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Raman on the agenda at Pittcon

10 Mar 2015

Multitude of new optical spectroscopy equipment on show at the annual analytical science convention.

Two-time Prism Award winner WITec is among a number of companies launching new photonics-based analytical equipment at the annual Pittcon exhibition taking place this week in New Orleans.

The company, headquartered in Ulm, Germany, introduced its “apyron” Raman imaging system at the event. Said to be both highly sophisticated and user friendly, the confocal microscope is fully automated – with features including automatic adjustment of all associated spectrometer and microscope components following laser wavelength selection.

WITec’s managing director of research and development, Olaf Hollricher, said: “Raman newcomers, industry labs with measurement routines and time-critical analyses, as well as scientists with challenging experiments can explore Raman imaging beyond the established frontiers of their fields.”

The company won a Prism Award at the recent Photonics West event for a different and much more complex piece of kit – the “RISE” microscope that combines Raman imaging with scanning electron microscopy. And back in 2011, its “TrueSurface” microscope scooped another Prism gong.

WITec is not the only company showing off award-winning Raman equipment in New Orleans this week. UK-based metrology giant Renishaw is exhibiting its confocal microscope based on the light-scattering technique, which won the company a Queen's Award for Enterprise last year.

The flexible “inVia” system is described as the ultimate research-grade Raman microscope, thanks to an efficient optical design that is able to generate spectra from very small samples.

Like WITec’s apyron, it is automated, and is also compatible with a wide range of laser sources, with more than 20 different excitation wavelengths available, down to 229 nm in the deep-ultraviolet.

“inVia normally accommodates two or three lasers as standard, but Renishaw can configure your inVia to use as many lasers as you need,” states the firm.

Democratizing spectrometry
Aside from the Raman kit, Pittcon launches include a new handheld absorption spectrometer from US-based SpectroClick that operates across visible wavelengths.

The company, based at the “EnterpriseWorks” technology hub within the University of Illlinois at Urbana-Champaign, says that its spectrometers are unique in that they intelligently trade dynamic range and wavelength resolution without moving parts.

Company president Alex Scheeline said in the company’s show release: “The AAH 200a will democratize spectrometry, making real-time analysis available for everyone, not just experts with expensive instruments.”

Elsewhere at the New Orleans show, California-based Spectrum Scientific introduced a new ultraviolet-visible spectrometer featuring the firm’s own aberration-corrected concave holographic grating.

In tandem with an S11151 CCD sensor from Hamamatsu Photonics, it is said to deliver an efficient optical design with high throughput and a dynamic range of 7200 to 1 across the 190-850 nm wavelength range.

“This spectrometer will be ideal for OEM customers in need of a compact UV spectrometer to design an instrument around or an end-user customer with application-specific needs,” claims the company.

Among the other major players at the exhibition, PerkinElmer showed off some innovative near-infrared technology developed by recent acquisition Perten Instruments

Bought from the Spanish investment group Valedo in late 2014, Perten specializes in analytical equipment used in the food industry – and for characterizing different types of grain and flour in particular.

The new diode-array DA7250 analyzer is said to be able to determine levels of moisture, protein, fat and other constituent parts of grains and liquid samples within just six seconds.

PerkinElmer is also launching two new FT-IR microscope systems and a benchtop UV-visible spectrometer at the event, for a variety of industrial and life sciences applications.

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