Pittcon 2006 New Products Review

May 1, 2006

Emil Ciurczak presents his review of the newest and most interesting products in the field of spectroscopy at the 2006 Pittcon Conference.

Greetings from Orlando. I was asked to share some of the new spectroscopic products to be exhibited at Pittcon 2006. It's a busy time for vendors, but a few were willing to take the time to share some info with us. The hardware and software listed are by no means all the goodies shown, just what we were given to write about.

I don't want any vendor to feel slighted, but, the editorial staff asked for submissions weeks and weeks before the show... and it was still coming in April! Here's what we have to share.

While I was to divide the materials into Atomic, Molecular, and Mass Spec, there had to be some compromises. For example UV–vis is now under "Molecular." In any case, here is what I received.

Atomic Spectroscopy

410 Hg Analyzer (Buck Scientific, East Norwalk, Connecticut) www.bucksci.com: The 410 is a dedicated cold vapor system with a 400-mm Quartz flow cell. It can print directly to a printer, making it CFR 21 compliant. Excellent for trace Hg analysis in water, it offers the lowest detection limits of Hg for less than $10,000.

PTFE and PFA Spray Chambers (Glass Expansion, Inc., Pocasset, Massachusetts) www.geicp.com: This accessory is for ICP-AES and ICP-MS. It features cyclonic spray chambers of high purity and inert materials. It can be used for ultratrace analyses by ICP-MS and analysis of HF containing samples by ICP-AES or ICP-MS. It boasts higher transport efficiency and better precision and has a chemically treated interior surface to enhance the interaction of the sample with the chamber. Helix o-ring-free nebulizer fitting facilitates nebulizer installation and removal and decreases carryover.

Niagara Rapid Rinse Accessory (Glass Expansion, Inc., Pocasset, Massachusetts) www.geicp.com: Another accessory for ICP-AES and ICP-MS, it is a standalone device that mounts in the kitchen area of ICP-MS or ICP-AES. The spectrometer consists of programmable two-way valve that eliminates the sample washout step. All applications of ICP-AES and ICP-MS are run in an unattended manner. It reduces the analysis cycle by 15 to 35%, resulting in greater instrument productivity. The accessory has an adjustable height stand to maximize fast washout. It uses a serial connection to the autosampler to allow use with a wide variety of ICP-AES and ICP-MS models.

SPECTRO Genesis ICP (SPECTRO Analytical Instruments, Inc, Marlborough, Massachusetts) www.spectro.com: A new CCD-ICP-OES spectrometer was introduced. It comes supplied with factory-installed methods. Its suggested applications include environmental testing. Because it is factory calibrated, it should be simple to operate.

The CETAC Aridus II system (CETAC Technologies, Omaha, Nebraska) www.cetac.com: A specialized desolvating-nebulizer for ICP-MS. The Aridus II couples a low-flow PFA nebulizer and spray chamber with a fluoropolymer membrane for maximum chemical resistance (including organics and HF). Benefits include enhanced analyte sensitvity and greatly reduced solvent-based interference (i.e., oxides and hydrides). The CeO/Ce ratio is typically < 0.03%. New features include alleviation of electrostatic effects and the ability to handle higher uptake rates (to 200 μL/min).

The CETAC M-8000 Mercury Analyzer (CETAC Technologies, Omaha, Nebraska) www.cetac.com: This instrument is designed to make some of the most rigorous methodologies simple. The QuickTrace software ensures the validity of calibration techniques by EPA 1631 and 245.7 methods. It can be switched easily from high-concentration analysis to ultratrace analysis with the use of gold traps. The system employs a nonfoaming gas–liquid separator (GLS) for extraction of mercury vapor from liquid. Automated calibrations, sample analysis, quality control, and report generation are built in, satisfying the most demanding sample throughput and quality control requirements. Components of the M-8000 are easily accessible for user maintenance.

LSX-213 Laser Ablation System (CETAC): Delivers high intensity 213-nm, 5-ns laser pulses at rates of 1–20 Hz. The laser output energy is fully adjustable to produce varying amounts of ablation to analyze virtually any solid sample. The laser and optics are thermally and mechanically isolated with no protruding parts, so laser and optical alignment will stay for the lifetime of the system. The built-in mass flow controller allows precise control of helium flow for consistent sample transport into either the ICP-AES or the ICP-MS.

Prodigy-H (ICP-OES), (Teledyne Leeman Labs, Hudson, New Hampshire) www.LeemanLabs.com: The Prodigy-H is designed to permit the measurement of the halogen elements at the same time as the more routine metal measurements. It incorporates all the features of the Prodigy model, but with a deep UV-sensitive detection system for unprecedented wavelength coverage from 134–1100 nm.

The instrument allows analysis of analytes that normally required techniques such as ion chromatography or ion selective electrodes. It measures Cl, Br, and Iodine at sub-ppb levels along with all of the conventional metals.

Prodigy-Mobile Lab (Teledyne Leeman Labs): Good for lab or process applications, this transportable simultaneous ICP spectrometer is named the Prodigy-Mobile Lab. By providing accessibility to laboratory quality ICP-OES instrumentation, the Prodigy-Mobile Lab can accelerate data collection, reduce the cost of producing it, and help to make decisions about site characterization. The engineers worked with truck and trailer manufacturers and remediation companies to determine the hazards associated with on-site transportable operation. Its integral suspension system works with parent vehicle's suspension, isolating the instrument from drive train, road, and shock hazards. The result is laboratory-quality data for in-field operation.

Hydra C (Teledyne Leeman Labs): Another lab or process instrument is the Hydra C, designed for analysts who want to use EPA's new method 7473 or to determine mercury in their sample without prior sample digestion. The Hydra-C employs the optical designs of earlier continuous-flow analyzers, coupled with gold amalgamation purge-and-trap preconcentration to achieve high sensitivity and low noise. It uses Windows 2000 programming and is fully automated, with computer control of all instrument parameters and functions. An on-line balance is available for electronic sample weight input. It is a direct combustion mercury analyzer, available with cold vapor atomic absorption (CVAA) or cold vapor atomic fluorescence (CVAF). CVAF provides for lower limits of detection and longer dynamic range than CVAA. Hydra-C combusts the sample to release mercury vapor. Solid and liquid samples are loaded onto Hydra-C's autosampler and analyzed without acid digestion. The combustion process does not require the conversion of mercury to mercuric. There is no need for reagents such as strong acids, oxidizers, and reductants or hazardous waste to be disposed of. The Hydra-C can reduce both analysis time and cost.

Prism ICP (Teledyne Leeman Labs): Teledyne Leeman Labs has expanded its product line with the new Prism ICP, a high-performance simultaneous ICP that incorporates their most recent innovation in solid-state detection, the C-PAD (Composite Programmable Array Detector). It is designed to generate accurate results fast at a low price. Like all Leeman Echelle spectrometers, Prism was designed with attention to optical performance. With its long focal length Echelle spectrometer provides the spectral resolution needed for interference-free measurements along with the stray light rejection needed to ensure low detection limits in complex sample matrices. Prism's C-PAD simultaneous detection system offers access to a vast array of wavelengths between 177 and 900 nm and provides independent in-pixel processing so signals for all wavelengths are optimized automatically; intense emissions do not saturate the detector and less intense emissions have minimal read noise. This means Prism provides exceptional linear dynamic range together with very low limits of detection. The Prism is available in Axial, Radial, or Dual View configurations to offer the versatility needed to today's broad range of applications.

iCAP 6000 Series (Thermo Electron Corp., Madison, Wisconsin) www.thermo.com/elemental: The iCAP series is reported to deliver up to five times improvement in performance and dramatically cut purge gas consumption. With a small footprint, the iCAP 6500 provides flexibility and productivity. These instruments are suited specifically to the needs of general and elemental analysis laboratories in the environmental, petrochemical, metal, food and beverage, geochemical, and cement industries. Able to perform nondestructive readout, this detector allows high-intensity signals to be read very rapidly, while lower intensity signals are accumulated over a longer time, ensuring optimum signal to noise and resistance to saturation. The RACID86 detector allows for selective regions of interest (ROI) and random access pixel addressing, improving dynamic range and sample throughput. The Series is equipped with a high-power, solid state RF generator capable of handling all sample types. A distributed purge system offers reduced gas consumption and improved performance for elements such as arsenic (As), antimony (Sb), selenium (Se), and tellurium (Te). Fully automated wavelength calibration and offset correction ensure excellent long-term stability. The ergonomic design of a large 270° door allows unrestricted access to a large sample compartment and peristaltic pump, while the inner enclosure has a large viewing window for convenient observation of the plasma. The iCAP 6300 offers fast, reliable, and simplified performance for routine analysis, and is available with either a dedicated Radial or Duo plasma source. The Radial view achieves optimum performance and minimum interference for difficult samples such as metals or used oils. Alternatively, the Duo offers the flexibility of axial view for lowest detection limits and Radial view for reduced interference, ideal for environmental samples. The iCAP 6500 provides flexibility and productivity, and is operated via software with automated set-up and automatic optimization. This system includes an intelligent operation mode that groups functions together, minimizing overhead time and ensuring a typical time saving of 15% for an analysis in which both axial and radial measurements are being made.

Model RA-3420 Automated Mercury Analyzer (Nippon Instruments Corp., College Station, Texas) www.nic-mercury.us/RA-3420.htm: Cold vapor atomic absorption spectrometry (CVAAS) fully automates the sample preparation and analysis of mercury in environmental samples. Wastewater-permit monitoring, drinking water, surface waters, biological fluids, and more. Reportedly the only system that fully automates the sample preparation and analysis without user intervention. It contains preprogrammed methods for specific EPA Methods, along with fully customizable protocols.

GD-PROFILER 2 (Horiba Jobin Yvon, Edison, New Jersey) www.jobin.yvon.com: Elemental analysis and depth profiling of solid samples — conductors, nonconductors, and semiconductors. Utilization of the new pulsed rf-source allows the analysis of fragile samples such as organic materials without melting or glasses without cracking. Custom sample holders have been developed to handle various sample geometries and thicknesses. Also, the new sample area allows for the handling of very large samples.

ICPE-9000 (Shimadzu, Columbia, Maryland): Shimadzu's new ICP system includes an echelle spectrometer and a 1-megapixel CCD detector.

Mechelle 5000 Echelle Spectrograph (Andor, South Windsor, Connecticut): Based upon the echelle grating principal, the Mechelle 5000's patented optical design provides very high throughput, extremely low cross talk, and equally spaced order separation. This "no moving parts" Mechelle spectrograph is combined with Andor's iStar ICCD detector system to provide sensitivity and includes fast or slow gating, wide spectral response, minimum insertion delay, and a compact spectrograph/detector package. The Mechelle spectrograph and iStar ICCD detector combination can be used for a number of application areas including combustion, laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy, and laser-induced fluorescence experiments.

New SpectraPro HRE (Princeton Instruments/Acton) www.piacton.com: This is the new SpectraPro HRE high-resolution echelle spectrograph. The system represents a unique approach to spectrograph design, suited for use with PI/Acton's CCD and ICCD camera systems. The unit achieves high spectral resolution over the entire wavelength range of the camera without any moving parts. The system is ideal for general spectroscopy applications as well as laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy. It utilizes the echelle grating principle, in which multiple orders of diffraction are separated by a cross-dispersive prism before they are imaged onto a CCD. (Wavelengths ranging from 190–1050 nm continuously without any moving parts.) Interchangeable wavelength-dispersive elements offer the option of choosing the best resolution and wavelength for any application. The element can be changed to suit a different resolution or wavelength coverage requirement. A wide selection of input apertures can be selected, from as small as 10 μm to as large as 100 μm.

XRF

XRF Sample Cups with Internal Overflow Reservoirs (Chemplex Industries, Inc., Palm City, Florida) http://chemplex.com Used for liquid sample substances for XRF spectrochemical analysis. It retains the overflow of liquid sample materials within the sample cup and averts potential damage to the X-ray system. Designed with internal overflow reservoirs and easy-to-assemble sleeves.

Vortex SMCD [Software] (SII NanoTechnology USA, Inc., Northridge, California) http://www.siintusa.com: Lab or process applications. Software comes in a small package and is, in essence, data-acquisition software available with processor; used in SEM. It is compatible with most equipment and can be used in process applications. Some suggested applications are: XRF, XRD, synchrotron, microanalysis. It has a large active area and is fast and stable, with a solid angle. It endures a 3-min cool-down without degradation. Liquid nitrogen is not needed. It has a high count rate, with no peak shift or loss in resolution.

Eagle Automated Filter System (EDAX Inc., Mahwah, New Jersey) www.edax.com: Primary XRF Beam Filter system for Eagle 3 XPL micro-XRF elemental analyzer. It has six filters (Al [thin], Ti, Ni, Nb, Al [thick], and Rh, to absorb specific energy bands), and an Open and a Shutter position, bringing about improved sensitivity and elimination of Bragg diffractive noise.

Eagle μ-Probe (EDAX Inc.): This is a small-area probe for such applications as the authentication of coins and gemstones. It uses energy dispersive X-ray fluorescence (DXRF) for elemental analyses of elements from sodium to uranium, simultaneously, in a nondestructive, noncontact manner. Samples need not undergo pretreatments, which could damage antiques and valuable gems.

Innov-X Mobile High Performance XRF (Innov-XSystems, Inc., Woburn, Massachusetts) www.innovxsys.com: Operating at up to 50 times the power of handheld XRF units plus a 50 kV tube voltage, the MobiLab X50 yields excellent performance throughout the periodic table of elements. The Innov-X MobiLab X50 Unit features a self-contained radiation enclosure and flexible analysis chamber with touch-screen computer operation. The unit provides portable XRF detection levels for challenging elements such as Cd, Sn, Sb, Ba, precious metals, and rare earths. Five electronically controlled primary beam filters provide optimized performance with up to 10W of in-field tube power. Applications such as RoHS compliance-screening benefit from the lower detection limits for Cd and other elements to 10 PPM and below, even in alloys, making it ideal for both the EU RoHS and Packaging Directives. Other applications span environmental for in-field analysis of soils, filter media, etc. to catalysts for rare earth analysis and from mining field use to alloy applications.

Innov-X Software to Aid RoHS compliance (Innov-XSystems, Inc.): The RoHS-SCAN software enables rapid screening of electronics systems, PC boards, plastic parts, and components for RoHS compliance. The software makes it possible to screen large quantities of electronics and components quickly without stopping to re-program the XRF system for each sample tested. It automatically senses and adjusts for the different types — alloy, plastic, or mixed samples. Mixed samples, consisting of both plastic and alloy, can be wires and/or finished circuit boards. It uses settings, algorithms, and calibrations that are best suited to the specific sample. The software simplifies screening, as described by IEC protocol, with its PASS/FAIL guidelines. Alternatively, users can customize the analysis by entering their specific PASS/FAIL criteria. The screen clearly displays information for each sample, as well as indicating whether the overall sample is compliant or not. Portable XRF is ideal as the nondestructive testing (NDT) method for RoHS screening. It is described in a protocol published by the IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission) Advisory Committee on Environmental Aspects. Such screening allows manufacturers to segregate leaded and lead-free inventory, perform due diligence testing to verify supplier certifications, and integrate with process quality control for ISO 9000.

XDS MasterLab (FOSS, Laurel, Maryland): This technology offers pharmaceutical manufacturers a rapid, reliable test method covering the full array of solid dosage forms: layered, coated, or cored tablets, capsules, caplets, geltabs, and gelcaps. The versatile sampling mechanism of the MasterLab offers an automated and unattended reflectance or transmission analysis of a tray of multiple tablets or vials. The transmission mode for tablets provides a representative whole body measurement whereas the reflectance mode measures the outside layers.

Molecular Spectroscopy (Vibrational and Electronic)

UV–Vis

ReflectaScan Spectrophotometer (Cecil Instruments Ltd., Milton Technical Centre, Cambridge, UK) www.cecilinstruments.com: The neat solution for reflectance and transmittance applications with onboard calculations for full standalone usage. ESEF-enabled only and usable for process applications. It can be used to measure film thickness of silicon diode photocells, determination and/or measurement of paint color, matching paint colors, brightness of paper, transmittance and reflectance of contact lenses and spectacle lenses, etc. It also can be used for film thickness of coated lenses; thickness of films; measurement of transmittance in turbid samples such as in blood and brewing media; and the diffuse reflectance of powder samples.

AvaSpec-3648-USB2 Spectrometer (Avantes BV, Eerbeek, The Netherlands) www.avantes.com: A Hand-held UV–vis device, (175 mm × 110 mm × 44 mm), weighing 716 g. It has an internal SD card for onboard data saving, deep UV detector coating, slits, order-sorting filters, order-sorting coatings, a detector collection lens for UV–vis; used in transmission and reflection for irradiance or color. It has an optional Bluetooth interface for USB2 platform, including antenna and battery pack. It may be used in LIBS, Plasma monitoring, UV–vis absorbance, color measurements, irradiance, LED measurements, etc. It has high resolution, wide dynamic range, and fast data transfer.

Oriel Matrix Spectrometer (Newport Corporation, Stratford, Connecticut), www.newport.com: Only UV–vis spectrometer using patented MMS technology on the market; provides 12X higher throughput and SNR than conventional slit-based instruments, can be integrated into other equipment. This is a standalone instrument that can be used for process applications.

Model 508 UV–vis Process Analyzer (Guided Wave Inc., Rancho Cordova, California) www.guided-wave.com: Chemical and polymer plants, refining and petrochemical, pharmaceuticals and other specialty chemicals, paints and varnishes, adhesives, wastewater management, biotech, etc. Multichannel design from 1–4 channels, fiber optic, rapid data collection with enhanced diode array miniaturized optical bench, analyzer control program developed in LabVIEW featuring customizable engineering and trending capability, two-way Modbus communications with built-in event setup, compatible with Guided Wave's proven probe and flow cell products, thermal control unit to maintain critical internal temperature, individual pulsed-xenon source on each channel, optional built-in 4–20 mA communication by SNAP I/O. On-line analyzer provides full-spectrum scanning (235 nm–850 nm), built-in instrument control unit (PC) with touchscreen and Windows XP OS, chemometric model compatible, rugged and easy-to-field service.

XSR Xtreme Solarization-resistant Optical Fiber Assemblies (Ocean Optics, Inc., Dunedin, Florida) www.OceanOptics.com: Reportedly distinguished by enhanced UV transmission performance (signal will transmit to 180 nm) and remarkable resistance to UV degradation, making them suited to deep-UV applications (< 300 nm). XSR Fiber comes in several core diameter sizes and lengths, and couples to Ocean Optics spectrometers and accessories via SMA 905 Connectors. XSR Optical Fiber Assemblies are available in core diameters of 235 μm and 455 μm, in standard lengths of 25 cm, 1 m, and 2 m (custom lengths also can be ordered). A 6-around-1 reflection probe version also is available. Shorter length assemblies are recommended for applications requiring maximum UV throughput. Each assembly has aluminum coating, stainless steel BX jacketing, and high-quality SMA 905 Connectors.

Fiber optic flow cells for absorption and fluorescence (RoMack, Inc., Williamsburg, Virginia), www.romackfiberoptics.com: RoMack has developed a new line of measurements offering pathlengths from 1 mm to 1 m and exhibiting capabilities from the UV through NIR applications. These are unique products offering the widest possible application in harsh environments, including high temperature and aggressive chemicals.

FLUORESCENCE

Picosecond Pulsed Diode Lasers (Edinburgh Instruments Ltd., Livingston, UK) www.edinst.com: Contains a built-in controller and is compatible with most instruments. It works well as a light source for fluorescence spectrometers. It works well as a low-cost, built-in controller, with 10 repetition frequencies, optimized for TCSPC.

F-7000 Fluorescence Spectrophotometer (Hitachi High Technologies America, Schaumburg, Illinois), www.hitachi-hta.com: With a Micro Plate Reader, 60,000 nm/min scanning, and 3D time measurements, this instrument is 21CFR11 compliant with optional software. Sensitivity and high-speed scan rate for 3D time measurements with an S/N of 800 or more for Raman scattering of water and 60,000 nm/min scan rates.

NanoLog NanoSizer software (Horiba Jobin Yvon): Fluorescence for determining the diameter and chirality of carbon nanotubes. 21CFR11 compliant, it is good for Quantum dots and carbon nanotubes. Patent pending "Double Convolution Spectral Surface Simulation Algorithm" is used for carbon nanotubes and chirality analysis.

MID-RANGE INFRARED

InfraRan SF6 Specific Vapor Analyzer (Wilks Enterprise, Inc., South Norwalk, Connecticut) www.wilksir.com: Lab and process applications due to its portability design. It is (381 mm × 185 mm × 191 mm), 18 lbs and is specifically designed for on-site measurements. It contains an internal, rechargeable battery pack providing up to 12 h of continuous field operation. It is a factory-calibrated, portable infrared analyzer to measure SF6 concentrations in ambient air; available to measure low levels 0–2 ppm for tracer gas studies or for higher concentration levels. Ideal to measure low levels of SF6 used as a tracer gas for fume hood and ventilation studies. Also available to measure higher concentration ranges. It also can be operated using AC power.

InfraSpec VFA-IR Spectrometer (Wilks Enterprise, Inc.): Another lab or process instrument, it is only 12.7 cm × 7.6 cm × 3.8 cm. Used in transmission or reflection, this ATR InfraSpec VFA-IR Spectrometer utilizes a patented design consisting of an elongated, electronically modulated source on one end and a linear variable filter (LVF) and 64 pixel detector array on the other. The result is a compact spectrometer with no moving parts, no optical path exposed to air. An LVF typically covers an octave in wavelength (i.e.: 2.5–5.0 nm [400–2000 cm-1 ] or 5.5–11.0 nm [1818-910 cm-1 ]). It includes a simple interface for nontechnical operators to either verify a material or take a quantitative measurement in a process or field environment. Portable, it can be battery powered. It is ideal for at-line analyses: material verification, alcohol in beverages, trans-fatty acid in oil, flexible film analysis, D2O in water, quantitative analysis. It is inexpensive, portable, easy to use and rugged. Ideal for on-site or at-line applications.

ESP-1000 Ammonia Monitor [Laser-based, Cavity Ringdown Spectroscopy] (Picarro, Inc., Sunnyvale, California) www.picarro.com: Used to measure semiconductor ambient air monitoring, atmospheric ammonia flux measurements, and control of ammonia slip in catalytic reactions that use selective catalytic reduction. It is claimed to be more accurate and precise in measurement, made fast enough for real-time control. It achieves a detection limit of better than 0.1 ppbv in a few minutes

uFind and EZSet for uMAX IR Microscope (PIKE Technologies, Madison, Wisconsin) www.piketech.com: Easy-to-use and fast sample positioning — PIKE Technologies MAX IR microscope. Convenient and easy-to-use, See-Thru aperture with X-Y positioning. Can perform microanalysis of fibers, single crystals, and defects in manufactured materials.

Poseiden-5000 (Axiom Analytical, Irvine, California)www.goaxiom.com: This instrument is based upon the sparging infrared technique, making possible the use of a vapor phase measurement to analyze liquid concentrations. The discharge of organic chemicals into the water is an endemic problem at most large chemical manufacturing plants. Such plants generally employ remediation facilities to purify their wastewater before discharging it into the environment.

Conventional detection methods typically involve slow techniques such as GC or GC–MS. The sparging infrared technique takes advantage of the fact that the concentrations of pollutant vapors in an air vapor stream being sparged through a volume of water will be in equilibrium with the liquid phase concentrations in the water. Measurement of the vapor concentrations can be performed quickly and easily by using FT-IR spectroscopy. The wastewater analysis system usually will be calibrated to report on those volatile organics that might be present in a given plant environment, a small number of components. Axiom has measured as many as 15 different species simultaneously during lab simulation. In routine operation, the measured concentrations will be reported via the plant's network. For analytical purposes, the time-dependent depletion curves can be monitored on the system's monitor.

HT/HP Heat Chamber for Diffuse Reflectance (PIKE Technologies): A high-temperature and high-pressure heat chamber for diffuse reflectance. This cell is heatable to 900 °C and operates at pressures up to 1500 psi, and is used for the study of chemical reactions at high temperature, vacuum and/or high pressure analysis of air-sensitive materials and catalysis. The unique design provides exceptionally easy access for insertion and removal of samples.

TGA/FTIR Accessory (PIKE Technologies): A heated flow cell for evolved gas analysis from a TGA furnace. The PIKE TGA/FTIR accessory is designed for maximum IR throughput and optimized gas flow. The accessory installs into the sample compartment of your FTIR and includes a heated transfer line for transfer of the evolved gases from your TGA furnace. It can be used for identification and quantification of evolved gases from the TGA for the polymer, pharmaceutical, and chemical industries.

ValveView (Remspec Corporation, Sturbridge, Massachusetts) www.remspec.com: A Fiber-optic link to FTIR spectrometer. Grazing-angle reflectance from interior surface of small hollow parts, can be used in various other equipment. Good for cleaning validation; easy set-up to perform grazing-angle FTIR inside hollow parts; interchangeable with SpotView fiber-optic grazing-angle head.

ReactionSleuth (Remspec Corporation, Charlton, Massachusetts) www.remspec.com: Useful for the analysis of spectral datasets from reaction monitoring experiments. Its primary benefits are PCA/Target transformation, peak fitting, and trend identification using GRAMS multifiles. It works with any GRAMS multifile. (A Demo is downloadable from website).

PPLN Oven & Temperature Controller (Super Optronics, Inc., Gardena, California) www.SuperOptronics.com: This instrument is usable for IR and visible to UV laser sources.

E-Z Quick Table Top KBr Pellet Press, International Crystal Laboratories (www.internationalcrystal.net): Vertical mounting enables the use of body weight and shoulder muscles, so the E-Z Quick Press requires minimal strength to operate. Can be used with 2 mm, 4 mm, and 7 mm die sets, usable for process applications; requires minimal strength to operate. It can be used to make 2 mm, 4 mm, and 7 mm KBr pellets. It is constructed from stainless steel, chrome-plated steel, and anodized aluminum for long corrosion-free service. There is a dial indicator to enable reproduction of force settings from pellet to pellet.

Spectrum 100 FT-IR and 100N FT-NIR spectrometers (PerkinElmer, Wellesley, Massacusetts) www.perkinelmer.com: These instruments are designed with a UATR accessory that is designed to offer higher efficiencies for the analysis of a wide range of samples. The instruments also feature a fiber-optic NIT probe, an updated version of the company's Spectrum and AssureID software packages, and a Go Button feature, which reportedly allows continuous analyses of multiple samples at the instrument.

NEAR-INFRARED

SpectraStar 6500 (Unity Scientific, Inc., Purcellville, Virginia) www.unityscientific.com: This new spectrometer allows easy database transfer from older units. The TransStar is used to transfer existing databases. Some suggested applications are: QC/QA analysis for food, dairy, general industry, and pharmaceutical. It has an expanded wavelength range, easy operation, easy-to-transfer databases. It also has an on-board monitor with one-touch operation.

ProStar 1800 (Unity Scientific, Inc.): This is a process, diode-array (1120–1820 nm range) NIR analyzer for multi-element analysis from a single or multiple points. The unit uses LAN, USB, or wireless communications.

NIRFlex N-500Full Modularity and Flexibility in NIR spectroscopy, Büchi, Flawil, Switzerland): Buchi introduced a range of new developments based upon its proven FT-NIR instrument line. The instrument has been designed for applications using a wide array of measurement cells designed to fit every application. Seven different measurement options can be changed through a simple plug-and-play of interchangeable modules to suit a particular application. Examples of this flexibility are numerous and include two fiber optic probe modules for solid or liquid samples and a liquid cell accommodating up to six cuvettes under controlled temperature conditions. The NIRFlex Solids is the ideal configuration for the determination of solid samples (i.e., meat products, semisolids and powdered samples, agri-foods, and animal feeds) and viscous products such as gels and creams. The Solids Module for the NIRFlex N-500 can be equipped with four different measurement options, enabling one unit to be used for petri dishes, a six-vial autosampler, a tablet sampler, and a top-mounted adapter for accommodating a wide variety of sample containers such as sample bags or large containers. With flexibility and performance, the NIRFlex N-500 is the ultimate for full modularity in NIR spectroscopy.

XDS Near-infrared MultiVial Analyzer (FOSS NIRSystems, Inc., Laurel, Maryland), www.foss.dk: This new module for the popular FOSS NIR analyzer allows a series of sample-containing vials to run unattended. Various vial sizes are accepted (determining the number of samples). Six large vials or up to 20 small vials are accepted. The purpose is to aid in both method development and QC work. The unit is "hot swappable" with other XDS modules.

AvaSpec-NIR256 (Avantes BV): This instrument's dimensions are 175 × 165 × 85 mm. It can be used in fiber optics probes and light sources. It has a Bluetooth interface for USB2 platform, including antenna and battery pack. In absorbance measurements, it is used for moisture content. It has a small footprint platform for UV–vis–NIR measurement with multichannel set-up. The AvaSpec-NIR256 has 256 pixels and can be combined with all other AvaSpec-USB2 platform spectrometers in the UV–vis range to make a multichannel spectrometer system that covers a wide range from 200 nm–2.2 μm.

LabSpec 2500/2600 Series (Analytical Spectral Devices, Inc., Boulder, Colorado) www.asdi.com: The LabSpec 2500/2600 series incorporates LabSpec Pro's broad spectral range (350–2500 nm), combined with ethernet and optional wireless functionality, a more ruggedized package with nonslip, urethane endcaps, and expanded temperature operating parameters for reliability even in extreme environments. In addition to the ASD Indico Pro software, the LabSpec 2500/2600 series includes a streamlined compatibility with LabVIEW software for autonomous control of the spectrometer. The new series also offers enhanced remote diagnostics, embedded remote trigger port, and the new NIR Cooled InGaAs TurboScanner technology from ASD. LabSpec 2600 is the higher resolution version of the series. The LabSpec 2500/2600 Series is a rapid, non-destructive, postdispersive style system with extremely low stray-light for more robust qualitative and quantitative applications. The standard SMA 905 fiber optic connectors and ASD's wide array of sampling accessories offer maximum flexibility, making LabSpec 2500 and 2600 spectrometers suited to a growing list of applications for solids, powders, slurries, and liquids; raw and in-process materials, and finished products.

TEQS PowerFlex Optical Fiber (IQ Inc., Phoenix, Arizona): TEQS PowerFlex optical fiber is a lower cost, higher reliability silica core optical fiber that is available for building UV-vis-NIR fiber optic probes. TEQS PowerFlex is available in more sizes than competing hard polymer coated silica/silica fiber and hard clad silica, with higher numerical apertures, greater tensile strength and superior spectral performance; Available with colored buffer coatings to minimize stray light coupling.

FFM Series gas cells for NIR (Axiom Analytical, Inc., Irvine, California), www.goaxiom.com: Highly sensitive near-IR analysis of vapors has been made possible by the advent of tunable laser spectrometers and the development of specifically designed long-path gas cells. One key element is the spectral radiance of the tunable laser source. A second important element is the laser's high coherence. This has paved the way for long path gas cells (the FFM Series), which are said to be more robust than the White cells typically used by FTIR and dispersive instruments. The performance of FFM Series gas cells is possible because of the degree of mechanical precision and robust materials (fused silica and stainless steel) in contact with the process stream. These are combined with an optical design that allows the cell to be aligned while being assembled by using a fiber-coupled visible laser source. The FFM cell can be disassembled, cleaned with common solvents, reassembled, and realigned in minutes. The FFM highly is suitable in applications such as dryer off-gas monitoring where upset conditions can occasionally coat the interior of the cell with powders or other contaminants.

Antaris near-infrared (NIR) analyzers (Thermo Electron Corp.): These new instruments are available with a choice of software packages, including the latest version of RESULT software, featuring corrections for transferring data across sampling techniques and fiber optics. The OMNIC software complements the automation power of the RESULT software with cutting-edge spectroscopic analysis tools for method developers. The Unscrambler software from CAMO is used for advanced chemometric modeling and method development. Instruments are for process engineers and plant managers working in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, food, chemical, and pulp and paper industries. The Antaris analyzers benefit from a common platform design and are suited for method development, raw materials analysis, batch-reaction monitoring, on- and off-line moisture analysis, real-time blend uniformity analysis, and tablet analysis. Additionally, they are ready for implementation as PAT in the pharmaceutical industry. The new Antaris II offers a common platform of method, procedure, and data transferability of analytical quality control methods along product development and scale-up processes. Thermo's Antaris MX and EX FT-NIR process analyzers are designed specifically for extending the Antaris offering into process control applications.

FPT-855 Near-IR Transmission Probe (Axiom Analytical, Inc.): This instrument features an integral heating jacket that eliminates fouling due to the condensation of product on the probe surfaces. It also shares the robust qualities of the company's FPT-850 extreme duty probe. This probe was developed to provide maximum long-term reliability under the extreme conditions of high temperature, thermal shock, and aggressive chemistries encountered in many on-line process applications. A key element is a proprietary sealing technique involving a direct sapphire to Hastelloy welded pressure seal. A high degree of chemical resistance is assured by the fact that the only materials in contact with the process are sapphire, Hastelloy, and a thin flash of either gold or PTFE (application dependant). The compliance required to withstand extreme temperature cycling is provided by the Hastelloy seal, which is compressed at high pressure prior to welding. This approach eliminates fatigue and stress failures common with brazed seals. Finally, the elimination of elastomeric seals provides for reliable long-term operation at temperatures as high as to 400 °C.

FieldSpectroscopy.com: A Resource Blog for the Remote Sensing and Field Spectroscopy Community (Analytical Spectral Devices, Inc.): This website is for relevant information related to remote sensing and field spectroscopy. The site offers links to white papers, organizations, journals, funding sources, and the most inclusive calendar of earth sciences conferences available worldwide. FieldSpectroscopy.com is sponsored by ASD for the remote sensing and field spectroscopy community at large. The site also offers a discussion forum to facilitate an exchange of information, ideas, techniques, and whatever else spectroscopy users find relevant, as well as a place to pose application and technical questions. While the site is moderated by ASD personnel, it is for the purpose of providing access to recognized experts in the field, not to censor or control the information. All ASD personnel are clearly identified. In addition to ASD expert personnel, the site's membership includes other renowned practitioners around the world. Information on the general site and links sections is open to anyone interested, though registration is required to post comments or participate in the forum.

FAR INFRARED (Terahrtz)

Far-IR / ATR crystal plate options for PIKE MIRacle and PIKE VeeMAX ATR (PIKE Technologies): Appl. Inorganic pigments, fillers, modifiers in pharmaceutical, polymer, and chemical industries. Fixed angle and variable angle versions. Depth profiling far-IR/ATR.

uFind and EZSet for uMAX IR Microscope (PIKE Technologies): Used for the microanalysis of fibers, single crystals, and defects in manufactured materials. It claims to be easy-to-use and have fast sample positioning for the PIKE Technologies MAX IR microscope. Convenient and easy-to-use, see-thru aperture with X, Y, and Z positioning.

Far-IR/ATR Options (PIKE Technologies): Far-IR/ATR crystal plate options for PIKE MIRacle and PIKE VeeMAX ATR. Used for inorganic pigments, fillers, modifiers in pharmaceutical, polymer, and chemical industries. It has fixed angle and variable angle versions; depth profiling far-IR/ATR.

RAMAN

SE 1000 Surface Enhanced Raman Spectrometer (Mesophotonics, Southampton, UK) http://mesophotonics.com Optimized for Klarite SERS measurements "Automated sample alignment" has a "Built-in video." SERS data-handling software is included. Good for trace-level molecular analysis, forensics, homeland security, protein analysis, and water contamination. Plug-and-play SERS; up to 1 million times higher sensitivity than Raman; first system optimized for analytical SERS measurements.

"alpha300 R" Confocal Raman Microscope (WITec GmbH, Ulm, Germany) http://www.witec.de: Used for materials science, life sciences, polymer science, geology, thin films and coating analyses, emulsions, and in pharmaceutical research. Faster image acquisition at a resolution down to 200 nm. New full digital control unit for highest flexibility and user friendliness 3-D Raman imaging (x-z-scans or x-y-stacks). Allows a comprehensive understanding of the structural and chemical properties of a sample. It allows complete spectrum per pixel- accusation time per spectrum below 100 ms. The image consists of tens of thousands spectra all stored on the computer for further analyses. Depth profiling capabilities: full digital microscope controller. Upgrade possibilities to AFM and/or NSOM.

Aurora Silica Fiber for Raman, IQ Inc.: Aurora fiber is silica core, silica-clad fiber that is coated with a tow micron barrier layer of gold to eliminate polymer coatings' Raman interference. The gold/polyimide hybrid buffer fiber is much stronger and more durable than standard buffer fibers with standard proof test at 200 kpsi. Aurora is available in bulk (spools), for OEM building of Raman fiber optic probes, or IQinc can design and build probes for you. Other metal-coated fibers are extremely expensive, are difficult to work with, are relatively fragile, and present packing problems due to sloppy tolerances in the metal coating dimensions. Aurora fiber handles like standard polyimide coated fiber, has > 5× more precise dimensions, is extremely durable, and costs far less.

First Defender XL (Ahura Corp., Wilmington, Massachusetts) www.ahuracorp.com: Raman-based, handheld spectrometer for use with liquids and solids. Using DecisionEngine software, the instrument can identify pure substances as well as mixtures. The algorithm can identify up to five root components in mixture. It is good for chemical agents, toxic chemicals, white powders, narcotics, contraband, and forensics applications.

Identifier (Ahura Corp.): Handheld at 12" × 6" × 3". Completely self-contained rugged battery powered instrument including computer, chemometric software, and signature library. This Raman spectrometer is reportedly accurate, reliable, and rugged. It meets MIL STD 810-F for full outdoor temperature, submersion in water, salt, sand/dust, shock ,and vibration. Sophisticated mixture analysis software identifies underlying components of mixtures including powders, solids, and liquids. Complete software package, signature library, and future upgrades are included in the purchase price. Will be 21CFR11 compliant in Spring 2006. For use with pharmaceutical manufacturing, product authentication, Hazmat and white powders, narcotics/forensics, military weapons and explosives, counterterrorism, and inspection.

EZRaman-C (Enwave Optronics, Inc., Irvine California) www.enwaveopt.com: New sample holders: 5" × 5" × 8". A low-cost model specially designed for surface enhancement, Raman portable with software included. Good for SERS, education labs, measurements of gems or other solid samples. Could be used upright for measurement of solid or sideways for measurements of vials and cuvettes.

MICROWAVE

Discover BenchMate (CEM, Matthews, North Carolina): BenchMate offers the most popular features with the smallest footprint on the market, yet still allows access to all of the upgrade paths available through the modular accessories in the full line. This platform is designed for versatility and ease-of use. It accommodates elevated temperature reactions using CEM's patent-pending IntelliVent vessel, a self-regulating pressurized vial, instead of the usual static pressure transducers found with most microwave systems. IntelliVent is designed to release the pressure generated by a reaction automatically if it exceeds the operating limit of 300 psi (~20 bar), providing a safe, efficient, microwave-assisted synthesis accessory for your applications.

MICROSCOPY

Model 150-2D Calibration Specimen (Advanced Surface Microscopy, Indianapolis, Indiana), http://www.asmicro.com: A 3 mm × 4 mm accessory for SEM, STM, and AFM calibration of specimens. This device is used for the nanometer-scale calibration of microscopes.

LabRAM HR NANO (Horiba Jobin Yvon, Edison New Jersey) www.jobinyvon.com: An atomic force microscope (AFM) has been optically and mechanically coupled to a LabRAM HR to enable tip-enhanced Raman scattering (TERS). Surface enhancement of material in contact with a gold- or silver-coated AFM tip will improve spatial resolution to at least 100 nm. AFM control is integrated into standard LabSpec software. 21CFR11compliant, this is materials characterization on the submicrometer scale with higher spatial resolution

Mass Spectrometry

SOURCE LCMS-5000 and 5001 LCMS Gas Generator (Parker Balston - Analytical Gas Systems, Haverhill, Massachusetts) www.parker.com/ags: A new Gas Supply for LC mass spectrometers. Compatible with all Applied BioSystems MDS Sciex LC–MS-API systems. Eliminates all nitrogen gas cylinders and all zero-air gas cylinders, saves money, maximizes uptime, and improves sensitivity with the highest pressure and purity available.

LTQ Orbitrap (Thermo Electron Corp.): A hybrid mass spectrometer, the LTQ Orbitrap represents the first totally new mass analyzer to be introduced to the market in over 20 years; applications to small molecule research, drug discovery, proteomics, metabolite identification, and metabolomics. Combining Orbitrap technology with the Finnigan LTQ front-end, the LTQ Orbitrap reportedly enables faster, more sensitive, and more reliable detection and identification of compounds in complex mixtures. Results demonstrate that its outstanding mass accuracy, mass resolution, and routine, high-sensitivity MSn performance make it a clear alternative to existing hybrid TOF systems.

Pegasus IV GC-TOFMS (LECO, St. Joseph, Michigan) www.leco.com: System combines TOF-MS technology with new advanced ChromaTOF 3 software to provide an increase in laboratory productivity. Full range acquisition rates, up to 500 spectra/s, reduces chromatographic analysis time. The introduction of the unique Dynamic Signal Tracking (DST) system is said to enhance Pegasus III dynamic range, spectral integrity, and overall system robustness. Automated data processing capabilities are designed to minimize manual manipulations and enhances data quality. Automated qualitative sample characterization, quantitative analysis, and/or intersample measurements reportedly can be completed rapidly. The Pegasus IV also offers data mining algorithms that automatically detect and extract previously unobserved analytes buried beneath sample matrix or other interfering analytes. The ChromaTOF software package extends these unique data processing capabilities to LC-TOF-MS analysis as well. The package creates a common interface and data processing functionality across the LECO Separation Science Product Line combining the strength of the Pegasus IV GC-TOFMS and the LC-TOF-MS system under a single platform.

LCT Premier XE (Waters, Milford, Massachusetts) www.waters.com: Based upon proven and reliable technology, the LCT Premier XE provides unrivalled all round performance for those challenging LC–MS applications. Its high-sensitivity Z-Spray ion source, ion transfer optics, and TOF analyzer create a sensitive benchtop oa-TOF instrument capable of detecting very low-level components with full spectral information. Enhanced resolution (up to 15,000 FWHM over 30,000 m/z) spectral data provides the capability of high accuracy exact mass measurements providing improved data specificity through elemental composition calculations resulting in an increased confidence in your data. It provides a powerful platform for MS analyses, upon which total system solutions can be designed. It has a small footprint and is optimized for simplified connection to a LC system.

Extended Dynamic Range MAGNUM Electron Multipliers (BURLE Electro-Optics, Inc., Sturbridge, Massachusetts) www.burle.com: These models are designed specifically for most major mass spectrometers and new high performance designs in the market. These MAGNUMs reportedly offer higher performance, extended linearity over a wider current range, higher count rates, and lower noise compared to OEM electron multipliers and existing technology. MAGNUM Electron Multipliers utilize BURLE's Spiraltron technology. The MAGNUM Electron Multiplier cartridge is a plug-in replacement that fits directly into the mounting assembly for most mass spectrometers. Its one-piece construction eliminates fastener and connection problems for tool-free, fast, and inexpensive installation. The mounting assembly also is available from BURLE when needed.

SOFTWARE

ACD/Web Librarian (Advanced Chemistry Development, Inc. (ACD/Labs, Toronto, Canada), www.acdlabs.com/weblibrarian: 21CFR11 compliant, this software can be validated according to codes used in other equipment. It is a server-based application that enables data viewing from remote computers through the web interface (Microsoft Internet Explorer is recommended). ACD/Web Librarian can support the browser-based viewing of over 130 file formats, including database formats; ACD/Labs Spectral Databases; ACD/Labs PhysChem databases; ACD/Labs chemical databases; MDL ISIS databases; analytical formats; ASCII, NetCDF, JCAMP, Thermo Galactic SPC. All of the analytical file formats supported by ACD/SpecManager (most major instrument suppliers) ACD/Labs Spectrum; Chemical Formats; MDL molfile, SDfile, SKC, rxnfile; ACD/ChemSketch; ChemDraw Document Formats; Adobe Acrobat, HTML, Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.

ACD/IntelliXtract (LC–MS software for automatic molecular weight determination) (ACD/Labs): ACD/IntelliXtract first extracts chromatographic peaks, and then mimics the approach an expert mass spectroscopist would use for interpretation of the spectrum associated with each peak. Ion adducts, multimers, 12C/13C ratios, isotopes, neutral losses, and fragment ions are considered, providing accurate molecular ion identification.

This is a standalone software product, compatible with all major instrument models and makes. Applications to small molecule LC–MS analysis, including identification of unknown compounds (i.e., impurity analysis, degradent analysis, metabolism, and patent protection), high-throughput screening (i.e., compound verification or purity analysis); Current LC–MS software performs chromatographic peak extraction, but does not indicate which single ion peaks are associated with each other.

Emil W. Ciurczak is chief technical officer at Cadrai Technology Group (Bel Air, MD). He can be reached via e-mail at: emil@ciurczak.com