UV–vis spectrophotometers that use PDA detectors are able to simultaneously analyze a full spectrum, which is typically 190–1100 nm, as opposed to conventional scanning UV–vis systems, which analyze individual wavelengths as they are scanned across the full spectrum or spectrum of interest for a particular sample. This feature allows PDA-based systems to perform analyses far faster than scanning instruments, while also making PDA-based instruments mechanically simpler, and therefore more reliable. The biggest limitation for PDA instruments is that their performance is limited by how many diodes are fit onto a single detector, which is typically 1024.
Agilent holds by far the largest vendor share in the PDA UV–vis spectroscopy market. In contrast to other major UV–vis system suppliers, PDA systems are the largest focus for Agilent, as opposed to scanning single-beam and dual-beam systems and colorimeters. Thermo Scientific is the next largest competitor, and it has one of the newest models in the market with its Evolution Array model. Although demand is not expected to grow terribly fast, the worldwide market for PDA UV–vis spectroscopy is well over $50 million and should remain solid as the technology capably fills specific end-user requirements.The foregoing data were extracted from SDi's market analysis and perspectives report titled The Global Assessment Report, 12th Edition: The Laboratory Life Science and Analytical Instrument Industry, October 2012. For more information, contact Stuart Press, Vice President, Strategic Directions International, Inc., 6242 Westchester Parkway, Suite 100, Los Angeles, CA 90045, (310) 641-4982, fax: (310) 641-8851, http://www.strategic-directions.com/