News

Analyser helps to educate tomorrow’s scientists

An AQ1 discrete analyser from SEAL Analytical is being used in Lake Superior State University’s (USA) Environmental Analysis Laboratory (EAL) to analyse local, regional and national water quality samples. In addition, however, the advanced device is enabling students to gain hands-on experience with automated nutrient testing for many common environmental parameters, with detection limits in parts per billion.

Over the summer, the lab supported twelve student-faculty research projects including Professor Derek Wright’s monitoring of the Ashmun Creek and Munuscong watersheds, and laboratory manager Ben Southwell’s work to characterise waters at risk from harmful cyanobacteria blooms.

The lab also conducts contract work for public and private clients and offers paid internships to students looking for experience.

The AQ1, which can used unattended, is designed to perform automated colorimetric tests on multiple samples in discrete reaction vessels.  It is supplied with standard methods to USEPA, ASTM, ISO and other internationally recognised standards for the analysis of parameters including alkalinity, ammonia, chloride, cyanides, nitrate/nitrite, nitrite, phenolics, ortho phosphate, total phosphorus, silicate, sulfate and total Kjeldahl nitrogen.

The device offers interchangeable 60 or 78 position sample trays and easy-to-use software, and users can schedule tests (up to 60 per hour) and specify QC types, limits and corrective actions following a QC failure. It is also possible to add further samples after a test run has begun. Highly accurate analysis is achieved with 100% optical glass no-flow cuvettes and the maximum consumption of combined reagents and sample is 500 – 600 µL per test. Reaction times are user programmable from seconds to minutes. Once the absorbance is read, the cuvette is thoroughly cleaned, eliminating any carryover or cross-contamination.

Guide to monitoring industrial emissions now available

FLIR Systems has written a new informative guide: `Top Tips : How to get the most from Optical Gas Imaging (OGI)’ in light of legislative changes governing how organisations should monitor their industrial emissions.

One of the most significant advances in infrared thermographic cameras has been the introduction of Optical Gas Imaging. OGI cameras use spectral wavelength filtering and sterling cooler cold filtering technology to visualise the Infrared absorption of VOC/Hydrocarbon ; SF6 ; Refrigerant, Carbon Monoxide and other gases whose spectral absorption matches the response of the camera. By using OGI technology – industry is now able to incorporate a ‘Smart LDAR’ program that safely and efficiently visualise gas leaks.

OGI has allowed industry to reduce emissions thereby enabling operator owners to conform to strengthening environmental emission regulations, save money as part of a much more efficient process, but most importantly improve the safety of their assets and their workers.

The new FLIR ‘Top Tips’ guide offers advice on understanding your application needs; Taking account of environmental conditions; Learning what OGI can do for you; How to use OGI as part of a LDAR process; Improving safety; Complying with incoming legislation; How to work with Permits and Justification for OGI based on return on investment.

For a copy of the new top tips guide please visit: www.flirmedia.com/MMC/THG/Brochures/T820590/T820590_EN.pdf or contact FLIR Systems at gasimaging@flir.com

 

 

Ametek acquires Switzerland-based test and measurement manufacturer

AMETEK has acquired the Teseq Group, a manufacturer of test and measurement instrumentation for electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) testing, for CHF 83 million ($92 million).

The company, which is headquartered in Luterbach, Switzerland, manufactures a broad line of conducted and radiated EMC compliance testing systems and RF amplifiers for a wide range of industries, including aerospace, automotive, consumer electronics, medical equipment, telecommunications and transportation.

“Teseq is an excellent addition to our electrical test and measurement business,” commented Frank S. Hermance, AMETEK chairman and chief executive officer. 

“Teseq’s products and markets are complementary with our EM Test business, which we acquired in 2011. Its addition to that business provides us with opportunities for accelerating product innovation and market expansion worldwide,”. Hermance added.

 

Mini spectrometer selected as finalist for Prism Award

Ocean Optics’ IDRaman mini handheld Raman spectrometer has been selected as a finalist for the Prism Awards for Photonics Innovation. The prestigious awards, which are co-sponsored by the trade organisation SPIE and the technology media company Photonics Media, will be awarded at the 2014 Photonics West trade show in February.

The IDRaman mini is a finalist in the Defense and Security category of the Prism Awards and is distinguished as a small-footprint, high accuracy instrument ideal for applications ranging from first responders identifying explosives to quality control specialists involved in sample authentication. The device measures just 9.1 x 7.1 x 3.8cm.

The spectrometer uses a sampling technique called Raster Orbital Scanning (ROS) where a tightly focused laser beam is moved or rastered across the sample in an orbital pattern. This allows an area about 10 times larger than the laser focus spot to be sampled, encountering more Raman active compounds. Because more Raman-active compounds are sampled, the resulting data incorporates a much higher sensitivity without sacrificing resolution. The increased accuracy in the Raman data further provides high confidence when identifying compounds through library matching.

Stemmer Imaging opens office in Ireland

Stemmer Imaging opened its new office in County Clare, Ireland, today (2nd January 2014).

Mark Williamson, director – corporate market development at Stemmer Imaging, said: “STEMMER IMAGING is Europe’s largest independent supplier of vision technology and services to industrial and scientific OEMs, system Integrators and reseller markets, and we recognise the importance of providing local support and expertise for our customers. Ireland has been an increasingly important market area for us so we felt that now was the right time to establish a dedicated office there.”

The company is now directly represented in five geographic territories across Europe based in the UK, France, Switzerland and The Netherlands, as well as the head office in Germany.

Sensors industry optimistic following 4% growth in 2013

In the most recent economic poll of its 480 members, the AMA Association for Sensors and Measurement found that the enterprises – mostly SMEs – had a good run in the first two quarters and were able to maintain a turnover of 1% in the third quarter (compared to the previous quarter).

A good indicator for the positive mood in the sensor industry is the growth in orders incoming of approximately 2.8% compared to the previous quarter.

“With such a quarterly result and an outlook for an annual total growth of 4%, we can consider this year’s end result as ‘good’,” says Thomas Simmons, AMA’s executive director.

If we compare the increase in orders incoming for sensors and measurement with the current statistics of the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology for the German industry of 1.6% in the third quarter, we can ascertain that the sensor and measuring industry, as the key branch for technical advance, is clearly ahead.

“The positive development in orders incoming and the cumulative turnover of plus 4% for 2013, allow our member enterprises to start the new business year with optimism,” says Simmons, commenting on the sensor industry’s outlook for the year 2014.

Latest Foundation Fieldbus interoperability test kit launched

The Fieldbus Foundation has announced the release of the Foundation Fieldbus H1 Interoperability Test Kit (ITK) 6.1.1. The H1 ITK is said to be an advanced testing solution benefitting both developers and end users of FOUNDATION fieldbus H1 devices.

The latest version reflects the increased focus of the Fieldbus Foundation on usability. The Fieldbus Foundation has already made enhancements to its Interoperability Test Kit (ITK) that make it easier for end users to replace ‘Like for Like’ devices. In other words, the procedure for replacing a device with a newer revision level of the same make and model of device is automated to allow the configuration in an existing field instrument to be restored in a newer version of that instrument without manual intervention.

The H1 ITK consists of a test engine, communication stack and function block interface card. An excellent tool for troubleshooting and debugging Foundation fieldbus instruments, it includes all hardware and software required to ensure complete device interoperability. By using the H1 ITK, instrument manufacturers can thoroughly test their devices prior to submitting their product for official registration with the Fieldbus Foundation. By ensuring conformance with the FOUNDATION fieldbus specification, developers are able to deliver robust products and enhancements to their users.

The H1 ITK 6.1.1 is available immediately to Fieldbus Foundation members holding active maintenance agreements and for new purchases.

 

City Technology addresses oil and gas industry professionals at SIPPE

Wilson Tan, business leader of City Technology in APAC, addressed an audience of oil and gas industry professionals at this year’s SIPPE, held in the Shanghai New International Expo Center.

One of the key markets for the company is the global oil and gas industry. In APAC, this market is seeing significant growth because of increasing demand for energy and tighter health and safety regulations.

The theme of the presentation was the contribution new generation gas sensors can make in achieving worker safety. Topics discussed included recent advances in H2S detection and flammable gas sensing along with the importance of reliability and repeatability in gas sensors. City sensors are critical components in gas detectors, offering users the highest level of safety and reliability.

There was significant interest in the topic from the audience, particularly amongst oil and gas equipment integrators. 

Tan commented: “SIPPE is an important event in the oil and gas industry. As a global leader in gas sensing technology we want to ensure people understand the importance of selecting the most robust solution for this challenging application. As the Chinese government is about to publish stricter standards regarding flammable gas detection, the timing of the presentation was ideal.”

 

Condition monitoring equipment helps protect the first UAE nuclear power station

Sensonics has announced that it is the only British instrumentation manufacturing company involved in the first nuclear power station to be built in the United Arab Emirates.  

The contract, for over 1,500 protection channels, is for the supply of the highly successful G3 machinery protection system, monitoring the vibration, thrust and speed of the BOP equipment on all four units at the Barakah Power Plant in the UAE.

This major overseas contract is another example of Sensonics’ commitment to developing the most innovative and effective solutions for vibration, position and speed instrumentation for critical machine condition monitoring applications in power generation, petrochemical, paper production and process manufacturing industries around the world.     

 

Inductance-to-Digital Converter provides a ‘revolution in sensing’

Mouser Electronics is now stocking what it claims is the world’s first Inductance-to-Digital Converter from Texas Instruments. This is a contact-less, short-range sensing technology that provides a revolution in sensing, states the company.

The LDC1000 Inductance-to-Digital Converter provides a sensing technology that enables low-cost, high-resolution sensing of conductive targets in the presence of dust, dirt, oil, and moisture, making it extremely reliable in hostile environments. Using a coil which can be created on a PCB as a sensing element, the device enables ultra-low cost system solutions.

Inductive sensing technology enables precise measurement of linear/angular position, displacement, motion, compression, vibration, metal composition, ideal for applications in markets such as automotive, consumer, computer, industrial, medical, and communications.

The device offers the benefits of inductive sensing in a low-power, small-footprint solution.