• Advanced peristaltic pump for atomic spectroscopy

Pumps / Valves

Advanced peristaltic pump for atomic spectroscopy

Feb 08 2024

Since the pioneering work of German scientists Robert Bunsen and Gustav Kirchhoff in the 19th century, atomic spectroscopy has evolved into a widely adopted analytical method used worldwide for routine applications. In atomic spectroscopy, particularly in the field of inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) and inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrometry (ICP-OES), multielement analysis of liquids is crucial. Both methods utilise the same inductively coupled plasma source, acting as either an emission or ion source for mass spectrometry.

For the efficient transport of liquid samples, peristaltic pumps have become essential, overcoming changes in composition and viscosity that can lead to matrix effects. These pumps operate by compressing and relaxing a trapped liquid volume within an elastic tubing, pressed against a curved pressure plate in the pumping head. The entrapped liquid is continuously transported toward the nebuliser through the rotation of the roller head, ensuring that the sample remains in contact only with the metal-free tubing. This allows for the transport of samples over extended distances to the ICP spectrometer.

The newly introduced ‘Easy Click’ peristaltic pump from Spetec GmbH represents a significant advancement in this technology. Utilising the ‘easy click’ principle, the pressure of the plate is pre-adjusted by a spring, eliminating the need for manual optimisation and enabling an immediate start to the analysis sequence. This innovative feature simplifies the operation and expedites the workflow.

In a comprehensive study conducted by the Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung (BAM) in Berlin, Germany, Spetec tested two different peristaltic pumps alongside the ‘Easy Click’ pump on a simultaneously measuring ICP-OES instrument. The investigation revealed that all analytical figures of merit, including limits of detection (LOD) and signal stability, for a variety of elements did not significantly differ among the tested pumps. The ‘Easy Click’ pump demonstrated LODs in the lower µg/L range, achieving standard deviations of less than 1% for eight elements and less than 2% for the remaining two.

In summary, the "Easy Click" peristaltic pump from Spetec not only competes with reference pumps in terms of analytical performance but also stands out for its convenient and rapid tubing changes without the need for further adjustment.

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