Series 2 ULTRA™: Multi-function TD autosampler
Uncompromised TD analytical performance
Series 2 ULTRA automates UNITY 2 without compromising its peerless analytical performance. The combined system provides a universal TD platform for up to 100 3.5-inch or 4.5-inch tubes offering simultaneous analysis of volatiles & semivolatiles, quantitative recovery of high boilers (including n-C40) and the option of low flow path temperatures for compatibility with labile analytes such as mercaptans. Systems offer splitless capillary operation for trace level work and single or double split methods for high concentration samples such as stack emissions and residual solvent in materials.
Series 2 ULTRA-UNITY systems maintain all the analytical advantages of UNITY 2 and offer the following additional benefits relating to the automatic processing of TD sample tubes.
100-Tube automation optimizes productivity
ULTRA 2 maximises the throughput and revenue generation potential of your TD-GC(MS) system. It offers capacity for up to 100 sample tubes together with overlap mode. Sample overlap means that desorption of a subsequent tube can begin while GC(MS) analysis of a previous sample continues – thus minimizing analytical cycle times.
With typical GC(MS) cycle times of 40 minutes, your series 2 ULTRA-UNITY TD-GC(MS) system offers unattended processing of 100 tubes over a standard 60-hour weekend; this represents significant revenue potential with minimal labour costs.
Patented tube sealing mechanism
TubeTAG reading/writing for enhanced tube traceability
Series 2 ULTRA-UNITY systems are fully compliant with all TD standard methods and feature the mandated ambient temperature/no-flow leak test of UNITY (2) integrated seamlessly with the TD-GC(MS) sequence. Data processing remains synchronized with the analytical process at all times. Any tubes which fail the leak test are returned intact to the sample tray awaiting operator intervention. After a tube leak test failure, ULTRA 2 records this in the sequence reporter and proceeds to load and leak test the next sample in the sequence.
SecureTD-Q: Quantitative sample re-collection
Every series 2 ULTRA-UNITY system features manual re-collection of the total split flow (i.e. the split during both tube and trap desorption) as standard. This allows repeat analysis of critical samples and simplifies method validation as per standard methods such as ASTM D6196.
ULTRA 2 also offers automated sample re-collection options using either a single ULTRA autosampler (see ULTRA 50:50 system) or double ULTRA configuration (see AutoSecure TD system).
Series 2 ULTRA 50:50 systems offer automated and quantitative re-collection of the trap desorption split flow for 50 or 100 tubes.
Series 2 AutoSecure TD™ systems, incorporating two ULTRA 2 autosamplers, offer quantitative re-collection of the total split flow (i.e. the split flow during both tube and trap desorption) for all 100 tubes.
Automated re-collection now enhanced with TubeTAG
Use of series 2 ULTRA TubeTAG read/write capability during automated desorption/re-collection, greatly enhances the automation and traceability of SecureTD-Q. Automated desorption/re-collection systems incorporating TubeTAG log the unique ID numbers of original sample tubes and of the corresponding re-collection tubes, both on the respective individual tube tags and in the automation sequence. Subsequent interrogation of an individual tube tag can be used to confirm if that tube is either:
• A sample tube, which has now been desorbed, with the sample re-collected on tube ID# Mi 0XXXXX, or
• A tube that now contains the re-collected sample originally desorbed from tube ID# Mi 0YYYYY
UltrA 2 options and accessories
The following options and accessories are available for ULTRA 2:
Integrated TubeTAG read/write capability
TubeTAG read/write capability is available for any series 2 ULTRA (see above) and can be factory configured or field installed. It is compatible with all other ULTRA 2 options and accessories.
The ULTRA 2 can be factory configured with a “50:50” option for automated sample re-collection using a single TD autosampler. The resulting series 2 ULTRA 50:50 package is a patented, cost effective, space saving solution for automatic thermal desorption and re-collection of up to 100 tubes.
A standard series 2 ULTRA-UNITY offers manual re-collection of individual samples (see above). Addition of a 50:50 option to the ULTRA 2 complements this facility by offering automatic re-collection of trap desorption (outlet) split flow. This means that the outlet split flow from up to 50 samples can be recollected onto 50 fresh (conditioned) sorbent tubes. Alternatively, the outlet split flow from up to 100 samples can be re-collected back onto the original sorbent tubes.
The 50:50 option also facilitates automatic dry purging of sorbent tubes in the sampling direction prior to thermal desorption, as recommended in standard methods such as US EPA TO-17. All other features are the same as on standard series 2 ULTRA-UNITY systems.
For high throughput laboratories with a focus on data quality, series 2 ULTRA 50:50 offers cost-effective automatic re-collection for any single (outlet) split method. Sample and re-collection tubes are arranged in colour-coded trays for operator convenience and a clear user interface displays sequence status and the post run sequence report.
Error-free operation of series 2 ULTRA 50:50 is further enhanced by using the TubeTAG read/write option to link the identity of each desorbed tube to that used for sample re-collection (see above).
Manual or automated flow control
Series 2 ULTRA systems usually harness the manual or electronic mass flow control (MFC) incorporated into the attached series 2 UNITY TD for control of both desorption and split gas flows. For added versatility series 2 ULTRA 50:50 units also offer the option of 1 or 2 integrated electronic mass flow controllers for special applications. These provide versatile electronic control of both split and desorption flows during an automated sequence with multiple TD methods.
Series 1 UNITY desorbers can also be upgraded with a series 2 ULTRA 50:50 configured with one or two integrated MFCs. Configuring a series 1 UNITY with a series 2 ULTRA 50:50 incorporating MFCs, brings both tube automation and enhanced electronic mass flow control of split and/or desorption flows to the original UNITY TD platform.
Internal Standard/Dry Purge (ISDP) option
An ULTRA 2 factory configured with an ISDP option, incorporates all the features of the ULTRA 2 autosampler but with the added benefit of an inbuilt internal standard (IS) addition and automatic tube dry purging capability. When using an ULTRA 2/ISDP system, a precise aliquot of gaseous internal standard is transferred from a gas valve loop to the sampling end of a sorbent tube immediately after the leak test and before tube desorption. Addition of IS aids analytical quality assurance and is recommended in standard TD methods. Typical compounds used as internal standards include toluene-d8 and bromofluorobenzene (BFB).
Gas-phase IS can be added either to sampled or blank tubes. When standard is added to the sampling end of blank tubes, they are not desorbed but replaced in the ULTRA 2 tube tray ready for field monitoring. In this case the internal standard provides a quality check on every aspect of the monitoring process – tube storage, transport, sampling, and analysis.
Dry purging of tubes, before analytical desorption, is also facilitated using ISDP. Tube dry purging is carried out in the sampling direction, with or without internal standard addition.
ULTRA 2 with 50:50 and ISDP
Series 2 ULTRAs may be factory configured with internal standard addition,
50:50 automated re-collection plus dry purge capability, all on the same system.
This comprehensive ULTRA 2 configuration is further enhanced by the addition of TubeTAG read/write capability for automatic logging and tracking of sample tubes, re-collection tubes and the history of each tube.
AutoSecure TD System: The ultimate in TD automation
Unrestricted upgrade path: Plug-and-play TD
All series 2 ULTRA configurations may be readily connected and disconnected to any series 1 or 2 UNITY TD platform. ULTRA 2 can also be connected to UNITY (2) in parallel with Air Server technology for automated on-line air monitoring/canister analysis. In addition to this, series 2 AutoSecure TD systems offer a unique and cost-effective route to increasing productivity: With the addition of a second UNITY 2, an AutoSecure TD system can be readily transformed into two standard series 2 ULTRA-UNITY systems. This can be used, for example, to increase sample throughput when demand for TD-GC(MS) analysis is especially high.