Automated catalytic sample combustion for high-capacity processing

2 February 2023

The Hidex 600 OX Sample Oxidizer can combust up to six samples in series with improved user safety

Hidex’s automated 600 OX Sample Oxidizer achieves higher throughput compared to manual single-sample oxidizers by automating the catalytic combustion process using Beckhoff’s industry-standard Programmable Logic Controllers (PLC). This allows six samples to be combusted in series for the collection of 14C and 3H, with up to 2 grams per sample, which are automatically collected, sealed, and aspirated into scintillation vials for liquid scintillation counting.

As one batch of six samples is being combusted, treatment preparation of another batch of six, such as weight measurement or tissue and plant slicing, can be prepared by the operator as the 600 OX does not require further operator attention, unlike older models of oxidizers that demand manual input, increasing total sample throughput.

Automated gas line leak test

With reduced user handling and loading of samples because of greater automation, the 600 OX is significantly safer to operate. Besides sample combustion, critical safety checks are automated as well, such as a gas line leak test that is performed before each and every combustion. The leak test uses a mass-flow meter-based measurement and compares oxygen input and output flow at the end of the gas line. This regulated flow also improves the combustion of high carbon content and rapidly burning samples that require extra oxygen.

Automating oxidizer hot zone safety

With combustion temperatures reaching 900°C, both the timing of the cooling airflow that cools the quartz ladles holding the sample boats and the ladle cover’s safety interlock can be automated with times specified by the user. This ensures operator safety when interacting with the 600 OX’s hot zones. Samples are also oxidized in a vented compartment that extracts the fumes, rather than releasing them into the laboratory environment as older models of oxidizers do.

Find out more

You can learn more about the Hidex 600 OX Sample Oxidizer by clicking the button below to request a guided demonstration with a product specialist.


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