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Dolomite Successfully Tests Miniaturisation of Gas Chromatography Equipment for Environmental Testing

Published on February 13, 2010 at 6:27 PM

Dolomite, in collaboration with the UK's National Centre for Atmospheric Science, has successfully tested the miniaturisation of gas chromatography equipment for environmental testing. The glass Gas Chromatography Chip has a 300 µm thick layer and is fabricated with isotropic channels, which effectively replace the capillary and spindle structure which is characteristic of standard GC columns. This microfluidic miniaturisation enables the production of portable, robust and low power GC systems suitable for environmental applications such as atmospheric monitoring.

The chip design includes an injection zone, which allows activated carbon particles to be loaded and held, forming a sample absorption column. Closely packed within a 100 x 100 mm microfluidic chip, the 7.5 m and 1.4 m long channels have an internal diameter of 320 µm to ensure efficient heat transfer. With a circular cross section, a uniform coating can be evenly applied to the inside surface of the channel, effectively mimicking the stationary phase, to aid separation. The results have been published in Journal of Chromatography A.

Professor Alastair Lewis, of the National Centre for Atmospheric Science at the University of York, commented, "We are very pleased with the progress of our development and the excellent support we have received from Dolomite, which helped us to make significant progress. Our research has shown that microfluidics is an enabling technology for the next generation of environmental testing equipment. It provides in-situ environmental monitoring capabilities with the possibility of a more rapid response to adverse changes in air quality."

For further information on the complete range of microfluidic products available from Dolomite, including chips, connectors/interconnects, pumps, valves and flow sensors, please visit www.dolomite-microfluidics.com.

Dolomite is a global leader in the design and manufacture of microfluidics devices. With offices in the UK, US and Japan and distributors throughout the rest of the world, its clients range from universities developing leading-edge analytical equipment, to manufacturers of chemical, life sciences and clinical diagnostics systems.

Excellent microfabrication facilities that include cleanrooms, precision glass processing facilities and applications laboratories were established with £2m in funding from the UK Department of Trade and Industry's Micro and Nano Technology (MNT) Manufacturing Initiative. Dolomite’s expertise includes top quality engineering and scientific staff with strong backgrounds across the broad range of disciplines required for success in bringing microfluidics applications to the market, including chemistry, biotechnology, control system development, electronics, physics and instrument design and supply.

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