says its new unit is 40% faster than a predecessor model but maintains precise temperature control through a feedback system that monitors weight loss and sample temperature and adjusts the power to avoid overheating. An upgraded system, the SMART Trac II (shown), includes an NMR for rapid fat and moisture analysis. Smaller and faster than its predecessor, the SMART Trac II uses 95% less energy than conventional systems.

Agilent Forms Research Collaborations

Agilent Technologies announced two new research partnerships. The company will undertake research with Stanford University to explore a new class of nanoscale devices that combines scanning probe microscopy and atomic-layer deposition to extend scanning probe capabilities to prototyping and device fabrication. Separately, Agilent will collaborate with the Institute for Systems Biology, in Seattle, to create the Human Multiple Reaction Monitoring Atlas, in which they will compile triple-quadrupole and quadrupole/time-of-flight mass spectrometry data as a resource for quantitative analysis of human proteins.

Varian Launches Triple-Quad Mass Spec

Varian has introduced the 325-MS triple-quadrupole liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry system. The system features a vortex electrospray ionization source that improves sensitivity by increasing the efficiency of the desolvation process. In addition, the system’s Gold-Guard ion optics resist contamination and require little or no cleaning. The system is aimed at high-throughput labs performing environmental, food safety, and toxicological analyses.

Credit: Markes
Credit: Markes

(2) Markes Launches Extractor System

U.K.-based instrument maker Markes is offering a version of its Microchamber/Thermal Extractor (µ-CTE) that has a larger capacity and operates at higher temperatures. Four samples—each up to 100 mL—can be evaluated simultaneously at temperatures up to 250 ºC. When combined with chromatographic analysis, the µ-CTE is designed for use in-house by manufacturers that want to measure the emissions of volatile and semivolatile organic compounds, such as formaldehyde and phthalate plasticizers, from materials for quality control and regulatory compliance. Thermo Fisher Scientific has agreed to become a distributor for Markes thermal desorption instruments that are used in conjunction with Thermo gas chromatographs and GC/mass spectrometers.

Credit: Thermo Fisher Scientific
Credit: Thermo Fisher Scientific

(3) Thermo Fisher Unveils UV-Vis Spectrometer

Thermo Fisher Scientific has launched the Evolution 60S UV-visible spectrophotometer. The instrument acquires spectral data at a rate faster than 4,200 nm per minute. The system’s xenon lamp, which is on only when taking measurements, requires no warm-up time and operates over the wavelength range of 190 to 1,100 nm. The system includes several preprogrammed biological assays for protein and nucleic acid analysis.

New Microrheology System Available

Formulaction has launched the Rheolaser, an instrument designed to passively analyze the microrheology, or flow and deformation at the micrometer scale, of viscoelastic materials. Instead of macroscopically deforming a sample and measuring a response, the French company’s system uses multispeckle diffusing wave spectroscopy to optically measure the nanometer-scale motion of sample constituents due to thermal energy, from which it deduces rheological properties. The technique is applicable to soft materials such as colloids, polymers, gels, and emulsions.

Biocartis Gets Initial Funding

Biocartis, a Swiss start-up firm developing fast and low-cost integrated molecular and immunodiagnostic technologies, has closed its initial round of venture capital funding. Five European firms invested a total of about $15 million that Biocartis will use to commercialize its diagnostic system. It also will develop prototype assays for detecting, quantifying, and amplifying bioanaltyes.

Celia H. Arnaud and Ann M. Thayer write Inside Instrumentation. Contact them via e-mail to


This article has been sent to the following recipient:

Chemistry matters. Join us to get the news you need.