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Sample records for automated sample transfer

  1. An automated method of sample preparation of biofluids using pierceable caps to eliminate the uncapping of the sample tubes during sample transfer.

    PubMed

    Teitz, D S; Khan, S; Powell, M L; Jemal, M

    2000-09-11

    Biological samples are normally collected and stored frozen in capped tubes until analysis. To obtain aliquots of biological samples for analysis, the sample tubes have to be thawed, uncapped, samples removed and then recapped for further storage. In this paper, we report an automated method of sample transfer devised to eliminate the uncapping and recapping process. This sampling method was incorporated into an automated liquid-liquid extraction procedure of plasma samples. Using a robotic system, the plasma samples were transferred directly from pierceable capped tubes into microtubes contained in a 96-position block. The aliquoted samples were extracted with methyl-tert-butyl ether in the same microtubes. The supernatant organic layers were transferred to a 96-well collection plate and evaporated to dryness. The dried extracts were reconstituted and injected from the same plate for analysis by liquid chromatography with tandem mass spectrometry.

  2. Computerized Analytical Data Management System and Automated Analytical Sample Transfer System at the COGEMA Reprocessing Plants in La Hague

    SciTech Connect

    Flament, T.; Goasmat, F.; Poilane, F.

    2002-02-25

    Managing the operation of large commercial spent nuclear fuel reprocessing plants, such as UP3 and UP2-800 in La Hague, France, requires an extensive analytical program and the shortest possible analysis response times. COGEMA, together with its engineering subsidiary SGN, decided to build high-performance laboratories to support operations in its plants. These laboratories feature automated equipment, safe environments for operators, and short response times, all in centralized installations. Implementation of a computerized analytical data management system and a fully automated pneumatic system for the transfer of radioactive samples was a key factor contributing to the successful operation of the laboratories and plants.

  3. A new automated sample transfer system for instrumental neutron activation analysis.

    PubMed

    Ismail, S S

    2010-01-01

    A fully automated and fast pneumatic transport system for short-time activation analysis was recently developed. It is suitable for small nuclear research reactors or laboratories that are using neutron generators and other neutron sources. It is equipped with a programmable logic controller, software package, and 12 devices to facilitate optimal analytical procedures. 550 ms were only necessary to transfer the irradiated capsule (diameter: 15 mm, length: 50 mm, weight: 4 gram) to the counting chamber at a distance of 20 meters using pressurized air (4 bars) as a transport gas.

  4. A New Automated Sample Transfer System for Instrumental Neutron Activation Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Ismail, S. S.

    2010-01-01

    A fully automated and fast pneumatic transport system for short-time activation analysis was recently developed. It is suitable for small nuclear research reactors or laboratories that are using neutron generators and other neutron sources. It is equipped with a programmable logic controller, software package, and 12 devices to facilitate optimal analytical procedures. 550 ms were only necessary to transfer the irradiated capsule (diameter: 15 mm, length: 50 mm, weight: 4 gram) to the counting chamber at a distance of 20 meters using pressurized air (4 bars) as a transport gas. PMID:20369063

  5. AUTOMATING GROUNDWATER SAMPLING AT HANFORD

    SciTech Connect

    CONNELL CW; HILDEBRAND RD; CONLEY SF; CUNNINGHAM DE

    2009-01-16

    Until this past October, Fluor Hanford managed Hanford's integrated groundwater program for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). With the new contract awards at the Site, however, the CH2M HILL Plateau Remediation Company (CHPRC) has assumed responsibility for the groundwater-monitoring programs at the 586-square-mile reservation in southeastern Washington State. These programs are regulated by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) and the Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA). The purpose of monitoring is to track existing groundwater contamination from past practices, as well as other potential contamination that might originate from RCRA treatment, storage, and disposal (TSD) facilities. An integral part of the groundwater-monitoring program involves taking samples of the groundwater and measuring the water levels in wells scattered across the site. More than 1,200 wells are sampled each year. Historically, field personnel or 'samplers' have been issued pre-printed forms that have information about the well(s) for a particular sampling evolution. This information is taken from the Hanford Well Information System (HWIS) and the Hanford Environmental Information System (HEIS)--official electronic databases. The samplers used these hardcopy forms to document the groundwater samples and well water-levels. After recording the entries in the field, the samplers turned the forms in at the end of the day and the collected information was posted onto a spreadsheet that was then printed and included in a log book. The log book was then used to make manual entries of the new information into the software application(s) for the HEIS and HWIS databases. This is a pilot project for automating this tedious process by providing an electronic tool for automating water-level measurements and groundwater field-sampling activities. The automation will eliminate the manual forms and associated data entry, improve the accuracy of the

  6. Saturn facility oil transfer automation system

    SciTech Connect

    Joseph, Nathan R.; Thomas, Rayburn Dean; Lewis, Barbara Ann; Malagon, Hector M.

    2014-02-01

    The Saturn accelerator, owned by Sandia National Laboratories, has been in operation since the early 1980s and still has many of the original systems. A critical legacy system is the oil transfer system which transfers 250,000 gallons of transformer oil from outside storage tanks to the Saturn facility. The oil transfer system was iden- ti ed for upgrade to current technology standards. Using the existing valves, pumps, and relay controls, the system was automated using the National Instruments cRIO FGPA platform. Engineered safety practices, including a failure mode e ects analysis, were used to develop error handling requirements. The uniqueness of the Saturn Oil Automated Transfer System (SOATS) is in the graphical user interface. The SOATS uses an HTML interface to communicate to the cRIO, creating a platform independent control system. The SOATS was commissioned in April 2013.

  7. Automated sample preparation for CE-SDS.

    PubMed

    Le, M Eleanor; Vizel, Alona; Hutterer, Katariina M

    2013-05-01

    Traditionally, CE with SDS (CE-SDS) places many restrictions on sample composition. Requirements include low salt content, known initial sample concentration, and a narrow window of final sample concentration. As these restrictions require buffer exchange for many sample types, sample preparation is often tedious and yields poor sample recoveries. To improve capacity and streamline sample preparation, an automated robotic platform was developed using the PhyNexus Micro-Extractor Automated Instrument (MEA) for both the reduced and nonreduced CE-SDS assays. This automated sample preparation normalizes sample concentration, removes salts and other contaminants, and adds the required CE-SDS reagents, essentially eliminating manual steps during sample preparation. Fc-fusion proteins and monoclonal antibodies were used in this work to demonstrate benefits of this approach when compared to the manual method. With optimized conditions, this application has demonstrated decreased analyst "hands on" time and reduced total assay time. Sample recovery greater than 90% can be achieved, regardless of initial composition and concentration of analyte.

  8. Automated DNA extraction for large numbers of plant samples.

    PubMed

    Mehle, Nataša; Nikolić, Petra; Rupar, Matevž; Boben, Jana; Ravnikar, Maja; Dermastia, Marina

    2013-01-01

    The method described here is a rapid, total DNA extraction procedure applicable to a large number of plant samples requiring pathogen detection. The procedure combines a simple and quick homogenization step of crude extracts with DNA extraction based upon the binding of DNA to magnetic beads. DNA is purified in an automated process in which the magnetic beads are transferred through a series of washing buffers. The eluted DNA is suitable for efficient amplification in PCR reactions.

  9. Automated Sample Deoxygenation for Improved Luminescence Measurements.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1986-11-25

    fET-AY4 732 AUTOMATED SAMPLE DEOXYGENATION FOR IMPROVED LUMINESCENCE MEASUREMENTS U) EMORY UNIV RTLANTA GA DEPT OF CHEMISTRY M E ROLLIE ET AL 25 NOV... Deoxygenation for Improved Luminescence Measurements 12 PERSONAL AUTHOR(S) | ,Rollie, M.E.; Patonay, Gabor; and Warner, Isiah M. A .3a. TYPE OF REPORT...GROUP ISU*GRO P ,,,uminescence Spectroscopy; Fluorescence Analysis,* Room *f Temperature Phosphorescence; Deoxygenation ; Quenching ISTRACT (Continue on

  10. Precise and automated microfluidic sample preparation.

    SciTech Connect

    Crocker, Robert W.; Patel, Kamlesh D.; Mosier, Bruce P.; Harnett, Cindy K.

    2004-07-01

    Autonomous bio-chemical agent detectors require sample preparation involving multiplex fluid control. We have developed a portable microfluidic pump array for metering sub-microliter volumes at flowrates of 1-100 {micro}L/min. Each pump is composed of an electrokinetic (EK) pump and high-voltage power supply with 15-Hz feedback from flow sensors. The combination of high pump fluid impedance and active control results in precise fluid metering with nanoliter accuracy. Automated sample preparation will be demonstrated by labeling proteins with fluorescamine and subsequent injection to a capillary gel electrophoresis (CGE) chip.

  11. SALTSTONE PROCESSING FACILITY TRANSFER SAMPLE

    SciTech Connect

    Cozzi, A.; Reigel, M.

    2010-08-04

    On May 19, 2010, the Saltstone Production Facility inadvertently transferred 1800 gallons of untreated waste from the salt feed tank to Vault 4. During shut down, approximately 70 gallons of the material was left in the Saltstone hopper. A sample of the slurry in the hopper was sent to Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL) to analyze the density, pH and the eight Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) metals. The sample was hazardous for chromium, mercury and pH. The sample received from the Saltstone hopper was analyzed visually while obtaining sample aliquots and while the sample was allowed to settle. It was observed that the sample contains solids that settle in approximately 20 minutes (Figure 3-1). There is a floating layer on top of the supernate during settling and disperses when the sample is agitated (Figure 3-2). The untreated waste inadvertently transferred from the SFT to Vault 4 was toxic for chromium and mercury. In addition, the pH of the sample is at the regulatory limit. Visually inspecting the sample indicates solids present in the sample.

  12. SMART Plan. Statewide Management of Automated Record Transfer: A Plan To Automate and Transfer Student Records Statewide.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nevada State Dept. of Education, Carson City. Planning, Research and Evaluation Branch.

    As of 1993, Nevada had no systems for statewide automation and transfer of student records. This guide book presents findings of a collaborative study, conducted by the Nevada Department of Education and local school districts, that explored the need for and feasibility of developing a statewide system for automating and transferring student…

  13. Digital microfluidic hub for automated nucleic acid sample preparation.

    SciTech Connect

    He, Jim; Bartsch, Michael S.; Patel, Kamlesh D.; Kittlaus, Eric A.; Remillared, Erin M.; Pezzola, Genevieve L.; Renzi, Ronald F.; Kim, Hanyoup

    2010-07-01

    We have designed, fabricated, and characterized a digital microfluidic (DMF) platform to function as a central hub for interfacing multiple lab-on-a-chip sample processing modules towards automating the preparation of clinically-derived DNA samples for ultrahigh throughput sequencing (UHTS). The platform enables plug-and-play installation of a two-plate DMF device with consistent spacing, offers flexible connectivity for transferring samples between modules, and uses an intuitive programmable interface to control droplet/electrode actuations. Additionally, the hub platform uses transparent indium-tin oxide (ITO) electrodes to allow complete top and bottom optical access to the droplets on the DMF array, providing additional flexibility for various detection schemes.

  14. Automated PCR setup for forensic casework samples using the Normalization Wizard and PCR Setup robotic methods.

    PubMed

    Greenspoon, S A; Sykes, K L V; Ban, J D; Pollard, A; Baisden, M; Farr, M; Graham, N; Collins, B L; Green, M M; Christenson, C C

    2006-12-20

    Human genome, pharmaceutical and research laboratories have long enjoyed the application of robotics to performing repetitive laboratory tasks. However, the utilization of robotics in forensic laboratories for processing casework samples is relatively new and poses particular challenges. Since the quantity and quality (a mixture versus a single source sample, the level of degradation, the presence of PCR inhibitors) of the DNA contained within a casework sample is unknown, particular attention must be paid to procedural susceptibility to contamination, as well as DNA yield, especially as it pertains to samples with little biological material. The Virginia Department of Forensic Science (VDFS) has successfully automated forensic casework DNA extraction utilizing the DNA IQ(trade mark) System in conjunction with the Biomek 2000 Automation Workstation. Human DNA quantitation is also performed in a near complete automated fashion utilizing the AluQuant Human DNA Quantitation System and the Biomek 2000 Automation Workstation. Recently, the PCR setup for casework samples has been automated, employing the Biomek 2000 Automation Workstation and Normalization Wizard, Genetic Identity version, which utilizes the quantitation data, imported into the software, to create a customized automated method for DNA dilution, unique to that plate of DNA samples. The PCR Setup software method, used in conjunction with the Normalization Wizard method and written for the Biomek 2000, functions to mix the diluted DNA samples, transfer the PCR master mix, and transfer the diluted DNA samples to PCR amplification tubes. Once the process is complete, the DNA extracts, still on the deck of the robot in PCR amplification strip tubes, are transferred to pre-labeled 1.5 mL tubes for long-term storage using an automated method. The automation of these steps in the process of forensic DNA casework analysis has been accomplished by performing extensive optimization, validation and testing of the

  15. Automated collection and processing of environmental samples

    DOEpatents

    Troyer, Gary L.; McNeece, Susan G.; Brayton, Darryl D.; Panesar, Amardip K.

    1997-01-01

    For monitoring an environmental parameter such as the level of nuclear radiation, at distributed sites, bar coded sample collectors are deployed and their codes are read using a portable data entry unit that also records the time of deployment. The time and collector identity are cross referenced in memory in the portable unit. Similarly, when later recovering the collector for testing, the code is again read and the time of collection is stored as indexed to the sample collector, or to a further bar code, for example as provided on a container for the sample. The identity of the operator can also be encoded and stored. After deploying and/or recovering the sample collectors, the data is transmitted to a base processor. The samples are tested, preferably using a test unit coupled to the base processor, and again the time is recorded. The base processor computes the level of radiation at the site during exposure of the sample collector, using the detected radiation level of the sample, the delay between recovery and testing, the duration of exposure and the half life of the isotopes collected. In one embodiment, an identity code and a site code are optically read by an image grabber coupled to the portable data entry unit.

  16. Technology Transfer Opportunities: Automated Ground-Water Monitoring

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Smith, Kirk P.; Granato, Gregory E.

    1997-01-01

    Introduction A new automated ground-water monitoring system developed by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) measures and records values of selected water-quality properties and constituents using protocols approved for manual sampling. Prototypes using the automated process have demonstrated the ability to increase the quantity and quality of data collected and have shown the potential for reducing labor and material costs for ground-water quality data collection. Automation of water-quality monitoring systems in the field, in laboratories, and in industry have increased data density and utility while reducing operating costs. Uses for an automated ground-water monitoring system include, (but are not limited to) monitoring ground-water quality for research, monitoring known or potential contaminant sites, such as near landfills, underground storage tanks, or other facilities where potential contaminants are stored, and as an early warning system monitoring groundwater quality near public water-supply wells.

  17. Texture synthesis and transfer from multiple samples

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qi, Yue; Zhao, Qinping

    2003-09-01

    Texture Mapping plays a very important role in Computer Graphics. Texture Synthesis is one of the main methods to obtain textures, it makes use of sample textures to generate new textures. Texture Transfer is based on Texture Synthesis, it renders objects with textures taken from different objects. Currently, most of Texture Synthesis and Transfer methods use a single sample texture. A method for Texture Synthesis adn Transfer from multi samples was presented. For texture synthesis, the L-shaped neighborhood seaching approach was used. Users specify the proportion of each sample, the number of seed points, and these seed points are scattered randomly according to their samples in horizontal and vertical direction synchronously to synthesize textures. The synthesized textures are very good. For texture transfer, the luminance of the target image and the sample textures are analyzed. This procedure is from coarse to fine, and can produce a visually pleasing result.

  18. Rapid Automated Sample Preparation for Biological Assays

    SciTech Connect

    Shusteff, M

    2011-03-04

    Our technology utilizes acoustic, thermal, and electric fields to separate out contaminants such as debris or pollen from environmental samples, lyse open cells, and extract the DNA from the lysate. The objective of the project is to optimize the system described for a forensic sample, and demonstrate its performance for integration with downstream assay platforms (e.g. MIT-LL's ANDE). We intend to increase the quantity of DNA recovered from the sample beyond the current {approx}80% achieved using solid phase extraction methods. Task 1: Develop and test an acoustic filter for cell extraction. Task 2: Develop and test lysis chip. Task 3: Develop and test DNA extraction chip. All chips have been fabricated based on the designs laid out in last month's report.

  19. Automated Sample collection and Analysis unit

    SciTech Connect

    Latner, Norman; Sanderson, Colin G.; Negro, Vincent C.

    1999-03-31

    Autoramp is an atmospheric radionuclide collection and analysis unit designed for unattended operation. A large volume of air passes through one of 31 filter cartridges which is then moved from a sampling chamber and past a bar code reader, to a shielded enclosure. The collected dust-borne radionuclides are counted with a high resolution germanium gamma-ray detector. An analysis is made and the results are transmitted to a central station that can also remotely control the unit.

  20. Automated biowaste sampling system feces monitoring system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hunt, S. R.; Glanfield, E. J.

    1979-01-01

    The Feces Monitoring System (FMS) Program designed, fabricated, assembled and tested an engineering model waste collector system (WCS) to be used in support of life science and medical experiments related to Shuttle missions. The FMS design was patterned closely after the Shuttle WCS, including: interface provisions; mounting; configuration; and operating procedures. These similarities make it possible to eventually substitute an FMS for the Shuttle WCS of Orbiter. In addition, several advanced waste collection features, including the capability of real-time inertial fecal separation and fecal mass measurement and sampling were incorporated into the FMS design.

  1. Non-Contact Conductivity Measurement for Automated Sample Processing Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Beegle, Luther W.; Kirby, James P.

    2012-01-01

    A new method has been developed for monitoring and control of automated sample processing and preparation especially focusing on desalting of samples before analytical analysis (described in more detail in Automated Desalting Apparatus, (NPO-45428), NASA Tech Briefs, Vol. 34, No. 8 (August 2010), page 44). The use of non-contact conductivity probes, one at the inlet and one at the outlet of the solid phase sample preparation media, allows monitoring of the process, and acts as a trigger for the start of the next step in the sequence (see figure). At each step of the muti-step process, the system is flushed with low-conductivity water, which sets the system back to an overall low-conductivity state. This measurement then triggers the next stage of sample processing protocols, and greatly minimizes use of consumables. In the case of amino acid sample preparation for desalting, the conductivity measurement will define three key conditions for the sample preparation process. First, when the system is neutralized (low conductivity, by washing with excess de-ionized water); second, when the system is acidified, by washing with a strong acid (high conductivity); and third, when the system is at a basic condition of high pH (high conductivity). Taken together, this non-contact conductivity measurement for monitoring sample preparation will not only facilitate automation of the sample preparation and processing, but will also act as a way to optimize the operational time and use of consumables

  2. Automated File Transfer and Storage Management Concepts for Space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hogie, Keith; Criscuolo, Ed; Parise, Ron

    2004-01-01

    This presentation will summarize work that has been done to prototype and analyze approaches for automated file transfer and storage management for space missions. The concepts were prototyped in an environment with data files being generated at the target mission rates and stored in onboard files. The space-to-ground link was implemented using a channel simulator to introduce representative mission delays and errors. The system was operated for days with data files building up on the spacecraft and periodically being transferred to ground storage during a limited contact time. Overall performance was measured to identify limits under which the entire data volume could be transferred automatically while still fitting into the mission s limited contact time. The overall concepts, measurements, and results will be presented.

  3. Modular Automated Processing System (MAPS) for analysis of biological samples.

    SciTech Connect

    Gil, Geun-Cheol; Chirica, Gabriela S.; Fruetel, Julia A.; VanderNoot, Victoria A.; Branda, Steven S.; Schoeniger, Joseph S.; Throckmorton, Daniel J.; Brennan, James S.; Renzi, Ronald F.

    2010-10-01

    We have developed a novel modular automated processing system (MAPS) that enables reliable, high-throughput analysis as well as sample-customized processing. This system is comprised of a set of independent modules that carry out individual sample processing functions: cell lysis, protein concentration (based on hydrophobic, ion-exchange and affinity interactions), interferent depletion, buffer exchange, and enzymatic digestion of proteins of interest. Taking advantage of its unique capacity for enclosed processing of intact bioparticulates (viruses, spores) and complex serum samples, we have used MAPS for analysis of BSL1 and BSL2 samples to identify specific protein markers through integration with the portable microChemLab{trademark} and MALDI.

  4. A modular approach for automated sample preparation and chemical analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Clark, Michael L.; Turner, Terry D.; Klingler, Kerry M.; Pacetti, Randolph

    1994-01-01

    Changes in international relations, especially within the past several years, have dramatically affected the programmatic thrusts of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). The DOE now is addressing the environmental cleanup required as a result of 50 years of nuclear arms research and production. One major obstacle in the remediation of these areas is the chemical determination of potentially contaminated material using currently acceptable practices. Process bottlenecks and exposure to hazardous conditions pose problems for the DOE. One proposed solution is the application of modular automated chemistry using Standard Laboratory Modules (SLM) to perform Standard Analysis Methods (SAM). The Contaminant Analysis Automation (CAA) Program has developed standards and prototype equipment that will accelerate the development of modular chemistry technology and is transferring this technology to private industry.

  5. Fully automated open access platform for rapid, combined serial evaporation and sample reformatting.

    PubMed

    Benali, Otman; Davies, Gary; Deal, Martyn; Farrant, Elizabeth; Guthrie, Duncan; Holden, John; Wheeler, Rob

    2008-01-01

    This paper reports a novel evaporator and its integration with an automated sample handling system to create a high throughput evaporation platform. The Vaportec V-10 evaporator uses a high speed rotation motor ( approximately 6000 rpm) to spin the vial containing a sample, creating a thin film of solvent which can be readily evaporated by the application of heat to the vial, while the consequent centrifugal force prevents "bumping". An intelligent algorithm controls pressure and temperature for optimum solvent removal conditions and end of run detection, critical for automation. The system allows the option of evaporation directly from a sample source vial, or alternatively, integrated liquid handling facilities provide the capability of transferring samples portionwise from a (large) source vial or bottle to a (small) daughter container, enabling efficient sample reformatting, with minimum user intervention. The open access system makes significant advances over current vacuum centrifugal evaporators in terms of evaporation rate and ease of automation. The evaporator's main features, the integration of robotics to provide automation, and examples of evaporation rates of a wide range of solvents from a variety of containers are described.

  6. An Automated Home Made Low Cost Vibrating Sample Magnetometer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kundu, S.; Nath, T. K.

    2011-07-01

    The design and operation of a homemade low cost vibrating sample magnetometer is described here. The sensitivity of this instrument is better than 10-2 emu and found to be very efficient for the measurement of magnetization of most of the ferromagnetic and other magnetic materials as a function of temperature down to 77 K and magnetic field upto 800 Oe. Both M(H) and M(T) data acquisition are fully automated employing computer and Labview software.

  7. Device and method for automated separation of a sample of whole blood into aliquots

    DOEpatents

    Burtis, Carl A.; Johnson, Wayne F.

    1989-01-01

    A device and a method for automated processing and separation of an unmeasured sample of whole blood into multiple aliquots of plasma. Capillaries are radially oriented on a rotor, with the rotor defining a sample chamber, transfer channels, overflow chamber, overflow channel, vent channel, cell chambers, and processing chambers. A sample of whole blood is placed in the sample chamber, and when the rotor is rotated, the blood moves outward through the transfer channels to the processing chambers where the blood is centrifugally separated into a solid cellular component and a liquid plasma component. When the rotor speed is decreased, the plasma component backfills the capillaries resulting in uniform aliquots of plasma which may be used for subsequent analytical procedures.

  8. Drug discovery from Nature: automated high-quality sample preparation

    PubMed Central

    Thiericke, Ralf

    2000-01-01

    Secondary metabolites from plants, animals and microorganisms have been proven to be an outstanding source for new and innovative drugs and show a striking structural diversity that supplements chemically synthesized compounds or libraries in drug discovery programs. Unfortunately, extracts from natural sources are usually complex mixtures of compounds:: often generated in time consuming and for the most part manual processes. As quality and quantity of the provided samples play a pivotal role in the success of high-throughput screening programs this poses serious problems. In order to make samples of natural origin competitive with synthetic compound libraries, we devised a novel, automated sample preparation procedure based on solid-phase extraction (SPE). By making use of a modified Zymark RapidTrace® SPE workstation an easy-to-handle and effective fractionation method has been developed which allows the generation of highquality samples from natural origin, fulfilling the requirements of an integration into high-throughput screening programs. PMID:18924703

  9. Components for automated microfluidics sample preparation and analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Archer, M.; Erickson, J. S.; Hilliard, L. R.; Howell, P. B., Jr.; Stenger, D. A.; Ligler, F. S.; Lin, B.

    2008-02-01

    The increasing demand for portable devices to detect and identify pathogens represents an interdisciplinary effort between engineering, materials science, and molecular biology. Automation of both sample preparation and analysis is critical for performing multiplexed analyses on real world samples. This paper selects two possible components for such automated portable analyzers: modified silicon structures for use in the isolation of nucleic acids and a sheath flow system suitable for automated microflow cytometry. Any detection platform that relies on the genetic content (RNA and DNA) present in complex matrices requires careful extraction and isolation of the nucleic acids in order to ensure their integrity throughout the process. This sample pre-treatment step is commonly performed using commercially available solid phases along with various molecular biology techniques that require multiple manual steps and dedicated laboratory space. Regardless of the detection scheme, a major challenge in the integration of total analysis systems is the development of platforms compatible with current isolation techniques that will ensure the same quality of nucleic acids. Silicon is an ideal candidate for solid phase separations since it can be tailored structurally and chemically to mimic the conditions used in the laboratory. For analytical purposes, we have developed passive structures that can be used to fully ensheath one flow stream with another. As opposed to traditional flow focusing methods, our sheath flow profile is truly two dimensional, making it an ideal candidate for integration into a microfluidic flow cytometer. Such a microflow cytometer could be used to measure targets captured on either antibody- or DNA-coated beads.

  10. Automated acoustic matrix deposition for MALDI sample preparation.

    PubMed

    Aerni, Hans-Rudolf; Cornett, Dale S; Caprioli, Richard M

    2006-02-01

    Novel high-throughput sample preparation strategies for MALDI imaging mass spectrometry (IMS) and profiling are presented. An acoustic reagent multispotter was developed to provide improved reproducibility for depositing matrix onto a sample surface, for example, such as a tissue section. The unique design of the acoustic droplet ejector and its optimization for depositing matrix solution are discussed. Since it does not contain a capillary or nozzle for fluid ejection, issues with clogging of these orifices are avoided. Automated matrix deposition provides better control of conditions affecting protein extraction and matrix crystallization with the ability to deposit matrix accurately onto small surface features. For tissue sections, matrix spots of 180-200 microm in diameter were obtained and a procedure is described for generating coordinate files readable by a mass spectrometer to permit automated profile acquisition. Mass spectral quality and reproducibility was found to be better than that obtained with manual pipet spotting. The instrument can also deposit matrix spots in a dense array pattern so that, after analysis in a mass spectrometer, two-dimensional ion images may be constructed. Example ion images from a mouse brain are presented.

  11. Automated Mars surface sample return mission concepts for achievement of essential scientific objectives

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Weaver, W. L.; Norton, H. N.; Darnell, W. L.

    1975-01-01

    Mission concepts were investigated for automated return to Earth of a Mars surface sample adequate for detailed analyses in scientific laboratories. The minimum sample mass sufficient to meet scientific requirements was determined. Types of materials and supporting measurements for essential analyses are reported. A baseline trajectory profile was selected for its low energy requirements and relatively simple implementation, and trajectory profile design data were developed for 1979 and 1981 launch opportunities. Efficient spacecraft systems were conceived by utilizing existing technology where possible. Systems concepts emphasized the 1979 launch opportunity, and the applicability of results to other opportunities was assessed. It was shown that the baseline missions (return through Mars parking orbit) and some comparison missions (return after sample transfer in Mars orbit) can be accomplished by using a single Titan III E/Centaur as the launch vehicle. All missions investigated can be accomplished by use of Space Shuttle/Centaur vehicles.

  12. Extreme pressure fluid sample transfer pump

    DOEpatents

    Halverson, Justin E.; Bowman, Wilfred W.

    1990-01-01

    A transfer pump for samples of fluids at very low or very high pressures comprising a cylinder having a piston sealed with an O-ring, the piston defining forward and back chambers, an inlet and exit port and valve arrangement for the fluid to enter and leave the forward chamber, and a port and valve arrangement in the back chamber for adjusting the pressure across the piston so that the pressure differential across the piston is essentially zero and approximately equal to the pressure of the fluid so that the O-ring seals against leakage of the fluid and the piston can be easily moved, regardless of the pressure of the fluid. The piston may be actuated by a means external to the cylinder with a piston rod extending through a hole in the cylinder sealed with a bellows attached to the piston head and the interior of the back chamber.

  13. Extreme pressure fluid sample transfer pump

    SciTech Connect

    Halverson, J.E.; Bowman, W.W.

    1990-12-04

    This patent describes a transfer pump for samples of fluids at very low or very high pressures comprising a cylinder having a piston sealed with an O-ring, the piston defining forward and back chambers, an inlet and exit port and valve arrangement for the fluid to enter and leave the forward chamber, and a port and valve arrangement in the back chamber for adjusting the pressure across the piston so that the pressure differential across the piston is essentially zero and approximately equal to the pressure of the fluid so that the O-ring seals against leakage of the fluid and the piston can be easily moved, regardless of the pressure of the fluid. The piston may be actuated by a means external to the cylinder with a piston rod extending through a hole in the cylinder sealed with a bellows attached to the piston head and the interior of the back chamber.

  14. Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV) Critical Safety Software Overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berthelier, D.

    2002-01-01

    The European Automated Transfer Vehicle is an unmanned transportation system designed to dock to International Space Station (ISS) and to contribute to the logistic servicing of the ISS. Concisely, ATV control is realized by a nominal flight control function (using computers, softwares, sensors, actuators). In order to cover the extreme situations where this nominal chain can not ensure safe trajectory with respect to ISS, a segregated proximity flight safety function is activated, where unsafe free drift trajectories can be encountered. This function relies notably on a segregated computer, the Monitoring and Safing Unit (MSU) ; in case of major ATV malfunction detection, ATV is then controlled by MSU software. Therefore, this software is critical because a MSU software failure could result in catastrophic consequences. This paper provides an overview both of this software functions and of the software development and validation method which is specific considering its criticality. First part of the paper describes briefly the proximity flight safety chain. Second part deals with the software functions. Indeed, MSU software is in charge of monitoring nominal computers and ATV corridors, using its own navigation algorithms, and, if an abnormal situation is detected, it is in charge of the ATV control during the Collision Avoidance Manoeuvre (CAM) consisting in an attitude controlled braking boost, followed by a Post-CAM manoeuvre : a Sun-pointed ATV attitude control during up to 24 hours on a safe trajectory. Monitoring, navigation and control algorithms principles are presented. Third part of this paper describes the development and validation process : algorithms functional studies , ADA coding and unit validations ; algorithms ADA code integration and validation on a specific non real-time MATLAB/SIMULINK simulator ; global software functional engineering phase, architectural design, unit testing, integration and validation on target computer.

  15. Automated, Ultra-Sterile Solid Sample Handling and Analysis on a Chip

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mora, Maria F.; Stockton, Amanda M.; Willis, Peter A.

    2013-01-01

    There are no existing ultra-sterile lab-on-a-chip systems that can accept solid samples and perform complete chemical analyses without human intervention. The proposed solution is to demonstrate completely automated lab-on-a-chip manipulation of powdered solid samples, followed by on-chip liquid extraction and chemical analysis. This technology utilizes a newly invented glass micro-device for solid manipulation, which mates with existing lab-on-a-chip instrumentation. Devices are fabricated in a Class 10 cleanroom at the JPL MicroDevices Lab, and are plasma-cleaned before and after assembly. Solid samples enter the device through a drilled hole in the top. Existing micro-pumping technology is used to transfer milligrams of powdered sample into an extraction chamber where it is mixed with liquids to extract organic material. Subsequent chemical analysis is performed using portable microchip capillary electrophoresis systems (CE). These instruments have been used for ultra-highly sensitive (parts-per-trillion, pptr) analysis of organic compounds including amines, amino acids, aldehydes, ketones, carboxylic acids, and thiols. Fully autonomous amino acid analyses in liquids were demonstrated; however, to date there have been no reports of completely automated analysis of solid samples on chip. This approach utilizes an existing portable instrument that houses optics, high-voltage power supplies, and solenoids for fully autonomous microfluidic sample processing and CE analysis with laser-induced fluorescence (LIF) detection. Furthermore, the entire system can be sterilized and placed in a cleanroom environment for analyzing samples returned from extraterrestrial targets, if desired. This is an entirely new capability never demonstrated before. The ability to manipulate solid samples, coupled with lab-on-a-chip analysis technology, will enable ultraclean and ultrasensitive end-to-end analysis of samples that is orders of magnitude more sensitive than the ppb goal given

  16. Automated sample exchange and tracking system for neutron research at cryogenic temperatures.

    PubMed

    Rix, J E; Weber, J K R; Santodonato, L J; Hill, B; Walker, L M; McPherson, R; Wenzel, J; Hammons, S E; Hodges, J; Rennich, M; Volin, K J

    2007-01-01

    An automated system for sample exchange and tracking in a cryogenic environment and under remote computer control was developed. Up to 24 sample "cans" per cycle can be inserted and retrieved in a programed sequence. A video camera acquires a unique identification marked on the sample can to provide a record of the sequence. All operations are coordinated via a LABVIEW program that can be operated locally or over a network. The samples are contained in vanadium cans of 6-10 mm in diameter and equipped with a hermetically sealed lid that interfaces with the sample handler. The system uses a closed-cycle refrigerator (CCR) for cooling. The sample was delivered to a precooling location that was at a temperature of approximately 25 K, after several minutes, it was moved onto a "landing pad" at approximately 10 K that locates the sample in the probe beam. After the sample was released onto the landing pad, the sample handler was retracted. Reading the sample identification and the exchange operation takes approximately 2 min. The time to cool the sample from ambient temperature to approximately 10 K was approximately 7 min including precooling time. The cooling time increases to approximately 12 min if precooling is not used. Small differences in cooling rate were observed between sample materials and for different sample can sizes. Filling the sample well and the sample can with low pressure helium is essential to provide heat transfer and to achieve useful cooling rates. A resistive heating coil can be used to offset the refrigeration so that temperatures up to approximately 350 K can be accessed and controlled using a proportional-integral-derivative control loop. The time for the landing pad to cool to approximately 10 K after it has been heated to approximately 240 K was approximately 20 min.

  17. Device for Automated Cutting and Transfer of Plant Shoots

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cipra, Raymond; Das, Hari; Ali, Khaled; Hong, Dennis

    2003-01-01

    A device that enables the automated cutting and transfer of plant shoots is undergoing development for use in the propagation of plants in a nursery or laboratory. At present, it is standard practice for a human technician to use a knife and forceps to cut, separate, and grasp a plant shoot. The great advantage offered by the present device is that its design and operation are simpler than would be those of a device based on the manual cutting/separation/grasping procedure. [The present device should not be confused with a prior device developed for partly the same purpose and described in Compliant Gripper for a Robotic Manipulator (NPO-21104), NASA Tech Briefs, Vol. 27, No. 3 (March 2003), page 59.]. The device (see figure) includes a circular tube sharpened at its open (lower) end and mounted on a robotic manipulator at its closed (upper) end. The robotic manipulator simply pushes the sharpened open end of the tube down onto a bed of plants and rotates a few degrees clockwise then counterclockwise about the vertical axis, causing the tube to cut a cylindrical plug of plant material. Exploiting the natural friction between the tube and plug, the tube retains the plug, without need for a gripping mechanism and control. The robotic manipulator then retracts the tube, translates it to a new location over a plant-growth tray, and inserts the tube part way into the growth medium at this location in the tray. A short burst of compressed air is admitted to the upper end of the tube to eject the plug of plant material and drive it into the growth medium. A prototype has been tested and verified to function substantially as intended. It is projected that in the fully developed robotic plant-propagation system, the robot control system would include a machine- vision subsystem that would automatically guide the robotic manipulator in choosing the positions from which to cut plugs of plant material. Planned further development efforts also include more testing and

  18. Manual versus automated blood sampling: impact of repeated blood sampling on stress parameters and behavior in male NMRI mice

    PubMed Central

    Kalliokoski, Otto; Sørensen, Dorte B; Hau, Jann; Abelson, Klas S P

    2014-01-01

    Facial vein (cheek blood) and caudal vein (tail blood) phlebotomy are two commonly used techniques for obtaining blood samples from laboratory mice, while automated blood sampling through a permanent catheter is a relatively new technique in mice. The present study compared physiological parameters, glucocorticoid dynamics as well as the behavior of mice sampled repeatedly for 24 h by cheek blood, tail blood or automated blood sampling from the carotid artery. Mice subjected to cheek blood sampling lost significantly more body weight, had elevated levels of plasma corticosterone, excreted more fecal corticosterone metabolites, and expressed more anxious behavior than did the mice of the other groups. Plasma corticosterone levels of mice subjected to tail blood sampling were also elevated, although less significantly. Mice subjected to automated blood sampling were less affected with regard to the parameters measured, and expressed less anxious behavior. We conclude that repeated blood sampling by automated blood sampling and from the tail vein is less stressful than cheek blood sampling. The choice between automated blood sampling and tail blood sampling should be based on the study requirements, the resources of the laboratory and skills of the staff. PMID:24958546

  19. Automated Force Volume Image Processing for Biological Samples

    PubMed Central

    Duan, Junbo; Duval, Jérôme F. L.; Brie, David; Francius, Grégory

    2011-01-01

    Atomic force microscopy (AFM) has now become a powerful technique for investigating on a molecular level, surface forces, nanomechanical properties of deformable particles, biomolecular interactions, kinetics, and dynamic processes. This paper specifically focuses on the analysis of AFM force curves collected on biological systems, in particular, bacteria. The goal is to provide fully automated tools to achieve theoretical interpretation of force curves on the basis of adequate, available physical models. In this respect, we propose two algorithms, one for the processing of approach force curves and another for the quantitative analysis of retraction force curves. In the former, electrostatic interactions prior to contact between AFM probe and bacterium are accounted for and mechanical interactions operating after contact are described in terms of Hertz-Hooke formalism. Retraction force curves are analyzed on the basis of the Freely Jointed Chain model. For both algorithms, the quantitative reconstruction of force curves is based on the robust detection of critical points (jumps, changes of slope or changes of curvature) which mark the transitions between the various relevant interactions taking place between the AFM tip and the studied sample during approach and retraction. Once the key regions of separation distance and indentation are detected, the physical parameters describing the relevant interactions operating in these regions are extracted making use of regression procedure for fitting experiments to theory. The flexibility, accuracy and strength of the algorithms are illustrated with the processing of two force-volume images, which collect a large set of approach and retraction curves measured on a single biological surface. For each force-volume image, several maps are generated, representing the spatial distribution of the searched physical parameters as estimated for each pixel of the force-volume image. PMID:21559483

  20. Automated biowaste sampling system improved feces collection, mass measurement and sampling. [by use of a breadboard model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fogal, G. L.; Mangialardi, J. K.; Young, R.

    1974-01-01

    The capability of the basic automated Biowaste Sampling System (ABSS) hardware was extended and improved through the design, fabrication and test of breadboard hardware. A preliminary system design effort established the feasibility of integrating the breadboard concepts into the ABSS.

  1. Automated syringe sampler. [remote sampling of air and water

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Purgold, G. C. (Inventor)

    1981-01-01

    A number of sampling services are disposed in a rack which slides into a housing. In response to a signal from an antenna, the circutry elements are activated which provide power individually, collectively, or selectively to a servomechanism thereby moving an actuator arm and the attached jawed bracket supporting an evaculated tube towards a stationary needle. One open end of the needle extends through the side wall of a conduit to the interior and the other open end is maintained within the protective sleeve, supported by a bifurcated bracket. A septum in punctured by the end of the needle within the sleeve and a sample of the fluid medium in the conduit flows through the needle and is transferred to a tube. The signal to the servo is then reversed and the actuator arm moves the tube back to its original position permitting the septum to expand and seal the hole made by the needle. The jawed bracket is attached by pivot to the actuator to facilitate tube replacement.

  2. Automated Aqueous Sample Concentration Methods for in situ Astrobiological Instrumentation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aubrey, A. D.; Grunthaner, F. J.

    2009-12-01

    The era of wet chemical experiments for in situ planetary science investigations is upon us, as evidenced by recent results from the surface of Mars by Phoenix’s microscopy, electrochemistry, and conductivity analyzer, MECA [1]. Studies suggest that traditional thermal volatilization methods for planetary science in situ investigations induce organic degradation during sample processing [2], an effect that is enhanced in the presence of oxidants [3]. Recent developments have trended towards adaptation of non-destructive aqueous extraction and analytical methods for future astrobiological instrumentation. Wet chemical extraction techniques under investigation include subcritical water extraction, SCWE [4], aqueous microwave assisted extraction, MAE, and organic solvent extraction [5]. Similarly, development of miniaturized analytical space flight instruments that require aqueous extracts include microfluidic capillary electrophoresis chips, μCE [6], liquid-chromatography mass-spectrometrometers, LC-MS [7], and life marker chips, LMC [8]. If organics are present on the surface of Mars, they are expected to be present at extremely low concentrations (parts-per-billion), orders of magnitude below the sensitivities of most flight instrument technologies. Therefore, it becomes necessary to develop and integrate concentration mechanisms for in situ sample processing before delivery to analytical flight instrumentation. We present preliminary results of automated solid-phase-extraction (SPE) sample purification and concentration methods for the treatment of highly saline aqueous soil extracts. These methods take advantage of the affinity of low molecular weight organic compounds with natural and synthetic scavenger materials. These interactions allow for the separation of target organic analytes from unfavorable background species (i.e. salts) during inline treatment, and a clever method for selective desorption is utilized to obtain concentrated solutions on the order

  3. Automated Device for Asynchronous Extraction of RNA, DNA, or Protein Biomarkers from Surrogate Patient Samples.

    PubMed

    Bitting, Anna L; Bordelon, Hali; Baglia, Mark L; Davis, Keersten M; Creecy, Amy E; Short, Philip A; Albert, Laura E; Karhade, Aditya V; Wright, David W; Haselton, Frederick R; Adams, Nicholas M

    2016-12-01

    Many biomarker-based diagnostic methods are inhibited by nontarget molecules in patient samples, necessitating biomarker extraction before detection. We have developed a simple device that purifies RNA, DNA, or protein biomarkers from complex biological samples without robotics or fluid pumping. The device design is based on functionalized magnetic beads, which capture biomarkers and remove background biomolecules by magnetically transferring the beads through processing solutions arrayed within small-diameter tubing. The process was automated by wrapping the tubing around a disc-like cassette and rotating it past a magnet using a programmable motor. This device recovered biomarkers at ~80% of the operator-dependent extraction method published previously. The device was validated by extracting biomarkers from a panel of surrogate patient samples containing clinically relevant concentrations of (1) influenza A RNA in nasal swabs, (2) Escherichia coli DNA in urine, (3) Mycobacterium tuberculosis DNA in sputum, and (4) Plasmodium falciparum protein and DNA in blood. The device successfully extracted each biomarker type from samples representing low levels of clinically relevant infectivity (i.e., 7.3 copies/µL of influenza A RNA, 405 copies/µL of E. coli DNA, 0.22 copies/µL of TB DNA, 167 copies/µL of malaria parasite DNA, and 2.7 pM of malaria parasite protein).

  4. Estimates of Radionuclide Loading to Cochiti Lake from Los Alamos Canyon Using Manual and Automated Sampling

    SciTech Connect

    McLean, Christopher T.

    2000-07-01

    Los Alamos National Laboratory has a long-standing program of sampling storm water runoff inside the Laboratory boundaries. In 1995, the Laboratory started collecting the samples using automated storm water sampling stations; prior to this time the samples were collected manually. The Laboratory has also been periodically collecting sediment samples from Cochiti Lake. This paper presents the data for Pu-238 and Pu-239 bound to the sediments for Los Alamos Canyon storm water runoff and compares the sampling types by mass loading and as a percentage of the sediment deposition to Cochiti Lake. The data for both manual and automated sampling are used to calculate mass loads from Los Alamos Canyon on a yearly basis. The automated samples show mass loading 200- 500 percent greater for Pu-238 and 300-700 percent greater for Pu-239 than the manual samples. Using the mean manual flow volume for mass loading calculations, the automated samples are over 900 percent greater for Pu-238 and over 1800 percent greater for Pu-239. Evaluating the Pu-238 and Pu-239 activities as a percentage of deposition to Cochiti Lake indicates that the automated samples are 700-1300 percent greater for Pu- 238 and 200-500 percent greater for Pu-239. The variance was calculated by two methods. The first method calculates the variance for each sample event. The second method calculates the variances by the total volume of water discharged in Los Alamos Canyon for the year.

  5. Evaluation of the measurement uncertainty in automated long-term sampling of PCDD/PCDFs.

    PubMed

    Vicaretti, M; D'Emilia, G; Mosca, S; Guerriero, E; Rotatori, M

    2013-12-01

    Since the publication of the first version of European standard EN-1948 in 1996, long-term sampling equipment has been improved to a high standard for the sampling and analysis of polychlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (PCDD)/polychlorodibenzofuran (PCDF) emissions from industrial sources. The current automated PCDD/PCDF sampling systems enable to extend the measurement time from 6-8 h to 15-30 days in order to have data values better representative of the real pollutant emission of the plant in the long period. EN-1948:2006 is still the European technical reference standard for the determination of PCDD/PCDF from stationary source emissions. In this paper, a methodology to estimate the measurement uncertainty of long-term automated sampling is presented. The methodology has been tested on a set of high concentration sampling data resulting from a specific experience; it is proposed with the intent that it is to be applied on further similar studies and generalized. A comparison between short-term sampling data resulting from manual and automated parallel measurements has been considered also in order to verify the feasibility and usefulness of automated systems and to establish correlations between results of the two methods to use a manual method for calibration of automatic long-term one. The uncertainty components of the manual method are analyzed, following the requirements of EN-1948-3:2006, allowing to have a preliminary evaluation of the corresponding uncertainty components of the automated system. Then, a comparison between experimental data coming from parallel sampling campaigns carried out in short- and long-term sampling periods is realized. Long-term sampling is more reliable to monitor PCDD/PCDF emissions than occasional short-term sampling. Automated sampling systems can assure very useful emission data both in short and long sampling periods. Despite this, due to the different application of the long-term sampling systems, the automated results could not be

  6. From Sample Changer to the Robotic Rheometer: Automation and High Throughput Screening in Rotational Rheometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Läuger, Jörg; Krenn, Michael

    2008-07-01

    A fully automated, robotically operated rheometer was developed. The full functionality, modularity and accuracy of the rotational rheometer are available, which means the modern principles of high-throughput screening are brought to full function on the rheometer. The basic rheometer setup remains as modular as before including the ability to run all test modes the rheometer offers with the difference that the high-throughput rheometer now performs all measuring steps automatically. In addition, the standard and proven environmental chambers of the rheometer are available. The rheometer itself runs by the standard rheometer software and the measurement data and analysis results can be transferred to a monitoring database. The sample loading and the cleaning of the geometries is assisted by a sample preparation unit and a cleaning station, respectively. The sample throughput is further maximized by the use of multiple geometries allowing the simultaneous rheological measurement by the rheometer and the cleaning of the geometries at the cleaning station by the robot. The High-Throughput Rheometer (HTR) and its special adaptation to different applications like dispersions and polymer melts are described.

  7. Technology transfer potential of an automated water monitoring system. [market research

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jamieson, W. M.; Hillman, M. E. D.; Eischen, M. A.; Stilwell, J. M.

    1976-01-01

    The nature and characteristics of the potential economic need (markets) for a highly integrated water quality monitoring system were investigated. The technological, institutional and marketing factors that would influence the transfer and adoption of an automated system were studied for application to public and private water supply, public and private wastewater treatment and environmental monitoring of rivers and lakes.

  8. AST: an automated sequence-sampling method for improving the taxonomic diversity of gene phylogenetic trees.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Chan; Mao, Fenglou; Yin, Yanbin; Huang, Jinling; Gogarten, Johann Peter; Xu, Ying

    2014-01-01

    A challenge in phylogenetic inference of gene trees is how to properly sample a large pool of homologous sequences to derive a good representative subset of sequences. Such a need arises in various applications, e.g. when (1) accuracy-oriented phylogenetic reconstruction methods may not be able to deal with a large pool of sequences due to their high demand in computing resources; (2) applications analyzing a collection of gene trees may prefer to use trees with fewer operational taxonomic units (OTUs), for instance for the detection of horizontal gene transfer events by identifying phylogenetic conflicts; and (3) the pool of available sequences is biased towards extensively studied species. In the past, the creation of subsamples often relied on manual selection. Here we present an Automated sequence-Sampling method for improving the Taxonomic diversity of gene phylogenetic trees, AST, to obtain representative sequences that maximize the taxonomic diversity of the sampled sequences. To demonstrate the effectiveness of AST, we have tested it to solve four problems, namely, inference of the evolutionary histories of the small ribosomal subunit protein S5 of E. coli, 16 S ribosomal RNAs and glycosyl-transferase gene family 8, and a study of ancient horizontal gene transfers from bacteria to plants. Our results show that the resolution of our computational results is almost as good as that of manual inference by domain experts, hence making the tool generally useful to phylogenetic studies by non-phylogeny specialists. The program is available at http://csbl.bmb.uga.edu/~zhouchan/AST.php.

  9. AST: An Automated Sequence-Sampling Method for Improving the Taxonomic Diversity of Gene Phylogenetic Trees

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Chan; Mao, Fenglou; Yin, Yanbin; Huang, Jinling; Gogarten, Johann Peter; Xu, Ying

    2014-01-01

    A challenge in phylogenetic inference of gene trees is how to properly sample a large pool of homologous sequences to derive a good representative subset of sequences. Such a need arises in various applications, e.g. when (1) accuracy-oriented phylogenetic reconstruction methods may not be able to deal with a large pool of sequences due to their high demand in computing resources; (2) applications analyzing a collection of gene trees may prefer to use trees with fewer operational taxonomic units (OTUs), for instance for the detection of horizontal gene transfer events by identifying phylogenetic conflicts; and (3) the pool of available sequences is biased towards extensively studied species. In the past, the creation of subsamples often relied on manual selection. Here we present an Automated sequence-Sampling method for improving the Taxonomic diversity of gene phylogenetic trees, AST, to obtain representative sequences that maximize the taxonomic diversity of the sampled sequences. To demonstrate the effectiveness of AST, we have tested it to solve four problems, namely, inference of the evolutionary histories of the small ribosomal subunit protein S5 of E. coli, 16 S ribosomal RNAs and glycosyl-transferase gene family 8, and a study of ancient horizontal gene transfers from bacteria to plants. Our results show that the resolution of our computational results is almost as good as that of manual inference by domain experts, hence making the tool generally useful to phylogenetic studies by non-phylogeny specialists. The program is available at http://csbl.bmb.uga.edu/~zhouchan/AST.php. PMID:24892935

  10. A New Automated Method and Sample Data Flow for Analysis of Volatile Nitrosamines in Human Urine*

    PubMed Central

    Hodgson, James A.; Seyler, Tiffany H.; McGahee, Ernest; Arnstein, Stephen; Wang, Lanqing

    2016-01-01

    Volatile nitrosamines (VNAs) are a group of compounds classified as probable (group 2A) and possible (group 2B) carcinogens in humans. Along with certain foods and contaminated drinking water, VNAs are detected at high levels in tobacco products and in both mainstream and sidestream smoke. Our laboratory monitors six urinary VNAs—N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA), N-nitrosomethylethylamine (NMEA), N-nitrosodiethylamine (NDEA), N-nitrosopiperidine (NPIP), N-nitrosopyrrolidine (NPYR), and N-nitrosomorpholine (NMOR)—using isotope dilution GC-MS/MS (QQQ) for large population studies such as the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES). In this paper, we report for the first time a new automated sample preparation method to more efficiently quantitate these VNAs. Automation is done using Hamilton STAR™ and Caliper Staccato™ workstations. This new automated method reduces sample preparation time from 4 hours to 2.5 hours while maintaining precision (inter-run CV < 10%) and accuracy (85% - 111%). More importantly this method increases sample throughput while maintaining a low limit of detection (<10 pg/mL) for all analytes. A streamlined sample data flow was created in parallel to the automated method, in which samples can be tracked from receiving to final LIMs output with minimal human intervention, further minimizing human error in the sample preparation process. This new automated method and the sample data flow are currently applied in bio-monitoring of VNAs in the US non-institutionalized population NHANES 2013-2014 cycle. PMID:26949569

  11. Automation of a Surface Sampling Probe/Electrospray Mass Spectrometry System

    SciTech Connect

    Kertesz, Vilmos; Ford, Michael J; Van Berkel, Gary J

    2005-01-01

    An image analysis automation concept and the associated software (HandsFree TLC/MS) were developed to control the surface sampling probe-to-surface distance during operation of a surface sampling electrospray system. This automation system enables both 'hands-free' formation of the liquid microjunction used to sample material from the surface and hands-free reoptimization of the microjunction thickness during a surface scan to achieve a fully automated surface sampling system. The image analysis concept and the practical implementation of the monitoring and automated adjustment of the sampling probe-to-surface distance (i.e., liquid microjunction thickness) are presented. The added capabilities for the preexisting surface sampling electrospray system afforded through this software control are illustrated by an example of automated scanning of multiple development lanes on a reversed-phase C8 TLC plate and by imaging inked lettering on a paper surface. The post data acquisition processing and data display aspects of the software package are also discussed.

  12. Automated versus manual sample inoculations in routine clinical microbiology: a performance evaluation of the fully automated InoqulA instrument.

    PubMed

    Froment, P; Marchandin, H; Vande Perre, P; Lamy, B

    2014-03-01

    The process of plate streaking has been automated to improve the culture readings, isolation quality, and workflow of microbiology laboratories. However, instruments have not been well evaluated under routine conditions. We aimed to evaluate the performance of the fully automated InoqulA instrument (BD Kiestra B.V., The Netherlands) in the automated seeding of liquid specimens and samples collected using swabs with transport medium. We compared manual and automated methods according to the (i) within-run reproducibility using Escherichia coli-calibrated suspensions, (ii) intersample contamination using a series of alternating sterile broths and broths with >10(5) CFU/ml of either E. coli or Proteus mirabilis, (iii) isolation quality with standardized mixed bacterial suspensions of diverse complexity and a 4-category standardized scale (very poor, poor, fair to good, or excellent), and (iv) agreement of the results obtained from 244 clinical specimens. By involving 15 technicians in the latter part of the comparative study, we estimated the variability in the culture quality at the level of the laboratory team. The instrument produced satisfactory reproducibility with no sample cross-contamination, and it performed better than the manual method, with more colony types recovered and isolated (up to 11% and 17%, respectively). Finally, we showed that the instrument did not shorten the seeding time over short periods of work compared to that for the manual method. Altogether, the instrument improved the quality and standardization of the isolation, thereby contributing to a better overall workflow, shortened the time to results, and provided more accurate results for polymicrobial specimens.

  13. The Stanford Automated Mounter: Pushing the limits of sample exchange at the SSRL macromolecular crystallography beamlines

    SciTech Connect

    Russi, Silvia; Song, Jinhu; McPhillips, Scott E.; Cohen, Aina E.

    2016-02-24

    The Stanford Automated Mounter System, a system for mounting and dismounting cryo-cooled crystals, has been upgraded to increase the throughput of samples on the macromolecular crystallography beamlines at the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource. This upgrade speeds up robot maneuvers, reduces the heating/drying cycles, pre-fetches samples and adds an air-knife to remove frost from the gripper arms. As a result, sample pin exchange during automated crystal quality screening now takes about 25 s, five times faster than before this upgrade.

  14. The Stanford Automated Mounter: Pushing the limits of sample exchange at the SSRL macromolecular crystallography beamlines

    DOE PAGES

    Russi, Silvia; Song, Jinhu; McPhillips, Scott E.; ...

    2016-02-24

    The Stanford Automated Mounter System, a system for mounting and dismounting cryo-cooled crystals, has been upgraded to increase the throughput of samples on the macromolecular crystallography beamlines at the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource. This upgrade speeds up robot maneuvers, reduces the heating/drying cycles, pre-fetches samples and adds an air-knife to remove frost from the gripper arms. As a result, sample pin exchange during automated crystal quality screening now takes about 25 s, five times faster than before this upgrade.

  15. The Stanford Automated Mounter: pushing the limits of sample exchange at the SSRL macromolecular crystallography beamlines

    PubMed Central

    Russi, Silvia; Song, Jinhu; McPhillips, Scott E.; Cohen, Aina E.

    2016-01-01

    The Stanford Automated Mounter System, a system for mounting and dismounting cryo-cooled crystals, has been upgraded to increase the throughput of samples on the macromolecular crystallography beamlines at the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource. This upgrade speeds up robot maneuvers, reduces the heating/drying cycles, pre-fetches samples and adds an air-knife to remove frost from the gripper arms. Sample pin exchange during automated crystal quality screening now takes about 25 s, five times faster than before this upgrade. PMID:27047309

  16. Automated biowaste sampling system, solids subsystem operating model, part 2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fogal, G. L.; Mangialardi, J. K.; Stauffer, R. E.

    1973-01-01

    The detail design and fabrication of the Solids Subsystem were implemented. The system's capacity for the collection, storage or sampling of feces and vomitus from six subjects was tested and verified.

  17. Laser ablation sample transfer for mass spectrometry imaging.

    PubMed

    Park, Sung-Gun; Murray, Kermit K

    2015-01-01

    Infrared laser ablation sample transfer (IR-LAST) is a novel ambient sampling technique for mass spectrometry. In this technique, a pulsed mid-IR laser is used to ablate materials that are collected for mass spectrometry analysis; the material can be a solid sample or deposited on a sample target. After collection, the sample can be further separated or analyzed directly by mass spectrometry. For IR-LAST sample transfer tissue imaging using MALDI mass spectrometry, a tissue section is placed on a sample slide and material transferred to a target slide by scanning the tissue sample under a focused laser beam using transmission-mode (back side) IR laser ablation. After transfer, the target slide is analyzed using MALDI imaging. The spatial resolution is approximately 400 μm and limited by the spread of the laser desorption plume. IR-LAST for MALDI imaging provides several new capabilities including ambient sampling, area to spot concentration of ablated material, multiple ablation and analysis from a single section, and direct deposition on matrix-free nanostructured targets.

  18. Concepts to Automate Fluid Transfer Capability of Low Impact Docking System (LIDS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Miernik, Janie H.; Lukens, Scott; Robertson, Jeff

    2005-01-01

    The capability to transfer mass between spacecraft is necessary for many mission scenarios. Docking and berthing operations have enabled fluid, electrical, crew and equipment transfers to some degree on all manned space operations since the Gemini program. The Apollo program performed some sophisticated docking maneuvers to land men on the moon and return them safely to Earth. These programs primarily transferred crew, equipment, and pressurized atmosphere between docked spacecraft. The International Space Station (ISS) U.S. modules are connected by Common Berthing Mechanism (CBM) portals. They provide many feed-through ports for electrical, and fluid transfer between modules, as well as a large diameter crew and equipment tunnel. Fluid and electrical jumpers are manually installed after the CBM sealing surfaces have been securely mated to maintain the pressurized cabin environment. CBM berthing and subsequent fluid transfer capability requires a lengthy manual process involving an active interface that mates with a passive half. The Androgynous Peripheral Attach System (MAS) a Russian technology that docked the Russian Zarya module to Unity, or Node 1, is a more complex system that also is capable of fuel transfer, enabling refueling of the Russian re-boost engines on ISS. For several years, a Low Impact Docking System (LIDS) has been under development at Johnson Space Center (JSC). This docking technology has a requirement to be androgynous in order to allow the fabrication of a single configuration that can dock with all other LIDS units. It is desired to make electrical and fluid coupling mating an automated process to enable routine docking and undocking operations to support future exploration missions. It is envisioned that modular design and vehicle assembly will require an efficient LIDS for fuel, electrical, crew, and equipment transfer. Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) has joined the LIDS development effort and plans to employ fluid transfer concepts

  19. An Automated Sample Divider for Farmers Stock Peanuts

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In-shell peanuts are harvested, loaded into drying trailers, and delivered to a central facility where they are dried to a moisture content safe for long term storage, sampled, graded, then unloaded into bulk storage. Drying trailers have capacities ranging from five to twenty-five tons of dry farme...

  20. Automated biowaste sampling system urine subsystem operating model, part 1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fogal, G. L.; Mangialardi, J. K.; Rosen, F.

    1973-01-01

    The urine subsystem automatically provides for the collection, volume sensing, and sampling of urine from six subjects during space flight. Verification of the subsystem design was a primary objective of the current effort which was accomplished thru the detail design, fabrication, and verification testing of an operating model of the subsystem.

  1. The Impact of Sampling Approach on Population Invariance in Automated Scoring of Essays. Research Report. ETS RR-13-18

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zhang, Mo

    2013-01-01

    Many testing programs use automated scoring to grade essays. One issue in automated essay scoring that has not been examined adequately is population invariance and its causes. The primary purpose of this study was to investigate the impact of sampling in model calibration on population invariance of automated scores. This study analyzed scores…

  2. Development of an automated sample preparation module for environmental monitoring of biowarfare agents.

    PubMed

    Hindson, Benjamin J; Brown, Steve B; Marshall, Graham D; McBride, Mary T; Makarewicz, Anthony J; Gutierrez, Dora M; Wolcott, Duane K; Metz, Thomas R; Madabhushi, Ramakrishna S; Dzenitis, John M; Colston, Billy W

    2004-07-01

    An automated sample preparation module, based upon sequential injection analysis (SIA), has been developed for use within an autonomous pathogen detection system. The SIA system interfaced aerosol sampling with multiplexed microsphere immunoassay-flow cytometric detection. Metering and sequestering of microspheres using SIA was found to be reproducible and reliable, over 24-h periods of autonomous operation. Four inbuilt immunoassay controls showed excellent immunoassay and system stability over five days of unattended continuous operation. Titration curves for two biological warfare agents, Bacillus anthracis and Yersinia pestis, obtained using the automated SIA procedure were shown to be similar to those generated using a manual microtiter plate procedure.

  3. Automated Sample Preparation for Radiogenic and Non-Traditional Metal Isotopes: Removing an Analytical Barrier for High Sample Throughput

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Field, M. Paul; Romaniello, Stephen; Gordon, Gwyneth W.; Anbar, Ariel D.; Herrmann, Achim; Martinez-Boti, Miguel A.; Anagnostou, Eleni; Foster, Gavin L.

    2014-05-01

    MC-ICP-MS has dramatically improved the analytical throughput for high-precision radiogenic and non-traditional isotope ratio measurements, compared to TIMS. The generation of large data sets, however, remains hampered by tedious manual drip chromatography required for sample purification. A new, automated chromatography system reduces the laboratory bottle neck and expands the utility of high-precision isotope analyses in applications where large data sets are required: geochemistry, forensic anthropology, nuclear forensics, medical research and food authentication. We have developed protocols to automate ion exchange purification for several isotopic systems (B, Ca, Fe, Cu, Zn, Sr, Cd, Pb and U) using the new prepFAST-MC™ (ESI, Nebraska, Omaha). The system is not only inert (all-flouropolymer flow paths), but is also very flexible and can easily facilitate different resins, samples, and reagent types. When programmed, precise and accurate user defined volumes and flow rates are implemented to automatically load samples, wash the column, condition the column and elute fractions. Unattended, the automated, low-pressure ion exchange chromatography system can process up to 60 samples overnight. Excellent reproducibility, reliability, recovery, with low blank and carry over for samples in a variety of different matrices, have been demonstrated to give accurate and precise isotopic ratios within analytical error for several isotopic systems (B, Ca, Fe, Cu, Zn, Sr, Cd, Pb and U). This illustrates the potential of the new prepFAST-MC™ (ESI, Nebraska, Omaha) as a powerful tool in radiogenic and non-traditional isotope research.

  4. Infrared laser ablation sample transfer for MALDI imaging.

    PubMed

    Park, Sung-Gun; Murray, Kermit K

    2012-04-03

    An infrared laser was used to ablate material from tissue sections under ambient conditions for direct collection on a matrix assisted laser desorption ionization (MALDI) target. A 10 μm thick tissue sample was placed on a microscope slide and was mounted tissue-side down between 70 and 450 μm from a second microscope slide. The two slides were mounted on a translation stage, and the tissue was scanned in two dimensions under a focused mid-infrared (IR) laser beam to transfer material to the target slide via ablation. After the material was transferred to the target slide, it was analyzed using MALDI imaging using a tandem time-of-flight mass spectrometer. Images were obtained from peptide standards for initial optimization of the system and from mouse brain tissue sections using deposition either onto a matrix precoated target or with matrix addition after sample transfer and compared with those from standard MALDI mass spectrometry imaging. The spatial resolution of the transferred material is approximately 400 μm. Laser ablation sample transfer provides several new capabilities not possible with conventional MALDI imaging including (1) ambient sampling for MALDI imaging, (2) area to spot concentration of ablated material, (3) collection of material for multiple imaging analyses, and (4) direct collection onto nanostructure assisted laser desorption ionization (NALDI) targets without blotting or ultrathin sections.

  5. High-throughput sample processing and sample management; the functional evolution of classical cytogenetic assay towards automation.

    PubMed

    Ramakumar, Adarsh; Subramanian, Uma; Prasanna, Pataje G S

    2015-11-01

    High-throughput individual diagnostic dose assessment is essential for medical management of radiation-exposed subjects after a mass casualty. Cytogenetic assays such as the Dicentric Chromosome Assay (DCA) are recognized as the gold standard by international regulatory authorities. DCA is a multi-step and multi-day bioassay. DCA, as described in the IAEA manual, can be used to assess dose up to 4-6 weeks post-exposure quite accurately but throughput is still a major issue and automation is very essential. The throughput is limited, both in terms of sample preparation as well as analysis of chromosome aberrations. Thus, there is a need to design and develop novel solutions that could utilize extensive laboratory automation for sample preparation, and bioinformatics approaches for chromosome-aberration analysis to overcome throughput issues. We have transitioned the bench-based cytogenetic DCA to a coherent process performing high-throughput automated biodosimetry for individual dose assessment ensuring quality control (QC) and quality assurance (QA) aspects in accordance with international harmonized protocols. A Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) is designed, implemented and adapted to manage increased sample processing capacity, develop and maintain standard operating procedures (SOP) for robotic instruments, avoid data transcription errors during processing, and automate analysis of chromosome-aberrations using an image analysis platform. Our efforts described in this paper intend to bridge the current technological gaps and enhance the potential application of DCA for a dose-based stratification of subjects following a mass casualty. This paper describes one such potential integrated automated laboratory system and functional evolution of the classical DCA towards increasing critically needed throughput.

  6. Automated Protein Biomarker Analysis: on-line extraction of clinical samples by Molecularly Imprinted Polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rossetti, Cecilia; Świtnicka-Plak, Magdalena A.; Grønhaug Halvorsen, Trine; Cormack, Peter A. G.; Sellergren, Börje; Reubsaet, Léon

    2017-03-01

    Robust biomarker quantification is essential for the accurate diagnosis of diseases and is of great value in cancer management. In this paper, an innovative diagnostic platform is presented which provides automated molecularly imprinted solid-phase extraction (MISPE) followed by liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) for biomarker determination using ProGastrin Releasing Peptide (ProGRP), a highly sensitive biomarker for Small Cell Lung Cancer, as a model. Molecularly imprinted polymer microspheres were synthesized by precipitation polymerization and analytical optimization of the most promising material led to the development of an automated quantification method for ProGRP. The method enabled analysis of patient serum samples with elevated ProGRP levels. Particularly low sample volumes were permitted using the automated extraction within a method which was time-efficient, thereby demonstrating the potential of such a strategy in a clinical setting.

  7. Automated Protein Biomarker Analysis: on-line extraction of clinical samples by Molecularly Imprinted Polymers

    PubMed Central

    Rossetti, Cecilia; Świtnicka-Plak, Magdalena A.; Grønhaug Halvorsen, Trine; Cormack, Peter A.G.; Sellergren, Börje; Reubsaet, Léon

    2017-01-01

    Robust biomarker quantification is essential for the accurate diagnosis of diseases and is of great value in cancer management. In this paper, an innovative diagnostic platform is presented which provides automated molecularly imprinted solid-phase extraction (MISPE) followed by liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) for biomarker determination using ProGastrin Releasing Peptide (ProGRP), a highly sensitive biomarker for Small Cell Lung Cancer, as a model. Molecularly imprinted polymer microspheres were synthesized by precipitation polymerization and analytical optimization of the most promising material led to the development of an automated quantification method for ProGRP. The method enabled analysis of patient serum samples with elevated ProGRP levels. Particularly low sample volumes were permitted using the automated extraction within a method which was time-efficient, thereby demonstrating the potential of such a strategy in a clinical setting. PMID:28303910

  8. An automated integrated platform for rapid and sensitive multiplexed protein profiling using human saliva samples.

    PubMed

    Nie, Shuai; Henley, W Hampton; Miller, Scott E; Zhang, Huaibin; Mayer, Kathryn M; Dennis, Patty J; Oblath, Emily A; Alarie, Jean Pierre; Wu, Yue; Oppenheim, Frank G; Little, Frédéric F; Uluer, Ahmet Z; Wang, Peidong; Ramsey, J Michael; Walt, David R

    2014-03-21

    During the last decade, saliva has emerged as a potentially ideal diagnostic biofluid for noninvasive testing. In this paper, we present an automated, integrated platform useable by minimally trained personnel in the field for the diagnosis of respiratory diseases using human saliva as a sample specimen. In this platform, a saliva sample is loaded onto a disposable microfluidic chip containing all the necessary reagents and components required for saliva analysis. The chip is then inserted into the automated analyzer, the SDReader, where multiple potential protein biomarkers for respiratory diseases are measured simultaneously using a microsphere-based array via fluorescence sandwich immunoassays. The results are read optically, and the images are analyzed by a custom-designed algorithm. The fully automated assay requires as little as 10 μL of saliva sample, and the results are reported in 70 min. The performance of the platform was characterized by testing protein standard solutions, and the results were comparable to those from the 3.5 h lab bench assay that we have previously reported. The device was also deployed in two clinical environments where 273 human saliva samples collected from different subjects were successfully tested, demonstrating the device's potential to assist clinicians with the diagnosis of respiratory diseases by providing timely protein biomarker profiling information. This platform, which combines noninvasive sample collection and fully automated analysis, can also be utilized in point-of-care diagnostics.

  9. Automated laboratory based X-ray beamline with multi-capillary sample chamber

    SciTech Connect

    Purushothaman, S.; Gauthé, B. L. L. E.; Brooks, N. J.; Templer, R. H.; Ces, O.

    2013-08-15

    An automated laboratory based X-ray beamline with a multi-capillary sample chamber capable of undertaking small angle X-ray scattering measurements on a maximum of 104 samples at a time as a function of temperature between 5 and 85 °C has been developed. The modular format of the system enables the user to simultaneously equilibrate samples at eight different temperatures with an accuracy of ±0.005 °C. This system couples a rotating anode generator and 2D optoelectronic detector with Franks X-ray optics, leading to typical exposure times of less than 5 min for lyotropic liquid crystalline samples. Beamline control including sample exchange and data acquisition has been fully automated via a custom designed LabVIEW framework.

  10. A device for automated direct sampling and quantitation from solid-phase sorbent extraction cards by electrospray tandem mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Wachs, Timothy; Henion, Jack

    2003-04-01

    A new solid-phase extraction (SPE) device in the 96-well format (SPE Card) has been employed for automated off-line sample preparation of low-volume urine samples. On-line automated analyte elution via SPE and direct quantitation by micro ion spray mass spectrometry is reported. This sample preparation device has the format of a microtiter plate and is molded in a plastic frame which houses 96 separate sandwiched 3M Empore sorbents (0.5-mm-thickness, 8-microm particles) covered on both sides by a microfiber support material. Ninety-six discrete SPE zones, each 7 mm in diameter, are imbedded into the sheet in the conventional 9-mm pitch (spacing) of a 96-well microtiter plate. In this study one-quarter of an SPE Card (24 individual zones) was used merely as a convenience. After automated off-line interference elution of applied human urine from 24 samples, a section of SPE Card is mounted vertically on a computer-controlled X, Y, Z positioner in front of a micro ion spray direct sampling tube equipped with a beveled tip. The beveled tip of this needle robotically penetrates each SPE elution zone (sorbent disk) or stationary phase in a serial fashion. The eluted analytes are sequentially transferred directly to a microelectrosprayer to obtain tandem mass spectrometric (MS/MS) analysis. This strategy precludes any HPLC separation and the associated method development. The quantitative determination of Ritalin (methylphenidate) from fortified human urine samples is demonstrated. A trideuterated internal standard of methylphenidate was used to obtain ion current response ratios between the parent drug and the internal standard. Human control urine samples fortified from 6.6 to 3300 ng/mL (normal therapeutic levels have been determined in other studies to be between 50 and 100 ng/mL urine) were analyzed and a linear calibration curve was obtained with a correlation coefficient of 0.9999, where the precision of the quality control (QC) samples ranged from 9.6% at the 24

  11. An automated system for global atmospheric sampling using B-747 airliners

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lew, K. Q.; Gustafsson, U. R. C.; Johnson, R. E.

    1981-01-01

    The global air sampling program utilizes commercial aircrafts in scheduled service to measure atmospheric constituents. A fully automated system designed for the 747 aircraft is described. Airline operational constraints and data and control subsystems are treated. The overall program management, system monitoring, and data retrieval from four aircraft in global service is described.

  12. Technology Transfer Opportunities: Automated Ground-Water Monitoring, A Proven Technology

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Smith, Kirk P.; Granato, Gregory E.

    1998-01-01

    Introduction The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has developed and tested an automated ground-water monitoring system that measures and records values of selected water-quality properties and constituents using protocols approved for manual sampling. Prototypes using the automated process have demonstrated the ability to increase the quantity and quality of data collected and have shown the potential for reducing labor and material costs for ground-water quality data collection. Automated ground-water monitoring systems can be used to monitor known or potential contaminant sites, such as near landfills, underground storage tanks, or other facilities where potential contaminants are stored, to serve as early warning systems monitoring ground-water quality near public water-supply wells, and for ground-water quality research.

  13. Organic gunshot residues: Observations about sampling and transfer mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Gassner, Anne-Laure; Ribeiro, Cristina; Kobylinska, Joanna; Zeichner, Arie; Weyermann, Céline

    2016-09-01

    This work aimed at studying the sampling, storage, transfer and persistence of organic gunshot residue (OGSR), mainly stabilizers, using liquid chromatography hyphenated to mass spectrometry. Collection using swabs and stubs was compared through sequential sampling in terms of amount of residues left on the hand of a shooter. While stubs collected nearly all residues, swabs left about 50% of the residues on the hands. Moreover, the study of storage conditions after sampling showed that stubs were more stable than swabs and could be held at room temperature without significant compound loss up to 2weeks. Then, shooting experiments were performed to evaluate transfer of OGSR. It was not possible to differentiate different brands of ammunition based on a single compound concentration. Moreover, a memory effect was identified when different ammunition was shot using the same firearm. Finally, various exposed skin surfaces and hair as well as clothing were sampled to estimate what surfaces might be the best targets for OGSR sampling by comparing results just after discharge and 2h after discharging a pistol. The results indicated that OGSR were more rapidly lost from hands than from clothing. Moreover, it was shown that the face and hair of a suspect might be contaminated through secondary transfer. Thus, OGSR might remain longer on other skin surfaces, hair and clothing than on the hands of a suspect. As a consequence, sampling should also include clothing, hair and face.

  14. Application of bar codes to the automation of analytical sample data collection

    SciTech Connect

    Jurgensen, H A

    1986-01-01

    The Health Protection Department at the Savannah River Plant collects 500 urine samples per day for tritium analyses. Prior to automation, all sample information was compiled manually. Bar code technology was chosen for automating this program because it provides a more accurate, efficient, and inexpensive method for data entry. The system has three major functions: sample labeling is accomplished at remote bar code label stations composed of an Intermec 8220 (Intermec Corp.) interfaced to an IBM-PC, data collection is done on a central VAX 11/730 (Digital Equipment Corp.). Bar code readers are used to log-in samples to be analyzed on liquid scintillation counters. The VAX 11/730 processes the data and generates reports, data storage is on the VAX 11/730 and backed up on the plant's central computer. A brief description of several other bar code applications at the Savannah River Plant is also presented.

  15. Sample Tracking in an Automated Cytogenetic Biodosimetry Laboratory for Radiation Mass Casualties.

    PubMed

    Martin, P R; Berdychevski, R E; Subramanian, U; Blakely, W F; Prasanna, P G S

    2007-07-01

    Chromosome aberration-based dicentric assay is expected to be used after mass casualty life-threatening radiation exposures to assess radiation dose to individuals. This will require processing of a large number of samples for individual dose assessment and clinical triage to aid treatment decisions. We have established an automated, high-throughput, cytogenetic biodosimetry laboratory to process a large number of samples for conducting the dicentric assay using peripheral blood from exposed individuals according to internationally accepted laboratory protocols (i.e., within days following radiation exposures). The components of an automated cytogenetic biodosimetry laboratory include blood collection kits for sample shipment, a cell viability analyzer, a robotic liquid handler, an automated metaphase harvester, a metaphase spreader, high-throughput slide stainer and coverslipper, a high-throughput metaphase finder, multiple satellite chromosome-aberration analysis systems, and a computerized sample tracking system. Laboratory automation using commercially available, off-the-shelf technologies, customized technology integration, and implementation of a laboratory information management system (LIMS) for cytogenetic analysis will significantly increase throughput.This paper focuses on our efforts to eliminate data transcription errors, increase efficiency, and maintain samples' positive chain-of-custody by sample tracking during sample processing and data analysis. This sample tracking system represents a "beta" version, which can be modeled elsewhere in a cytogenetic biodosimetry laboratory, and includes a customized LIMS with a central server, personal computer workstations, barcode printers, fixed station and wireless hand-held devices to scan barcodes at various critical steps, and data transmission over a private intra-laboratory computer network. Our studies will improve diagnostic biodosimetry response, aid confirmation of clinical triage, and medical

  16. Using sample entropy for automated sign language recognition on sEMG and accelerometer data.

    PubMed

    Kosmidou, Vasiliki E; Hadjileontiadis, Leontios I

    2010-03-01

    Communication using sign language (SL) provides alternative means for information transmission among the deaf. Automated gesture recognition involved in SL, however, could further expand this communication channel to the world of hearers. In this study, data from five-channel surface electromyogram and three-dimensional accelerometer from signers' dominant hand were subjected to a feature extraction process. The latter consisted of sample entropy (SampEn)-based analysis, whereas time-frequency feature (TFF) analysis was also performed as a baseline method for the automated recognition of 60-word lexicon Greek SL (GSL) isolated signs. Experimental results have shown a 66 and 92% mean classification accuracy threshold using TFF and SampEn, respectively. These results justify the superiority of SampEn against conventional methods, such as TFF, to provide with high recognition hit-ratios, combined with feature vector dimension reduction, toward a fast and reliable automated GSL gesture recognition.

  17. Orbit transfer rocket engine technology program: Automated preflight methods concept definition

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Erickson, C. M.; Hertzberg, D. W.

    1991-01-01

    The possibility of automating preflight engine checkouts on orbit transfer engines is discussed. The minimum requirements in terms of information and processing necessary to assess the engine'e integrity and readiness to perform its mission were first defined. A variety of ways for remotely obtaining that information were generated. The sophistication of these approaches varied from a simple preliminary power up, where the engine is fired up for the first time, to the most advanced approach where the sensor and operational history data system alone indicates engine integrity. The critical issues and benefits of these methods were identified, outlined, and prioritized. The technology readiness of each of these automated preflight methods were then rated on a NASA Office of Exploration scale used for comparing technology options for future mission choices. Finally, estimates were made of the remaining cost to advance the technology for each method to a level where the system validation models have been demonstrated in a simulated environment.

  18. S- to N-Palmitoyl Transfer During Proteomic Sample Preparation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ji, Yuhuan; Bachschmid, Markus M.; Costello, Catherine E.; Lin, Cheng

    2016-04-01

    N-palmitoylation has been reported in a number of proteins and suggested to play an important role in protein localization and functions. However, it remains unclear whether N-palmitoylation is a direct enzyme-catalyzed process, or results from intramolecular S- to N-palmitoyl transfer. Here, using the S-palmitoyl peptide standard, GCpalmLGNAK, as the model system, we observed palmitoyl migration from the cysteine residue to either the peptide N-terminus or the lysine side chain during incubation in both neutral and slightly basic buffers commonly used in proteomic sample preparation. Palmitoyl transfer can take place either intra- or inter-molecularly, with the peptide N-terminus being the preferred migration site, presumably because of its lower basicity. The extent of intramolecular palmitoyl migration was low in the system studied, as it required the formation of an entropically unfavored macrocycle intermediate. Intermolecular palmitoyl transfer, however, remained a tangible problem, and may lead to erroneous reporting of in vivo N-palmitoylation. It was found that addition of the MS-compatible detergent RapiGest could significantly inhibit intermolecular palmitoyl transfer, as well as thioester hydrolysis and DTT-induced thioester cleavage. Finally, palmitoyl transfer from the cysteine residue to the peptide N-terminus can also occur in the gas phase, during collision-induced dissociation, and result in false identification of N-palmitoylation. Therefore, one must be careful with both sample preparation and interpretation of tandem mass spectra in the study of N-palmitoylation.

  19. Organic cleanliness of the Mars Science Laboratory sample transfer chain.

    PubMed

    Blakkolb, B; Logan, C; Jandura, L; Okon, A; Anderson, M; Katz, I; Aveni, G; Brown, K; Chung, S; Ferraro, N; Limonadi, D; Melko, J; Mennella, J; Yavrouian, A

    2014-07-01

    One of the primary science goals of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Rover, Curiosity, is the detection of organics in Mars rock and regolith. To achieve this, the Curiosity rover includes a robotic sampling system that acquires rock and regolith samples and delivers it to the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument on board the rover. In order to provide confidence that any significant organics detection result was Martian and not terrestrial in origin, a requirement was levied on the flight system (i.e., all sources minus the SAM instrument) to impart no more than 36 parts per billion (ppb by weight) of total reduced carbon terrestrial contamination to any sample transferred to the SAM instrument. This very clean level was achieved by a combination of a rigorous contamination control program on the project, and then using the first collected samples for a "dilution cleaning" campaign of the sample chain prior to delivering a sample to the SAM instrument. Direct cleanliness assays of the sample-contacting and other Flight System surfaces during pre-launch processing were used as inputs to determine the number of dilution cleaning samples needed once on Mars, to enable delivery of suitably clean samples to the SAM experiment. Taking into account contaminant redistribution during launch thorough landing of the MSL on Mars, the amount of residue present on the sampling hardware prior to the time of first dilution cleaning sample acquisition was estimated to be 60 ng/cm(2) on exposed outer surfaces of the sampling hardware and 20 ng/cm(2) on internal sample contacting surfaces; residues consisting mainly of aliphatic hydrocarbons and esters. After three dilution cleaning samples, estimated in-sample contamination level for the first regolith sample delivered to the SAM instrument at the Gale Crater "Rocknest" site was bounded at ≤10 ppb total organic carbon. A Project decision to forego ejecting the dilution cleaning sample and instead transfer the first drill

  20. Organic cleanliness of the Mars Science Laboratory sample transfer chain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blakkolb, B.; Logan, C.; Jandura, L.; Okon, A.; Anderson, M.; Katz, I.; Aveni, G.; Brown, K.; Chung, S.; Ferraro, N.; Limonadi, D.; Melko, J.; Mennella, J.; Yavrouian, A.

    2014-07-01

    One of the primary science goals of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Rover, Curiosity, is the detection of organics in Mars rock and regolith. To achieve this, the Curiosity rover includes a robotic sampling system that acquires rock and regolith samples and delivers it to the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument on board the rover. In order to provide confidence that any significant organics detection result was Martian and not terrestrial in origin, a requirement was levied on the flight system (i.e., all sources minus the SAM instrument) to impart no more than 36 parts per billion (ppb by weight) of total reduced carbon terrestrial contamination to any sample transferred to the SAM instrument. This very clean level was achieved by a combination of a rigorous contamination control program on the project, and then using the first collected samples for a "dilution cleaning" campaign of the sample chain prior to delivering a sample to the SAM instrument. Direct cleanliness assays of the sample-contacting and other Flight System surfaces during pre-launch processing were used as inputs to determine the number of dilution cleaning samples needed once on Mars, to enable delivery of suitably clean samples to the SAM experiment. Taking into account contaminant redistribution during launch thorough landing of the MSL on Mars, the amount of residue present on the sampling hardware prior to the time of first dilution cleaning sample acquisition was estimated to be 60 ng/cm2 on exposed outer surfaces of the sampling hardware and 20 ng/cm2 on internal sample contacting surfaces; residues consisting mainly of aliphatic hydrocarbons and esters. After three dilution cleaning samples, estimated in-sample contamination level for the first regolith sample delivered to the SAM instrument at the Gale Crater "Rocknest" site was bounded at ≤10 ppb total organic carbon. A Project decision to forego ejecting the dilution cleaning sample and instead transfer the first drill

  1. Test report for the Sample Transfer Canister system

    SciTech Connect

    Flanagan, B.D.

    1998-03-04

    The Sample Transfer Canister will be used by the Waste Receiving and Processing Facility (WRAP) for the transport of small quantity liquid samples that meet the definition of a limited quantity radioactive material, and may also be corrosive and/or flammable. Transport of the system will typically be north of the Wye Barricade between WRAP and the 222-S Laboratory. The samples are intended to conform to the US Department of Transportation (DOT) regulation 49 CFR 1 73.4, ``Exceptions for small quantities.`` The regulations require prototype testing of the package to demonstrate the effectiveness of the packaging system. The test procedure consisted of one 24-hour compression test and five drop tests of various orientations onto an unyielding drop pad. The testing of the Sample Transfer Canister System was performed between February 16, 1998 and February 25, 1998. The results of the testing concluded that the Sample Transfer Canister System successfully met the testing requirements with certain modifications to the original system. The modifications included replacing the original eight flange screws which were cold rolled 316 stainless steel with greater strength grade 8 high carbon-carbon steel screws, replacing the initial two glass receptacles with a better performing single glass receptacle which proved not to leak during testing, and adding more bubble wrap as extra padding.

  2. Evaluation of automated streamwater sampling during storm events for total mercury analysis.

    PubMed

    Riscassi, Ami L; Converse, Amber D; Hokanson, Kelly J; Scanlon, Todd M

    2010-10-06

    Understanding the processes by which mercury is mobilized from soil to stream is currently limited by a lack of observations during high-flow events, when the majority of this transport occurs. An automated technique to collect stream water for unfiltered total mercury (HgT) analysis was systematically evaluated in a series of laboratory experiments. Potential sources of error investigated were 1) carry-over effects associated with sequential sampling, 2) deposition of HgT into empty bottles prior to sampling, and 3) deposition to or evasion from samples prior to retrieval. Contamination from carry-over effects was minimal (<2%) and HgT deposition to open bottles was negligible. Potentially greater errors are associated with evasive losses of HgT from uncapped samples, with higher temperatures leading to greater evasion. These evasive losses were found to take place primarily within the first eight hours. HgT associated with particulate material is much less prone to evasion than HgT in dissolved form. A field test conducted during a high-flow event confirmed unfiltered HgT concentrations sampled with an automated system were comparable to those taken manually, as the mean absolute difference between automated and manual samples (10%) was similar to the mean difference between duplicate grab samples (9%). Results from this study have demonstrated that a standard automated sampler, retrofitted with appropriately cleaned fluoropolymer tubing and glass bottles, can effectively be used for collection of streamwater during high-flow events for low-level mercury analysis.

  3. Genomic Data Quality Impacts Automated Detection of Lateral Gene Transfer in Fungi

    PubMed Central

    Dupont, Pierre-Yves; Cox, Murray P.

    2017-01-01

    Lateral gene transfer (LGT, also known as horizontal gene transfer), an atypical mechanism of transferring genes between species, has almost become the default explanation for genes that display an unexpected composition or phylogeny. Numerous methods of detecting LGT events all rely on two fundamental strategies: primary structure composition or gene tree/species tree comparisons. Discouragingly, the results of these different approaches rarely coincide. With the wealth of genome data now available, detection of laterally transferred genes is increasingly being attempted in large uncurated eukaryotic datasets. However, detection methods depend greatly on the quality of the underlying genomic data, which are typically complex for eukaryotes. Furthermore, given the automated nature of genomic data collection, it is typically impractical to manually verify all protein or gene models, orthology predictions, and multiple sequence alignments, requiring researchers to accept a substantial margin of error in their datasets. Using a test case comprising plant-associated genomes across the fungal kingdom, this study reveals that composition- and phylogeny-based methods have little statistical power to detect laterally transferred genes. In particular, phylogenetic methods reveal extreme levels of topological variation in fungal gene trees, the vast majority of which show departures from the canonical species tree. Therefore, it is inherently challenging to detect LGT events in typical eukaryotic genomes. This finding is in striking contrast to the large number of claims for laterally transferred genes in eukaryotic species that routinely appear in the literature, and questions how many of these proposed examples are statistically well supported. PMID:28235827

  4. Current status and future prospects of an automated sample exchange system PAM for protein crystallography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hiraki, M.; Yamada, Y.; Chavas, L. M. G.; Matsugaki, N.; Igarashi, N.; Wakatsuki, S.

    2013-03-01

    To achieve fully-automated and/or remote data collection in high-throughput X-ray experiments, the Structural Biology Research Centre at the Photon Factory (PF) has installed PF automated mounting system (PAM) for sample exchange robots at PF macromolecular crystallography beamlines BL-1A, BL-5A, BL-17A, AR-NW12A and AR-NE3A. We are upgrading the experimental systems, including the PAM for stable and efficient operation. To prevent human error in automated data collection, we installed a two-dimensional barcode reader for identification of the cassettes and sample pins. Because no liquid nitrogen pipeline in the PF experimental hutch is installed, the users commonly add liquid nitrogen using a small Dewar. To address this issue, an automated liquid nitrogen filling system that links a 100-liter tank to the robot Dewar has been installed on the PF macromolecular beamline. Here we describe this new implementation, as well as future prospects.

  5. Infrared Laser Ablation Sample Transfer for MALDI and Electrospray

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Sung-Gun; Murray, Kermit King

    2011-08-01

    We have used an infrared laser to ablate materials under ambient conditions that were captured in solvent droplets. The droplets were either deposited on a MALDI target for off-line analysis by MALDI time-of-flight mass spectrometry or flow-injected into a nanoelectrospray source of an ion trap mass spectrometer. An infrared optical parametric oscillator (OPO) laser system at 2.94 μm wavelength and approximately 1 mJ pulse energy was focused onto samples for ablation at atmospheric pressure. The ablated material was captured in a solvent droplet 1-2 mm in diameter that was suspended from a silica capillary a few millimeters above the sample target. Once the sample was transferred to the droplet by ablation, the droplet was deposited on a MALDI target. A saturated matrix solution was added to the deposited sample, or in some cases, the suspended capture droplet contained the matrix. Peptide and protein standards were used to assess the effects of the number of IR laser ablation shots, sample to droplet distance, capture droplet size, droplet solvent, and laser pulse energy. Droplet collected samples were also injected into a nanoelectrospray source of an ion trap mass spectrometer with a 500 nL injection loop. It is estimated that pmol quantities of material were transferred to the droplet with an efficiency of approximately 1%. The direct analysis of biological fluids for off-line MALDI and electrospray was demonstrated with blood, milk, and egg. The implications of this IR ablation sample transfer approach for ambient imaging are discussed.

  6. A fully automated plasma protein precipitation sample preparation method for LC-MS/MS bioanalysis.

    PubMed

    Ma, Ji; Shi, Jianxia; Le, Hoa; Cho, Robert; Huang, Judy Chi-jou; Miao, Shichang; Wong, Bradley K

    2008-02-01

    This report describes the development and validation of a robust robotic system that fully integrates all peripheral devices needed for the automated preparation of plasma samples by protein precipitation. The liquid handling system consisted of a Tecan Freedom EVO 200 liquid handling platform equipped with an 8-channel liquid handling arm, two robotic plate-handling arms, and two plate shakers. Important additional components integrated into the platform were a robotic temperature-controlled centrifuge, a plate sealer, and a plate seal piercing station. These enabled unattended operation starting from a stock solution of the test compound, a set of test plasma samples and associated reagents. The stock solution of the test compound was used to prepare plasma calibration and quality control samples. Once calibration and quality control samples were prepared, precipitation of plasma proteins was achieved by addition of three volumes of acetonitrile. Integration of the peripheral devices allowed automated sequential completion of the centrifugation, plate sealing, piercing and supernatant transferral steps. The method produced a sealed, injection-ready 96-well plate of plasma extracts. Accuracy and precision of the automated system were satisfactory for the intended use: intra-day and the inter-day precision were excellent (C.V.<5%), while the intra-day and inter-day accuracies were acceptable (relative error<8%). The flexibility of the platform was sufficient to accommodate pharmacokinetic studies of different numbers of animals and time points. To the best of our knowledge, this represents the first complete automation of the protein precipitation method for plasma sample analysis.

  7. Automated semiquantitative direct-current-arc spectrographic analysis of eight argonne premium coal ash samples

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Skeen, C.J.; Libby, B.J.; Crandell, W.B.

    1990-01-01

    The automated semiquantitative direct-current-arc spectre-graphic method was used to analyze 62 elements in eight Argonne Premium Coal Ash samples. All eight coal ash samples were analyzed in triplicate to verify precision and accuracy of the method. The precision for most elements was within ??10%. The accuracy of this method is limited to +50% or -33% because of the nature of the standard curves for each of the elements. Adjustments to the computer program were implemented to account for unique matrix interferences in these particular coal ash samples.

  8. Automated sampling system for the analysis of amino acids using microfluidic capillary electrophoresis.

    PubMed

    Xu, Zhang-Run; Lan, Yue; Fan, Xiao-Feng; Li, Qi

    2009-04-30

    An improved automated continuous sample introduction system for microfluidic capillary electrophoresis (CE) is described. A sample plate was designed into gear-shaped and was fixed onto the shaft of a step motor. Twenty slotted reservoirs for containing samples and working electrolytes were fabricated on the "gear tooth" of the plate. A single 7.5-cm long Teflon AF-coated silica capillary serves as separation channel, sampling probe, as well as liquid-core waveguide (LCW) for light transmission. Platinum layer deposited on the capillary tip serves as the electrode. Automated continuous sample introduction was achieved by scanning the capillary tip through the slots of reservoirs. The sample was introduced into capillary and separated immediately in the capillary with only about 2-nL gross sample consumption. The laser-induced fluorescence (LIF) method with LCW technique was used for detecting fluorescein isothiocyanate (FITC)-labeled amino acids. With electric-field strength of 320 V/cm for injection and separation, and 1.0-s sample injection time, a mixture of FITC-labeled arginine and leucine was separated with a throughput of 60/h and a carryover of 2.7%.

  9. Development of a Miniature Mass Spectrometer and an Automated Detector for Sampling Explosive Materials

    PubMed Central

    Hashimoto, Yuichiro

    2017-01-01

    The development of a robust ionization source using the counter-flow APCI, miniature mass spectrometer, and an automated sampling system for detecting explosives are described. These development efforts using mass spectrometry were made in order to improve the efficiencies of on-site detection in areas such as security, environmental, and industrial applications. A development team, including the author, has struggled for nearly 20 years to enhance the robustness and reduce the size of mass spectrometers to meet the requirements needed for on-site applications. This article focuses on the recent results related to the detection of explosive materials where automated particle sampling using a cyclone concentrator permitted the inspection time to be successfully reduced to 3 s. PMID:28337396

  10. Comparison of manual and automated nucleic acid extraction from whole-blood samples.

    PubMed

    Riemann, Kathrin; Adamzik, Michael; Frauenrath, Stefan; Egensperger, Rupert; Schmid, Kurt W; Brockmeyer, Norbert H; Siffert, Winfried

    2007-01-01

    Nucleic acid extraction and purification from whole blood is a routine application in many laboratories. Automation of this procedure promises standardized sample treatment, a low error rate, and avoidance of contamination. The performance of the BioRobot M48 (Qiagen) and the manual QIAmp DNA Blood Mini Kit (Qiagen) was compared for the extraction of DNA from whole blood. The concentration and purity of the extracted DNAs were determined by spectrophotometry. Analytical sensitivity was assessed by common PCR and genotyping techniques. The quantity and quality of the generated DNAs were slightly higher using the manual extraction method. The results of downstream applications were comparable to each other. Amplification of high-molecular-weight PCR fragments, genotyping by restriction digest, and pyrosequencing were successful for all samples. No cross-contamination could be detected. While automated DNA extraction requires significantly less hands-on time, it is slightly more expensive than the manual extraction method.

  11. Non-uniform Sampling and J-UNIO Automation for Efficient Protein NMR Structure Determination

    PubMed Central

    Didenko, Tatiana; Proudfoot, Andrew; Dutta, Samit Kumar; Serrano, Pedro; Wüthrich, Kurt

    2015-01-01

    High-resolution structure determination of small proteins in solution is one of the big assets of NMR spectroscopy in structural biology. Improvements in efficiency of NMR structure determination by advances in NMR experiments and automation of data handling therefore attracts continued interest. Here, non-uniform sampling (NUS) of 3D heteronuclear-resolved [1H,1H]-NOESY data yielded two- to three-fold savings of instrument time for structure determinations of soluble proteins. With the 152-residue protein NP_372339.1 from Staphylococcus aureus and the 71-residue protein NP_346341.1 from Streptococcus pneumonia we show that high-quality structures can be obtained with NUS NMR data, which are equally well amenable to robust automated analysis as the corresponding uniformly sampled data. PMID:26227870

  12. Development of automated preparation system for isotopocule analysis of N2O in various air samples

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Toyoda, Sakae; Yoshida, Naohiro

    2016-05-01

    Nitrous oxide (N2O), an increasingly abundant greenhouse gas in the atmosphere, is the most important stratospheric ozone-depleting gas of this century. Natural abundance ratios of isotopocules of N2O, NNO molecules substituted with stable isotopes of nitrogen and oxygen, are a promising index of various sources or production pathways of N2O and of its sink or decomposition pathways. Several automated methods have been reported to improve the analytical precision for the isotopocule ratio of atmospheric N2O and to reduce the labor necessary for complicated sample preparation procedures related to mass spectrometric analysis. However, no method accommodates flask samples with limited volume or pressure. Here we present an automated preconcentration system which offers flexibility with respect to the available gas volume, pressure, and N2O concentration. The shortest processing time for a single analysis of typical atmospheric sample is 40 min. Precision values of isotopocule ratio analysis are < 0.1 ‰ for δ15Nbulk (average abundances of 14N15N16O and 15N14N16O relative to 14N14N16O), < 0.2 ‰ for δ18O (relative abundance of 14N14N18O), and < 0.5 ‰ for site preference (SP; difference between relative abundance of 14N15N16O and 15N14N16O). This precision is comparable to that of other automated systems, but better than that of our previously reported manual measurement system.

  13. An instrument for automated purification of nucleic acids from contaminated forensic samples.

    PubMed

    Broemeling, David J; Pel, Joel; Gunn, Dylan C; Mai, Laura; Thompson, Jason D; Poon, Hiron; Marziali, Andre

    2008-02-01

    Forensic crime scene sample analysis, by its nature, often deals with samples in which there are low amounts of nucleic acids, on substrates that often lead to inhibition of subsequent enzymatic reactions such as PCR amplification for STR profiling. Common substrates include denim from blue jeans, which yields indigo dye as a PCR inhibitor, and soil, which yields humic substances as inhibitors. These inhibitors frequently co-extract with nucleic acids in standard column or bead-based preps, leading to frequent failure of STR profiling. We present a novel instrument for DNA purification of forensic samples that is capable of highly effective concentration of nucleic acids from soil particulates, fabric, and other complex samples including solid components. The novel concentration process, known as SCODA, is inherently selective for long charged polymers such as DNA, and therefore is able to effectively reject known contaminants. We present an automated sample preparation instrument based on this process, and preliminary results based on mock forensic samples.

  14. Path Sampling Methods for Enzymatic Quantum Particle Transfer Reactions.

    PubMed

    Dzierlenga, M W; Varga, M J; Schwartz, S D

    2016-01-01

    The mechanisms of enzymatic reactions are studied via a host of computational techniques. While previous methods have been used successfully, many fail to incorporate the full dynamical properties of enzymatic systems. This can lead to misleading results in cases where enzyme motion plays a significant role in the reaction coordinate, which is especially relevant in particle transfer reactions where nuclear tunneling may occur. In this chapter, we outline previous methods, as well as discuss newly developed dynamical methods to interrogate mechanisms of enzymatic particle transfer reactions. These new methods allow for the calculation of free energy barriers and kinetic isotope effects (KIEs) with the incorporation of quantum effects through centroid molecular dynamics (CMD) and the full complement of enzyme dynamics through transition path sampling (TPS). Recent work, summarized in this chapter, applied the method for calculation of free energy barriers to reaction in lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) and yeast alcohol dehydrogenase (YADH). We found that tunneling plays an insignificant role in YADH but plays a more significant role in LDH, though not dominant over classical transfer. Additionally, we summarize the application of a TPS algorithm for the calculation of reaction rates in tandem with CMD to calculate the primary H/D KIE of YADH from first principles. We found that the computationally obtained KIE is within the margin of error of experimentally determined KIEs and corresponds to the KIE of particle transfer in the enzyme. These methods provide new ways to investigate enzyme mechanism with the inclusion of protein and quantum dynamics.

  15. Situ soil sampling probe system with heated transfer line

    DOEpatents

    Robbat, Jr., Albert

    2002-01-01

    The present invention is directed both to an improved in situ penetrometer probe and to a heated, flexible transfer line. The line and probe may be implemented together in a penetrometer system in which the transfer line is used to connect the probe to a collector/analyzer at the surface. The probe comprises a heater that controls a temperature of a geologic medium surrounding the probe. At least one carrier gas port and vapor collection port are located on an external side wall of the probe. The carrier gas port provides a carrier gas into the geologic medium, and the collection port captures vapors from the geologic medium for analysis. In the transfer line, a flexible collection line that conveys a collected fluid, i.e., vapor, sample to a collector/analyzer. A flexible carrier gas line conveys a carrier gas to facilitate the collection of the sample. A system heating the collection line is also provided. Preferably the collection line is electrically conductive so that an electrical power source can generate a current through it so that the internal resistance generates heat.

  16. Automated Prediction of Catalytic Mechanism and Rate Law Using Graph-Based Reaction Path Sampling.

    PubMed

    Habershon, Scott

    2016-04-12

    In a recent article [ J. Chem. Phys. 2015 , 143 , 094106 ], we introduced a novel graph-based sampling scheme which can be used to generate chemical reaction paths in many-atom systems in an efficient and highly automated manner. The main goal of this work is to demonstrate how this approach, when combined with direct kinetic modeling, can be used to determine the mechanism and phenomenological rate law of a complex catalytic cycle, namely cobalt-catalyzed hydroformylation of ethene. Our graph-based sampling scheme generates 31 unique chemical products and 32 unique chemical reaction pathways; these sampled structures and reaction paths enable automated construction of a kinetic network model of the catalytic system when combined with density functional theory (DFT) calculations of free energies and resultant transition-state theory rate constants. Direct simulations of this kinetic network across a range of initial reactant concentrations enables determination of both the reaction mechanism and the associated rate law in an automated fashion, without the need for either presupposing a mechanism or making steady-state approximations in kinetic analysis. Most importantly, we find that the reaction mechanism which emerges from these simulations is exactly that originally proposed by Heck and Breslow; furthermore, the simulated rate law is also consistent with previous experimental and computational studies, exhibiting a complex dependence on carbon monoxide pressure. While the inherent errors of using DFT simulations to model chemical reactivity limit the quantitative accuracy of our calculated rates, this work confirms that our automated simulation strategy enables direct analysis of catalytic mechanisms from first principles.

  17. RoboDiff: combining a sample changer and goniometer for highly automated macromolecular crystallography experiments

    PubMed Central

    Nurizzo, Didier; Bowler, Matthew W.; Caserotto, Hugo; Dobias, Fabien; Giraud, Thierry; Surr, John; Guichard, Nicolas; Papp, Gergely; Guijarro, Matias; Mueller-Dieckmann, Christoph; Flot, David; McSweeney, Sean; Cipriani, Florent; Theveneau, Pascal; Leonard, Gordon A.

    2016-01-01

    Automation of the mounting of cryocooled samples is now a feature of the majority of beamlines dedicated to macromolecular crystallography (MX). Robotic sample changers have been developed over many years, with the latest designs increasing capacity, reliability and speed. Here, the development of a new sample changer deployed at the ESRF beamline MASSIF-1 (ID30A-1), based on an industrial six-axis robot, is described. The device, named RoboDiff, includes a high-capacity dewar, acts as both a sample changer and a high-accuracy goniometer, and has been designed for completely unattended sample mounting and diffraction data collection. This aim has been achieved using a high level of diagnostics at all steps of the process from mounting and characterization to data collection. The RoboDiff has been in service on the fully automated endstation MASSIF-1 at the ESRF since September 2014 and, at the time of writing, has processed more than 20 000 samples completely automatically. PMID:27487827

  18. Electrochemical pesticide detection with AutoDip--a portable platform for automation of crude sample analyses.

    PubMed

    Drechsel, Lisa; Schulz, Martin; von Stetten, Felix; Moldovan, Carmen; Zengerle, Roland; Paust, Nils

    2015-02-07

    Lab-on-a-chip devices hold promise for automation of complex workflows from sample to answer with minimal consumption of reagents in portable devices. However, complex, inhomogeneous samples as they occur in environmental or food analysis may block microchannels and thus often cause malfunction of the system. Here we present the novel AutoDip platform which is based on the movement of a solid phase through the reagents and sample instead of transporting a sequence of reagents through a fixed solid phase. A ball-pen mechanism operated by an external actuator automates unit operations such as incubation and washing by consecutively dipping the solid phase into the corresponding liquids. The platform is applied to electrochemical detection of organophosphorus pesticides in real food samples using an acetylcholinesterase (AChE) biosensor. Minimal sample preparation and an integrated reagent pre-storage module hold promise for easy handling of the assay. Detection of the pesticide chlorpyrifos-oxon (CPO) spiked into apple samples at concentrations of 10(-7) M has been demonstrated. This concentration is below the maximum residue level for chlorpyrifos in apples defined by the European Commission.

  19. Automated combustion accelerator mass spectrometry for the analysis of biomedical samples in the low attomole range.

    PubMed

    van Duijn, Esther; Sandman, Hugo; Grossouw, Dimitri; Mocking, Johannes A J; Coulier, Leon; Vaes, Wouter H J

    2014-08-05

    The increasing role of accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) in biomedical research necessitates modernization of the traditional sample handling process. AMS was originally developed and used for carbon dating, therefore focusing on a very high precision but with a comparably low sample throughput. Here, we describe the combination of automated sample combustion with an elemental analyzer (EA) online coupled to an AMS via a dedicated interface. This setup allows direct radiocarbon measurements for over 70 samples daily by AMS. No sample processing is required apart from the pipetting of the sample into a tin foil cup, which is placed in the carousel of the EA. In our system, up to 200 AMS analyses are performed automatically without the need for manual interventions. We present results on the direct total (14)C count measurements in <2 μL human plasma samples. The method shows linearity over a range of 0.65-821 mBq/mL, with a lower limit of quantification of 0.65 mBq/mL (corresponding to 0.67 amol for acetaminophen). At these extremely low levels of activity, it becomes important to quantify plasma specific carbon percentages. This carbon percentage is automatically generated upon combustion of a sample on the EA. Apparent advantages of the present approach include complete omission of sample preparation (reduced hands-on time) and fully automated sample analysis. These improvements clearly stimulate the standard incorporation of microtracer research in the drug development process. In combination with the particularly low sample volumes required and extreme sensitivity, AMS strongly improves its position as a bioanalysis method.

  20. Capturing temporal variation in phosphorus dynamics in groundwater dominated rivers using automated high-frequency sampling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bieroza, M. Z.; Heathwaite, A. L.; Mullinger, N. J.; Keenan, P. O.

    2012-04-01

    High-frequency river water quality monitoring provides detailed hydrochemical information on the time scale of hydrologic response. Several studies (Kirchner et al., 2004; Johnes, 2007; Cassidy and Jordan, 2011) have shown previously that coarse sampling approaches fail to quantify nutrient and sediment loads and to capture the fine structure of water quality dynamics correctly. A robust analysis of high-frequency nutrient and water quality time series can present a complex conceptual, analytical and computational problem. High-frequency nutrient monitoring provides new evidence of processes and patterns that could not be observed previously using standard coarse resolution sampling schemes. However, to fully utilise the wealth of information contained in high-frequency nutrient data, we need to address the following questions: how to detect complex coupling patterns and processes in high-resolution flow-nutrients data, how do these patterns and processes change throughout the period of observation, and how to distinguish noise signals from an evidence of real processes (Harris and Heathwaite, 2005). Here, hourly measurements of total phosphorus (TP), soluble reactive phosphorus (SRP) and turbidity were carried out using bank side analysers to study the biogeochemical response of a 54 km2 catchment of the River Leith, a tributary of the River Eden (Cumbria, UK). A remote automated mobile lab facilitates real-time high-frequency nutrient and water quality monitoring, with no time delay between collection and analysis of the reactive elements. The objectives of this study were two-fold: first to investigate the intrinsic complexity of the temporal relationship between phosphorus fractions (SRP, TP), turbidity and continuous hydrometric time series and secondly to investigate the possibilities of missing high-frequency phosphorus data infilling using continuous hydrometric time series. Complex non-linear relationships between flow, TP and SRP, turbidity were observed

  1. Development of an automated data processing method for sample to sample comparison of seized methamphetamines.

    PubMed

    Choe, Sanggil; Lee, Jaesin; Choi, Hyeyoung; Park, Yujin; Lee, Heesang; Pyo, Jaesung; Jo, Jiyeong; Park, Yonghoon; Choi, Hwakyung; Kim, Suncheun

    2012-11-30

    The information about the sources of supply, trafficking routes, distribution patterns and conspiracy links can be obtained from methamphetamine profiling. The precursor and synthetic method for the clandestine manufacture can be estimated from the analysis of minor impurities contained in methamphetamine. Also, the similarity between samples can be evaluated using the peaks that appear in chromatograms. In South Korea, methamphetamine was the most popular drug but the total seized amount of methamphetamine whole through the country was very small. Therefore, it would be more important to find the links between samples than the other uses of methamphetamine profiling. Many Asian countries including Japan and South Korea have been using the method developed by National Research Institute of Police Science of Japan. The method used gas chromatography-flame ionization detector (GC-FID), DB-5 column and four internal standards. It was developed to increase the amount of impurities and minimize the amount of methamphetamine. After GC-FID analysis, the raw data have to be processed. The data processing steps are very complex and require a lot of time and effort. In this study, Microsoft Visual Basic Application (VBA) modules were developed to handle these data processing steps. This module collected the results from the data into an Excel file and then corrected the retention time shift and response deviation generated from the sample preparation and instruments analysis. The developed modules were tested for their performance using 10 samples from 5 different cases. The processed results were analyzed with Pearson correlation coefficient for similarity assessment and the correlation coefficient of the two samples from the same case was more than 0.99. When the modules were applied to 131 seized methamphetamine samples, four samples from two different cases were found to have the common origin and the chromatograms of the four samples were appeared visually identical

  2. Automated sample preparation facilitated by PhyNexus MEA purification system for oligosaccharide mapping of glycoproteins.

    PubMed

    Prater, Bradley D; Anumula, Kalyan R; Hutchins, Jeff T

    2007-10-15

    A reproducible high-throughput sample cleanup method for fluorescent oligosaccharide mapping of glycoproteins is described. Oligosaccharides are released from glycoproteins using PNGase F and labeled with 2-aminobenzoic acid (anthranilic acid, AA). A PhyNexus MEA system was adapted for automated isolation of the fluorescently labeled oligosaccharides from the reaction mixture prior to mapping by HPLC. The oligosaccharide purification uses a normal-phase polyamide resin (DPA-6S) in custom-made pipette tips. The resin volume, wash, and elution steps involved were optimized to obtain high recovery of oligosaccharides with the least amount of contaminating free fluorescent dye in the shortest amount of time. The automated protocol for sample cleanup eliminated all manual manipulations with a recycle time of 23 min. We have reduced the amount of excess AA by 150-fold, allowing quantitative oligosaccharide mapping from as little as 500 ng digested recombinant immunoglobulin G (rIgG). This low sample requirement allows early selection of a cell line with desired characteristics (e.g., oligosaccharide profile and high specific productivity) for the production of glycoprotein drugs. In addition, the use of Tecan or another robotic platform in conjunction with this method should allow the cleanup of 96 samples in 23 min, a significant decrease in the amount of time currently required to process such a large number of samples.

  3. Application of existing technology to meet increasing demands for automated sample handling.

    PubMed

    Chow, A T; Kegelman, J E; Kohli, C; McCabe, D D; Moore, J F

    1990-09-01

    As the clinical laboratory advances toward total automation, the marketplace is now demanding more-efficient sample-handling systems. These demands have arisen over a relatively short period of time, in part because of heightened concern over laboratory safety and the resulting manpower shortages. Adding sample-handling capabilities to existing instrumentation is often a challenge, because usually mechanical or system constraints are present that interfere. This challenge has been overcome in the DuPont Sample Management System (SMS), a second-generation general chemistry analyzer that incorporates the latest barcode and computer-interfacing technology. The development of the SMS system relies heavily on recent advances in technology, e.g., software modeling and computer-aided design. The SMS system includes a barcode scanner based on "charge-coupled device" technology, a random-access sample wheel, and new software that oversees the various functions.

  4. Direct determination of selenium in serum by electrothermal atomic absorption spectrometry using automated ultrasonic slurry sampling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Wen-Kang; Yen, Cheng-Chieh; Wei, Bai-Luh; Hu, Chao-Chin; Yu, Jya-Jyun; Chung, Chien; Kuo, Sheng-Chu

    1998-01-01

    Selenium concentration in body fluids is a good index to establish human selenium status. This work discusses the determination of selenium in serum by ETAAS using longitudinal Zeeman-effect background correction and combining the use of automated slurry sampling. The standard reference materials bovine serum (NIST, SRM 1598) and second-generation biological freeze-dried human serum are analyzed to verify the accuracy and precision of this technique. The direct method proposed in this study is used for the determination of selenium in human serum collected from healthy people of 19-25 years. The average accuracy values of certified reference serum samples and the recovery values of spiked samples indicate this method to be an efficient and rapid technique for determining selenium in biological samples.

  5. Detection of Orbital Debris Collision Risks for the Automated Transfer Vehicle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Peret, L.; Legendre, P.; Delavault, S.; Martin, T.

    2007-01-01

    In this paper, we present a general collision risk assessment method, which has been applied through numerical simulations to the Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV) case. During ATV ascent towards the International Space Station, close approaches between the ATV and objects of the USSTRACOM catalog will be monitored through collision rosk assessment. Usually, collision risk assessment relies on an exclusion volume or a probability threshold method. Probability methods are more effective than exclusion volumes but require accurate covariance data. In this work, we propose to use a criterion defined by an adaptive exclusion area. This criterion does not require any probability calculation but is more effective than exclusion volume methods as demonstrated by our numerical experiments. The results of these studies, when confirmed and finalized, will be used for the ATV operations.

  6. Automated aerosol Raman spectrometer for semi-continuous sampling of atmospheric aerosol

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doughty, David C.; Hill, Steven C.

    2017-02-01

    Raman spectroscopy (RS) is useful in characterizing atmospheric aerosol. It is not commonly used in studying ambient particles partly because automated instrumentation for aerosol RS has not been available. Battelle (Columbus, Ohio, USA) has developed the Resource Effective Bioidentification System (REBS) for automated detection of airborne bioagents based on RS. We use a version of the REBS that measures Raman spectra of one set of particles while the next set of particles is collected from air, then moves the newly collected particles to the analysis region and repeats. Here we investigate the use of the REBS as the core of a general-purpose automated Aerosol Raman Spectrometer (ARS) for atmospheric applications. This REBS-based ARS can be operated as a line-scanning Raman imaging spectrometer. Spectra measured by this ARS for single particles made of polystyrene, black carbon, and several other materials are clearly distinguishable. Raman spectra from a 15 min ambient sample (approximately 35-50 particles, 158 spectra) were analyzed using a hierarchical clustering method to find that the cluster spectra are consistent with soot, inorganic aerosol, and other organic compounds. The ARS ran unattended, collecting atmospheric aerosol and measuring spectra for a 7 hr period at 15-min intervals. A total of 32,718 spectra were measured; 5892 exceeded a threshold and were clustered during this time. The number of particles exhibiting the D-G bands of amorphous carbon plotted vs time (at 15-min intervals) increases during the morning commute, then decreases. This data illustrates the potential of the ARS to measure thousands of time resolved aerosol Raman spectra in the ambient atmosphere over the course of several hours. The capability of this ARS for automated measurements of Raman spectra should lead to more extensive RS-based studies of atmospheric aerosols.

  7. Mechanical Alteration And Contamination Issues In Automated Subsurface Sample Acquisition And Handling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Glass, B. J.; Cannon, H.; Bonaccorsi, R.; Zacny, K.

    2006-12-01

    The Drilling Automation for Mars Exploration (DAME) project's purpose is to develop and field-test drilling automation and robotics technologies for projected use in missions in the 2011-15 period. DAME includes control of the drilling hardware, and state estimation of both the hardware and the lithography being drilled and the state of the hole. A sister drill was constructed for the Mars Analog Río Tinto Experiment (MARTE) project and demonstrated automated core handling and string changeout in 2005 drilling tests at Rio Tinto, Spain. DAME focused instead on the problem of drill control while actively drilling while not getting stuck. Together, the DAME and MARTE projects demonstrate a fully automated robotic drilling capability, including hands-off drilling, adjustment to different strata and downhole conditions, recovery from drilling faults (binding, choking, etc.), drill string changeouts, core acquisition and removal, and sample handling and conveyance to in-situ instruments. The 2006 top-level goal of DAME drilling in-situ tests was to verify and demonstrate a capability for hands-off automated drilling, at an Arctic Mars-analog site. There were three sets of 2006 test goals, all of which were exceeded during the July 2006 field season. The first was to demonstrate the recognition, while drilling, of at least three of the six known major fault modes for the DAME planetary-prototype drill, and to employ the correct recovery or safing procedure in response. The second set of 2006 goals was to operate for three or more hours autonomously, hands-off. And the third 2006 goal was to exceed 3m depth into the frozen breccia and permafrost with the DAME drill (it had not gone further than 2.2m previously). Five of six faults were detected and corrected, there were 43 hours of hands-off drilling (including a 4 hour sequence with no human presence nearby), and 3.2m was the total depth. And ground truth drilling used small commercial drilling equipment in parallel in

  8. SAMPL4 & DOCK3.7: Lessons for automated docking procedures

    PubMed Central

    Coleman, Ryan G.; Sterling, Teague; Weiss, Dahlia R.

    2014-01-01

    The SAMPL4 challenges were used to test current automated methods for solvation energy, virtual screening, pose and affinity prediction of the molecular docking pipeline DOCK 3.7. Additionally, first-order models of binding affinity were proposed as milestones for any method predicting binding affinity. Several important discoveries about the molecular docking software were made during the challenge: 1) Solvation energies of ligands were five-fold worse than any other method used in SAMPL4, including methods that were similarly fast, 2) HIV Integrase is a challenging target, but automated docking on the correct allosteric site performed well in terms of virtual screening and pose prediction (compared to other methods) but affinity prediction, as expected, was very poor, 3) Molecular docking grid sizes can be very important, serious errors were discovered with default settings that have been adjusted for all future work. Overall, lessons from SAMPL4 suggest many changes to molecular docking tools, not just DOCK 3.7, that could improve the state of the art. Future difficulties and projects will be discussed. PMID:24515818

  9. Automated processing of forensic casework samples using robotic workstations equipped with nondisposable tips: contamination prevention.

    PubMed

    Frégeau, Chantal J; Lett, C Marc; Elliott, Jim; Yensen, Craig; Fourney, Ron M

    2008-05-01

    An automated process has been developed for the analysis of forensic casework samples using TECAN Genesis RSP 150/8 or Freedom EVO liquid handling workstations equipped exclusively with nondisposable tips. Robot tip cleaning routines have been incorporated strategically within the DNA extraction process as well as at the end of each session. Alternative options were examined for cleaning the tips and different strategies were employed to verify cross-contamination. A 2% sodium hypochlorite wash (1/5th dilution of the 10.8% commercial bleach stock) proved to be the best overall approach for preventing cross-contamination of samples processed using our automated protocol. The bleach wash steps do not adversely impact the short tandem repeat (STR) profiles developed from DNA extracted robotically and allow for major cost savings through the implementation of fixed tips. We have demonstrated that robotic workstations equipped with fixed pipette tips can be used with confidence with properly designed tip washing routines to process casework samples using an adapted magnetic bead extraction protocol.

  10. Accelerating in vitro studies on circadian clock systems using an automated sampling device

    PubMed Central

    Furuike, Yoshihiko; Abe, Jun; Mukaiyama, Atsushi; Akiyama, Shuji

    2016-01-01

    KaiC, a core protein of the cyanobacterial circadian clock, is rhythmically autophosphorylated and autodephosphorylated with a period of approximately 24 h in the presence of two other Kai proteins, KaiA and KaiB. In vitro experiments to investigate the KaiC phosphorylation cycle consume considerable time and effort. To automate the fractionation, quantification, and evaluation steps, we developed a suite consisting of an automated sampling device equipped with an 8-channel temperature controller and accompanying analysis software. Eight sample tables can be controlled independently at different temperatures within a fluctuation of ±0.01°C, enabling investigation of the temperature dependency of clock activities simultaneously in a single experiment. The suite includes an independent software that helps users intuitively conduct a densitometric analysis of gel images in a short time with improved reliability. Multiple lanes on a gel can be detected quasi-automatically through an auto-detection procedure implemented in the software, with or without correction for lane ‘smiling.’ To demonstrate the performance of the suite, robustness of the period against temperature variations was evaluated using 32 datasets of the KaiC phosphorylation cycle. By using the software, the time required for the analysis was reduced by approximately 65% relative to the conventional method, with reasonable reproducibility and quality. The suite is potentially applicable to other clock or clock-related systems in higher organisms, relieving users from having to repeat multiple manual sampling and analytical steps. PMID:27924279

  11. Control and Automation of Fluid Flow, Mass Transfer and Chemical Reactions in Microscale Segmented Flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abolhasani, Milad

    Flowing trains of uniformly sized bubbles/droplets (i.e., segmented flows) and the associated mass transfer enhancement over their single-phase counterparts have been studied extensively during the past fifty years. Although the scaling behaviour of segmented flow formation is increasingly well understood, the predictive adjustment of the desired flow characteristics that influence the mixing and residence times, remains a challenge. Currently, a time consuming, slow and often inconsistent manual manipulation of experimental conditions is required to address this task. In my thesis, I have overcome the above-mentioned challenges and developed an experimental strategy that for the first time provided predictive control over segmented flows in a hands-off manner. A computer-controlled platform that consisted of a real-time image processing module within an integral controller, a silicon-based microreactor and automated fluid delivery technique was designed, implemented and validated. In a first part of my thesis I utilized this approach for the automated screening of physical mass transfer and solubility characteristics of carbon dioxide (CO2) in a physical solvent at a well-defined temperature and pressure and a throughput of 12 conditions per hour. Second, by applying the segmented flow approach to a recently discovered CO2 chemical absorbent, frustrated Lewis pairs (FLPs), I determined the thermodynamic characteristics of the CO2-FLP reaction. Finally, the segmented flow approach was employed for characterization and investigation of CO2-governed liquid-liquid phase separation process. The second part of my thesis utilized the segmented flow platform for the preparation and shape control of high quality colloidal nanomaterials (e.g., CdSe/CdS) via the automated control of residence times up to approximately 5 minutes. By introducing a novel oscillatory segmented flow concept, I was able to further extend the residence time limitation to 24 hours. A case study of a

  12. Performance verification of the Maxwell 16 Instrument and DNA IQ Reference Sample Kit for automated DNA extraction of known reference samples.

    PubMed

    Krnajski, Z; Geering, S; Steadman, S

    2007-12-01

    Advances in automation have been made for a number of processes conducted in the forensic DNA laboratory. However, because most robotic systems are designed for high-throughput laboratories batching large numbers of samples, smaller laboratories are left with a limited number of cost-effective options for employing automation. The Maxwell 16 Instrument and DNA IQ Reference Sample Kit marketed by Promega are designed for rapid, automated purification of DNA extracts from sample sets consisting of sixteen or fewer samples. Because the system is based on DNA capture by paramagnetic particles with maximum binding capacity, it is designed to generate extracts with yield consistency. The studies herein enabled evaluation of STR profile concordance, consistency of yield, and cross-contamination performance for the Maxwell 16 Instrument. Results indicate that the system performs suitably for streamlining the process of extracting known reference samples generally used for forensic DNA analysis and has many advantages in a small or moderate-sized laboratory environment.

  13. Automation of high-frequency sampling of environmental waters for reactive species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, H.; Bishop, J. K.; Wood, T.; Fung, I.; Fong, M.

    2011-12-01

    Trace metals, particularly iron and manganese, play a critical role in some ecosystems as a limiting factor to determine primary productivity, in geochemistry, especially redox chemistry as important electron donors and acceptors, and in aquatic environments as carriers of contaminant transport. Dynamics of trace metals are closely related to various hydrologic events such as rainfall. Storm flow triggers dramatic changes of both dissolved and particulate trace metals concentrations and affects other important environmental parameters linked to trace metal behavior such as dissolved organic carbon (DOC). To improve our understanding of behaviors of trace metals and underlying processes, water chemistry information must be collected for an adequately long period of time at higher frequency than conventional manual sampling (e.g. weekly, biweekly). In this study, we developed an automated sampling system to document the dynamics of trace metals, focusing on Fe and Mn, and DOC for a multiple-year high-frequency geochemistry time series in a small catchment, called Rivendell located at Angelo Coast Range Reserve, California. We are sampling ground and streamwater using the automated sampling system in daily-frequency and the condition of the site is substantially variable from season to season. The ranges of pH of ground and streamwater are pH 5 - 7 and pH 7.8 - 8.3, respectively. DOC is usually sub-ppm, but during rain events, it increases by an order of magnitude. The automated sampling system focuses on two aspects- 1) a modified design of sampler to improve sample integrity for trace metals and DOC and 2) remote controlling system to update sampling volume and timing according to hydrological conditions. To maintain sample integrity, the developed method employed gravity filtering using large volume syringes (140mL) and syringe filters connected to a set of polypropylene bottles and a borosilicate bottle via Teflon tubing. Without filtration, in a few days, the

  14. An automated method for 'clumped-isotope' measurements on small carbonate samples.

    PubMed

    Schmid, Thomas W; Bernasconi, Stefano M

    2010-07-30

    Clumped-isotope geochemistry deals with the state of ordering of rare isotopes in molecules, in particular with their tendency to form bonds with other rare isotopes rather than with the most abundant ones. Among its possible applications, carbonate clumped-isotope thermometry is the one that has gained most attention because of the wide potential of applications in many disciplines of earth sciences. Clumped-isotope thermometry allows reconstructing the temperature of formation of carbonate minerals without knowing the isotopic composition of the water from which they were formed. This feature enables new approaches in paleothermometry. The currently published method is, however, limited by sample weight requirements of 10-15 mg and because measurements are performed manually. In this paper we present a new method using an automated sample preparation device coupled to an isotope ratio mass spectrometer. The method is based on the repeated analysis (n = 6-8) of 200 microg aliquots of sample material and completely automated measurements. In addition, we propose to use precisely calibrated carbonates spanning a wide range in Delta(47) instead of heated gases to correct for isotope effects caused by the source of the mass spectrometer, following the principle of equal treatment of the samples and standards. We present data for international standards (NBS 19 and LSVEC) and different carbonates formed at temperatures exceeding 600 degrees C to show that precisions in the range of 10 to 15 ppm (1 SE) can be reached for repeated analyses of a single sample. Finally, we discuss and validate the correction procedure based on high-temperature carbonates instead of heated gases.

  15. Robowell: An automated process for monitoring ground water quality using established sampling protocols

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Granato, G.E.; Smith, K.P.

    1999-01-01

    Robowell is an automated process for monitoring selected ground water quality properties and constituents by pumping a well or multilevel sampler. Robowell was developed and tested to provide a cost-effective monitoring system that meets protocols expected for manual sampling. The process uses commercially available electronics, instrumentation, and hardware, so it can be configured to monitor ground water quality using the equipment, purge protocol, and monitoring well design most appropriate for the monitoring site and the contaminants of interest. A Robowell prototype was installed on a sewage treatment plant infiltration bed that overlies a well-studied unconfined sand and gravel aquifer at the Massachusetts Military Reservation, Cape Cod, Massachusetts, during a time when two distinct plumes of constituents were released. The prototype was operated from May 10 to November 13, 1996, and quality-assurance/quality-control measurements demonstrated that the data obtained by the automated method was equivalent to data obtained by manual sampling methods using the same sampling protocols. Water level, specific conductance, pH, water temperature, dissolved oxygen, and dissolved ammonium were monitored by the prototype as the wells were purged according to U.S Geological Survey (USGS) ground water sampling protocols. Remote access to the data record, via phone modem communications, indicated the arrival of each plume over a few days and the subsequent geochemical reactions over the following weeks. Real-time availability of the monitoring record provided the information needed to initiate manual sampling efforts in response to changes in measured ground water quality, which proved the method and characterized the screened portion of the plume in detail through time. The methods and the case study described are presented to document the process for future use.

  16. Design of an ultra-portable field transfer radiometer supporting automated vicarious calibration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson, Nikolaus; Thome, Kurtis; Czapla-Myers, Jeffrey; Biggar, Stuart

    2015-09-01

    The University of Arizona Remote Sensing Group (RSG) began outfitting the radiometric calibration test site (RadCaTS) at Railroad Valley Nevada in 2004 for automated vicarious calibration of Earth-observing sensors. RadCaTS was upgraded to use RSG custom 8-band ground viewing radiometers (GVRs) beginning in 2011 and currently four GVRs are deployed providing an average reflectance for the test site. This measurement of ground reflectance is the most critical component of vicarious calibration using the reflectance-based method. In order to ensure the quality of these measurements, RSG has been exploring more efficient and accurate methods of on-site calibration evaluation. This work describes the design of, and initial results from, a small portable transfer radiometer for the purpose of GVR calibration validation on site. Prior to deployment, RSG uses high accuracy laboratory calibration methods in order to provide radiance calibrations with low uncertainties for each GVR. After deployment, a solar radiation based calibration has typically been used. The method is highly dependent on a clear, stable atmosphere, requires at least two people to perform, is time consuming in post processing, and is dependent on several large pieces of equipment. In order to provide more regular and more accurate calibration monitoring, the small portable transfer radiometer is designed for quick, one-person operation and on-site field calibration comparison results. The radiometer is also suited for laboratory calibration use and thus could be used as a transfer radiometer calibration standard for ground viewing radiometers of a RadCalNet site.

  17. Automated high-throughput in vitro screening of the acetylcholine esterase inhibiting potential of environmental samples, mixtures and single compounds.

    PubMed

    Froment, Jean; Thomas, Kevin V; Tollefsen, Knut Erik

    2016-08-01

    A high-throughput and automated assay for testing the presence of acetylcholine esterase (AChE) inhibiting compounds was developed, validated and applied to screen different types of environmental samples. Automation involved using the assay in 96-well plates and adapting it for the use with an automated workstation. Validation was performed by comparing the results of the automated assay with that of a previously validated and standardised assay for two known AChE inhibitors (paraoxon and dichlorvos). The results show that the assay provides similar concentration-response curves (CRCs) when run according to the manual and automated protocol. Automation of the assay resulted in a reduction in assay run time as well as in intra- and inter-assay variations. High-quality CRCs were obtained for both of the model AChE inhibitors (dichlorvos IC50=120µM and paraoxon IC50=0.56µM) when tested alone. The effect of co-exposure of an equipotent binary mixture of the two chemicals were consistent with predictions of additivity and best described by the concentration addition model for combined toxicity. Extracts of different environmental samples (landfill leachate, wastewater treatment plant effluent, and road tunnel construction run-off) were then screened for AChE inhibiting activity using the automated bioassay, with only landfill leachate shown to contain potential AChE inhibitors. Potential uses and limitations of the assay were discussed based on the present results.

  18. Fully Automated Laser Ablation Liquid Capture Sample Analysis using NanoElectrospray Ionization Mass Spectrometry

    SciTech Connect

    Lorenz, Matthias; Ovchinnikova, Olga S; Van Berkel, Gary J

    2014-01-01

    RATIONALE: Laser ablation provides for the possibility of sampling a large variety of surfaces with high spatial resolution. This type of sampling when employed in conjunction with liquid capture followed by nanoelectrospray ionization provides the opportunity for sensitive and prolonged interrogation of samples by mass spectrometry as well as the ability to analyze surfaces not amenable to direct liquid extraction. METHODS: A fully automated, reflection geometry, laser ablation liquid capture spot sampling system was achieved by incorporating appropriate laser fiber optics and a focusing lens into a commercially available, liquid extraction surface analysis (LESA ) ready Advion TriVersa NanoMate system. RESULTS: Under optimized conditions about 10% of laser ablated material could be captured in a droplet positioned vertically over the ablation region using the NanoMate robot controlled pipette. The sampling spot size area with this laser ablation liquid capture surface analysis (LA/LCSA) mode of operation (typically about 120 m x 160 m) was approximately 50 times smaller than that achievable by direct liquid extraction using LESA (ca. 1 mm diameter liquid extraction spot). The set-up was successfully applied for the analysis of ink on glass and paper as well as the endogenous components in Alstroemeria Yellow King flower petals. In a second mode of operation with a comparable sampling spot size, termed laser ablation/LESA , the laser system was used to drill through, penetrate, or otherwise expose material beneath a solvent resistant surface. Once drilled, LESA was effective in sampling soluble material exposed at that location on the surface. CONCLUSIONS: Incorporating the capability for different laser ablation liquid capture spot sampling modes of operation into a LESA ready Advion TriVersa NanoMate enhanced the spot sampling spatial resolution of this device and broadened the surface types amenable to analysis to include absorbent and solvent resistant

  19. Automated MALDI Matrix Coating System for Multiple Tissue Samples for Imaging Mass Spectrometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mounfield, William P.; Garrett, Timothy J.

    2012-03-01

    Uniform matrix deposition on tissue samples for matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI) is key for reproducible analyte ion signals. Current methods often result in nonhomogenous matrix deposition, and take time and effort to produce acceptable ion signals. Here we describe a fully-automated method for matrix deposition using an enclosed spray chamber and spray nozzle for matrix solution delivery. A commercial air-atomizing spray nozzle was modified and combined with solenoid controlled valves and a Programmable Logic Controller (PLC) to control and deliver the matrix solution. A spray chamber was employed to contain the nozzle, sample, and atomized matrix solution stream, and to prevent any interference from outside conditions as well as allow complete control of the sample environment. A gravity cup was filled with MALDI matrix solutions, including DHB in chloroform/methanol (50:50) at concentrations up to 60 mg/mL. Various samples (including rat brain tissue sections) were prepared using two deposition methods (spray chamber, inkjet). A linear ion trap equipped with an intermediate-pressure MALDI source was used for analyses. Optical microscopic examination showed a uniform coating of matrix crystals across the sample. Overall, the mass spectral images gathered from tissues coated using the spray chamber system were of better quality and more reproducible than from tissue specimens prepared by the inkjet deposition method.

  20. Automated MALDI matrix coating system for multiple tissue samples for imaging mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Mounfield, William P; Garrett, Timothy J

    2012-03-01

    Uniform matrix deposition on tissue samples for matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI) is key for reproducible analyte ion signals. Current methods often result in nonhomogenous matrix deposition, and take time and effort to produce acceptable ion signals. Here we describe a fully-automated method for matrix deposition using an enclosed spray chamber and spray nozzle for matrix solution delivery. A commercial air-atomizing spray nozzle was modified and combined with solenoid controlled valves and a Programmable Logic Controller (PLC) to control and deliver the matrix solution. A spray chamber was employed to contain the nozzle, sample, and atomized matrix solution stream, and to prevent any interference from outside conditions as well as allow complete control of the sample environment. A gravity cup was filled with MALDI matrix solutions, including DHB in chloroform/methanol (50:50) at concentrations up to 60 mg/mL. Various samples (including rat brain tissue sections) were prepared using two deposition methods (spray chamber, inkjet). A linear ion trap equipped with an intermediate-pressure MALDI source was used for analyses. Optical microscopic examination showed a uniform coating of matrix crystals across the sample. Overall, the mass spectral images gathered from tissues coated using the spray chamber system were of better quality and more reproducible than from tissue specimens prepared by the inkjet deposition method.

  1. Microbiological monitoring and automated event sampling at karst springs using LEO-satellites.

    PubMed

    Stadler, H; Skritek, P; Sommer, R; Mach, R L; Zerobin, W; Farnleitner, A H

    2008-01-01

    Data communication via Low-Earth-Orbit (LEO) Satellites between portable hydrometeorological measuring stations is the backbone of our system. This networking allows automated event sampling with short time increments also for E. coli field analysis. All activities of the course of the event-sampling can be observed on an internet platform based on a Linux-Server. Conventionally taken samples compared with the auto-sampling procedure revealed corresponding results and were in agreement with the ISO 9308-1 reference method. E. coli concentrations were individually corrected by event specific inactivation coefficients (0.10-0.14 day(-1)), compensating losses due to sample storage at spring temperature in the auto sampler.Two large summer events in 2005/2006 at an important alpine karst spring (LKAS2) were monitored including detailed analysis of E. coli dynamics (n = 271) together with comprehensive hydrological characterisations. High-resolution time series demonstrated a sudden increase of E. coli concentrations in spring water (approximately 2 log10 units) with a specific time delay after the beginning of the event. Statistical analysis suggested the spectral absorption coefficient measured at 254 nm (SAC254) as an early warning surrogate for real time monitoring of faecal input. Together with the LEO-satellite based system it is a helpful tool for early-warning systems in the field of drinking water protection.

  2. Artificial Neural Network for Total Laboratory Automation to Improve the Management of Sample Dilution.

    PubMed

    Ialongo, Cristiano; Pieri, Massimo; Bernardini, Sergio

    2017-02-01

    Diluting a sample to obtain a measure within the analytical range is a common task in clinical laboratories. However, for urgent samples, it can cause delays in test reporting, which can put patients' safety at risk. The aim of this work is to show a simple artificial neural network that can be used to make it unnecessary to predilute a sample using the information available through the laboratory information system. Particularly, the Multilayer Perceptron neural network built on a data set of 16,106 cardiac troponin I test records produced a correct inference rate of 100% for samples not requiring predilution and 86.2% for those requiring predilution. With respect to the inference reliability, the most relevant inputs were the presence of a cardiac event or surgery and the result of the previous assay. Therefore, such an artificial neural network can be easily implemented into a total automation framework to sensibly reduce the turnaround time of critical orders delayed by the operation required to retrieve, dilute, and retest the sample.

  3. A modifiable microarray-based universal sensor: providing sample-to-results automation.

    PubMed

    Yasmin, Rubina; Zhu, Hui; Chen, Zongyuan; Montagna, Richard A

    2016-10-01

    A microfluidic system consisting of generic single use cartridges which interface with a workstation allows the automatic performance of all necessary sample preparation, PCR analysis and interpretation of multiplex PCR assays. The cartridges contain a DNA array with 20 different 16mer DNA "universal" probes immobilized at defined locations. PCR amplicons can be detected via hybridization of user-defined "reporter" probes that are complementary at their 3' termini to one or more of the universal probes and complementary to the target amplicons at their 5' termini. The system was able to detect single-plex and multiplex PCR amplicons from various infectious agents as well as wild type and mutant alleles of single nucleotide polymorphisms. The system's ease of use was further demonstrated by converting a published PCR assay for the detection of Mycobacterium genitalium in a fully automated manner. Excellent correlation between traditional manual methods and the automated analysis performed by the workstation suggests that the system can provide a means to easily design and implement a variety of customized PCR-based assays. The system will be useful to researchers or clinical investigators seeking to develop their own user defined assays. As the U.S. FDA continues to pursue regulatory oversight of LDTs, the system would also allow labs to continue to develop compliant assays.

  4. Automated suppression of sample-related artifacts in Fluorescence Correlation Spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Ries, Jonas; Bayer, Mathias; Csúcs, Gábor; Dirkx, Ronald; Solimena, Michele; Ewers, Helge; Schwille, Petra

    2010-05-24

    Fluorescence Correlation Spectroscopy (FCS) in cells often suffers from artifacts caused by bright aggregates or vesicles, depletion of fluorophores or bleaching of a fluorescent background. The common practice of manually discarding distorted curves is time consuming and subjective. Here we demonstrate the feasibility of automated FCS data analysis with efficient rejection of corrupted parts of the signal. As test systems we use a solution of fluorescent molecules, contaminated with bright fluorescent beads, as well as cells expressing a fluorescent protein (ICA512-EGFP), which partitions into bright secretory granules. This approach improves the accuracy of FCS measurements in biological samples, extends its applicability to especially challenging systems and greatly simplifies and accelerates the data analysis.

  5. Toward automated denoising of single molecular Förster resonance energy transfer data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Hao-Chih; Lin, Bo-Lin; Chang, Wei-Hau; Tu, I.-Ping

    2012-01-01

    A wide-field two-channel fluorescence microscope is a powerful tool as it allows for the study of conformation dynamics of hundreds to thousands of immobilized single molecules by Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) signals. To date, the data reduction from a movie to a final set containing meaningful single-molecule FRET (smFRET) traces involves human inspection and intervention at several critical steps, greatly hampering the efficiency at the post-imaging stage. To facilitate the data reduction from smFRET movies to smFRET traces and to address the noise-limited issues, we developed a statistical denoising system toward fully automated processing. This data reduction system has embedded several novel approaches. First, as to background subtraction, high-order singular value decomposition (HOSVD) method is employed to extract spatial and temporal features. Second, to register and map the two color channels, the spots representing bleeding through the donor channel to the acceptor channel are used. Finally, correlation analysis and likelihood ratio statistic for the change point detection (CPD) are developed to study the two channels simultaneously, resolve FRET states, and report the dwelling time of each state. The performance of our method has been checked using both simulation and real data.

  6. An Automated Algorithm to Screen Massive Training Samples for a Global Impervious Surface Classification

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tan, Bin; Brown de Colstoun, Eric; Wolfe, Robert E.; Tilton, James C.; Huang, Chengquan; Smith, Sarah E.

    2012-01-01

    An algorithm is developed to automatically screen the outliers from massive training samples for Global Land Survey - Imperviousness Mapping Project (GLS-IMP). GLS-IMP is to produce a global 30 m spatial resolution impervious cover data set for years 2000 and 2010 based on the Landsat Global Land Survey (GLS) data set. This unprecedented high resolution impervious cover data set is not only significant to the urbanization studies but also desired by the global carbon, hydrology, and energy balance researches. A supervised classification method, regression tree, is applied in this project. A set of accurate training samples is the key to the supervised classifications. Here we developed the global scale training samples from 1 m or so resolution fine resolution satellite data (Quickbird and Worldview2), and then aggregate the fine resolution impervious cover map to 30 m resolution. In order to improve the classification accuracy, the training samples should be screened before used to train the regression tree. It is impossible to manually screen 30 m resolution training samples collected globally. For example, in Europe only, there are 174 training sites. The size of the sites ranges from 4.5 km by 4.5 km to 8.1 km by 3.6 km. The amount training samples are over six millions. Therefore, we develop this automated statistic based algorithm to screen the training samples in two levels: site and scene level. At the site level, all the training samples are divided to 10 groups according to the percentage of the impervious surface within a sample pixel. The samples following in each 10% forms one group. For each group, both univariate and multivariate outliers are detected and removed. Then the screen process escalates to the scene level. A similar screen process but with a looser threshold is applied on the scene level considering the possible variance due to the site difference. We do not perform the screen process across the scenes because the scenes might vary due to

  7. Automation of sample preparation for mass cytometry barcoding in support of clinical research: protocol optimization.

    PubMed

    Nassar, Ala F; Wisnewski, Adam V; Raddassi, Khadir

    2017-03-01

    Analysis of multiplexed assays is highly important for clinical diagnostics and other analytical applications. Mass cytometry enables multi-dimensional, single-cell analysis of cell type and state. In mass cytometry, the rare earth metals used as reporters on antibodies allow determination of marker expression in individual cells. Barcode-based bioassays for CyTOF are able to encode and decode for different experimental conditions or samples within the same experiment, facilitating progress in producing straightforward and consistent results. Herein, an integrated protocol for automated sample preparation for barcoding used in conjunction with mass cytometry for clinical bioanalysis samples is described; we offer results of our work with barcoding protocol optimization. In addition, we present some points to be considered in order to minimize the variability of quantitative mass cytometry measurements. For example, we discuss the importance of having multiple populations during titration of the antibodies and effect of storage and shipping of labelled samples on the stability of staining for purposes of CyTOF analysis. Data quality is not affected when labelled samples are stored either frozen or at 4 °C and used within 10 days; we observed that cell loss is greater if cells are washed with deionized water prior to shipment or are shipped in lower concentration. Once the labelled samples for CyTOF are suspended in deionized water, the analysis should be performed expeditiously, preferably within the first hour. Damage can be minimized if the cells are resuspended in phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) rather than deionized water while waiting for data acquisition.

  8. Establishing a novel automated magnetic bead-based method for the extraction of DNA from a variety of forensic samples.

    PubMed

    Witt, Sebastian; Neumann, Jan; Zierdt, Holger; Gébel, Gabriella; Röscheisen, Christiane

    2012-09-01

    Automated systems have been increasingly utilized for DNA extraction by many forensic laboratories to handle growing numbers of forensic casework samples while minimizing the risk of human errors and assuring high reproducibility. The step towards automation however is not easy: The automated extraction method has to be very versatile to reliably prepare high yields of pure genomic DNA from a broad variety of sample types on different carrier materials. To prevent possible cross-contamination of samples or the loss of DNA, the components of the kit have to be designed in a way that allows for the automated handling of the samples with no manual intervention necessary. DNA extraction using paramagnetic particles coated with a DNA-binding surface is predestined for an automated approach. For this study, we tested different DNA extraction kits using DNA-binding paramagnetic particles with regard to DNA yield and handling by a Freedom EVO(®)150 extraction robot (Tecan) equipped with a Te-MagS magnetic separator. Among others, the extraction kits tested were the ChargeSwitch(®)Forensic DNA Purification Kit (Invitrogen), the PrepFiler™Automated Forensic DNA Extraction Kit (Applied Biosystems) and NucleoMag™96 Trace (Macherey-Nagel). After an extensive test phase, we established a novel magnetic bead extraction method based upon the NucleoMag™ extraction kit (Macherey-Nagel). The new method is readily automatable and produces high yields of DNA from different sample types (blood, saliva, sperm, contact stains) on various substrates (filter paper, swabs, cigarette butts) with no evidence of a loss of magnetic beads or sample cross-contamination.

  9. Rapid and automated sample preparation for nucleic acid extraction on a microfluidic CD (compact disk)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Jitae; Kido, Horacio; Zoval, Jim V.; Gagné, Dominic; Peytavi, Régis; Picard, François J.; Bastien, Martine; Boissinot, Maurice; Bergeron, Michel G.; Madou, Marc J.

    2006-01-01

    Rapid and automated preparation of PCR (polymerase chain reaction)-ready genomic DNA was demonstrated on a multiplexed CD (compact disk) platform by using hard-to-lyse bacterial spores. Cell disruption is carried out while beadcell suspensions are pushed back and forth in center-tapered lysing chambers by angular oscillation of the disk - keystone effect. During this lysis period, the cell suspensions are securely held within the lysing chambers by heatactivated wax valves. Upon application of a remote heat to the disk in motion, the wax valves release lysate solutions into centrifuge chambers where cell debris are separated by an elevated rotation of the disk. Only debris-free DNA extract is then transferred to collection chambers by capillary-assisted siphon and collected for heating that inactivates PCR inhibitors. Lysing capacity was evaluated using a real-time PCR assay to monitor the efficiency of Bacillus globigii spore lysis. PCR analysis showed that 5 minutes' CD lysis run gave spore lysis efficiency similar to that obtained with a popular commercial DNA extraction kit (i.e., IDI-lysis kit from GeneOhm Sciences Inc.) which is highly efficient for microbial cell and spore lysis. This work will contribute to the development of an integrated CD-based assay for rapid diagnosis of infectious diseases.

  10. Drug Discovery Testing Compounds in Patients Samples by Automated Flow Cytometry.

    PubMed

    Hernández, Pilar; Gorrochategui, Julián; Primo, Daniel; Robles, Alicia; Rojas, José Luis; Espinosa, Ana Belén; Gómez, Cristina; Martínez-López, Joaquín; Bennett, Teresa A; Ballesteros, Joan

    2017-03-01

    Functional ex vivo assays that predict a patient's clinical response to anticancer drugs for guiding cancer treatment have long been a goal, but few have yet proved to be reliable. To address this, we have developed an automated flow cytometry platform for drug screening that evaluates multiple endpoints with a robust data analysis system that can capture the complex mechanisms of action across different compounds. This system, called PharmaFlow, is used to test peripheral blood or bone marrow samples from patients diagnosed with hematological malignancies. Functional assays that use the whole sample, retaining all the microenvironmental components contained in the sample, offer an approach to ex vivo testing that may give results that are clinically relevant. This new approach can help to predict the patients' response to existing treatments or to drugs under development, for hematological malignancies or other tumors. In addition, relevant biomarkers can be identified that determine the patient's sensitivity, resistance, or toxicity to a given treatment. We propose that this approach, which better recapitulates the human microenvironment, constitutes a more predictive assay for personalized medicine and preclinical drug discovery.

  11. Design and Implementation of an Automated Illuminating, Culturing, and Sampling System for Microbial Optogenetic Applications.

    PubMed

    Stewart, Cameron J; McClean, Megan N

    2017-02-19

    Optogenetic systems utilize genetically-encoded proteins that change conformation in response to specific wavelengths of light to alter cellular processes. There is a need for culturing and measuring systems that incorporate programmed illumination and stimulation of optogenetic systems. We present a protocol for building and using a continuous culturing apparatus to illuminate microbial cells with programmed doses of light, and automatically acquire and analyze images of cells in the effluent. The operation of this apparatus as a chemostat allows the growth rate and the cellular environment to be tightly controlled. The effluent of the continuous cell culture is regularly sampled and the cells are imaged by multi-channel microscopy. The culturing, sampling, imaging, and image analysis are fully automated so that dynamic responses in the fluorescence intensity and cellular morphology of cells sampled from the culture effluent are measured over multiple days without user input. We demonstrate the utility of this culturing apparatus by dynamically inducing protein production in a strain of Saccharomyces cerevisiae engineered with an optogenetic system that activates transcription.

  12. Automated measurement and quantification of heterotrophic bacteria in water samples based on the MPN method.

    PubMed

    Fuchsluger, C; Preims, M; Fritz, I

    2011-01-01

    Quantification of heterotrophic bacteria is a widely used measure for water analysis. Especially in terms of drinking water analysis, testing for microorganisms is strictly regulated by the European Drinking Water Directive, including quality criteria and detection limits. The quantification procedure presented in this study is based on the most probable number (MPN) method, which was adapted to comply with the need for a quick and easy screening tool for different kinds of water samples as well as varying microbial loads. Replacing tubes with 24-well titer plates for cultivation of bacteria drastically reduces the amount of culture media and also simplifies incubation. Automated photometric measurement of turbidity instead of visual evaluation of bacterial growth avoids misinterpretation by operators. Definition of a threshold ensures definite and user-independent determination of microbial growth. Calculation of the MPN itself is done using a program provided by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). For evaluation of the method, real water samples of different origins as well as pure cultures of bacteria were analyzed in parallel with the conventional plating methods. Thus, the procedure described requires less preparation time, reduces costs and ensures both stable and reliable results for water samples.

  13. An automated system to mount cryo-cooled protein crystals on a synchrotron beam line, using compact sample cassettes and a small-scale robot

    PubMed Central

    Cohen, Aina E.; Ellis, Paul J.; Miller, Mitchell D.; Deacon, Ashley M.; Phizackerley, R. Paul

    2014-01-01

    An automated system for mounting and dismounting pre-frozen crystals has been implemented at the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Laboratory (SSRL). It is based on a small industrial robot and compact cylindrical cassettes, each holding up to 96 crystals mounted on Hampton Research sample pins. For easy shipping and storage, the cassette fits inside several popular dry-shippers and long-term storage Dewars. A dispensing Dewar holds up to three cassettes in liquid nitrogen adjacent to the beam line goniometer. The robot uses a permanent magnet tool to extract samples from, and insert samples into a cassette, and a cryo-tong tool to transfer them to and from the beam line goniometer. The system is simple, with few moving parts, reliable in operation and convenient to use. PMID:24899734

  14. An automated approach for the identification of horizontal gene transfers from complete genomes reveals the rhizome of Rickettsiales

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is considered to be a major force driving the evolutionary history of prokaryotes. HGT is widespread in prokaryotes, contributing to the genomic repertoire of prokaryotic organisms, and is particularly apparent in Rickettsiales genomes. Gene gains from both distantly and closely related organisms play crucial roles in the evolution of bacterial genomes. In this work, we focus on genes transferred from distantly related species into Rickettsiales species. Results We developed an automated approach for the detection of HGT from other organisms (excluding alphaproteobacteria) into Rickettsiales genomes. Our systematic approach consisted of several specialized features including the application of a parsimony method for inferring phyletic patterns followed by blast filter, automated phylogenetic reconstruction and the application of patterns for HGT detection. We identified 42 instances of HGT in 31 complete Rickettsiales genomes, of which 38 were previously unidentified instances of HGT from Anaplasma, Wolbachia, Candidatus Pelagibacter ubique and Rickettsia genomes. Additionally, putative cases with no phylogenetic support were assigned gene ontology terms. Overall, these transfers could be characterized as “rhizome-like”. Conclusions Our analysis provides a comprehensive, systematic approach for the automated detection of HGTs from several complete proteome sequences that can be applied to detect instances of HGT within other genomes of interest. PMID:23234643

  15. A user-friendly robotic sample preparation program for fully automated biological sample pipetting and dilution to benefit the regulated bioanalysis.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Hao; Ouyang, Zheng; Zeng, Jianing; Yuan, Long; Zheng, Naiyu; Jemal, Mohammed; Arnold, Mark E

    2012-06-01

    Biological sample dilution is a rate-limiting step in bioanalytical sample preparation when the concentrations of samples are beyond standard curve ranges, especially when multiple dilution factors are needed in an analytical run. We have developed and validated a Microsoft Excel-based robotic sample preparation program (RSPP) that automatically transforms Watson worklist sample information (identification, sequence and dilution factor) to comma-separated value (CSV) files. The Freedom EVO liquid handler software imports and transforms the CSV files to executable worklists (.gwl files), allowing the robot to perform sample dilutions at variable dilution factors. The dynamic dilution range is 1- to 1000-fold and divided into three dilution steps: 1- to 10-, 11- to 100-, and 101- to 1000-fold. The whole process, including pipetting samples, diluting samples, and adding internal standard(s), is accomplished within 1 h for two racks of samples (96 samples/rack). This platform also supports online sample extraction (liquid-liquid extraction, solid-phase extraction, protein precipitation, etc.) using 96 multichannel arms. This fully automated and validated sample dilution and preparation process has been applied to several drug development programs. The results demonstrate that application of the RSPP for fully automated sample processing is efficient and rugged. The RSPP not only saved more than 50% of the time in sample pipetting and dilution but also reduced human errors. The generated bioanalytical data are accurate and precise; therefore, this application can be used in regulated bioanalysis.

  16. Automation and integration of multiplexed on-line sample preparation with capillary electrophoresis for DNA sequencing

    SciTech Connect

    Tan, H.

    1999-03-31

    The purpose of this research is to develop a multiplexed sample processing system in conjunction with multiplexed capillary electrophoresis for high-throughput DNA sequencing. The concept from DNA template to called bases was first demonstrated with a manually operated single capillary system. Later, an automated microfluidic system with 8 channels based on the same principle was successfully constructed. The instrument automatically processes 8 templates through reaction, purification, denaturation, pre-concentration, injection, separation and detection in a parallel fashion. A multiplexed freeze/thaw switching principle and a distribution network were implemented to manage flow direction and sample transportation. Dye-labeled terminator cycle-sequencing reactions are performed in an 8-capillary array in a hot air thermal cycler. Subsequently, the sequencing ladders are directly loaded into a corresponding size-exclusion chromatographic column operated at {approximately} 60 C for purification. On-line denaturation and stacking injection for capillary electrophoresis is simultaneously accomplished at a cross assembly set at {approximately} 70 C. Not only the separation capillary array but also the reaction capillary array and purification columns can be regenerated after every run. DNA sequencing data from this system allow base calling up to 460 bases with accuracy of 98%.

  17. Analysis of zearalenone in cereal and Swine feed samples using an automated flow-through immunosensor.

    PubMed

    Urraca, Javier L; Benito-Peña, Elena; Pérez-Conde, Concepción; Moreno-Bondi, María C; Pestka, James J

    2005-05-04

    The development of a sensitive flow-though immunosensor for the analysis of the mycotoxin zearalenone in cereal samples is described. The sensor was completely automated and was based on a direct competitive immunosorbent assay and fluorescence detection. The mycotoxin competes with a horseradish-peroxidase-labeled derivative for the binding sites of a rabbit polyclonal antibody. Control pore glass covalently bound to Prot A was used for the oriented immobilization of the antibody-antigen immunocomplexes. The immunosensor shows an IC(50) value of 0.087 ng mL(-1) (RSD = 2.8%, n = 6) and a dynamic range from 0.019 to 0.422 ng mL(-1). The limit of detection (90% of blank signal) of 0.007 ng mL(-1) (RSD = 3.9%, n = 3) is lower than previously published methods. Corn, wheat, and swine feed samples have been analyzed with the device after extraction of the analyte using accelerated solvent extraction (ASE). The immunosensor has been validated using a corn certificate reference material and HPLC with fluorescence detection.

  18. Measurement of airborne carbonyls using an automated sampling and analysis system.

    PubMed

    Aiello, Mauro; McLaren, Robert

    2009-12-01

    Based upon the well established method of derivitization with 2,4-dinitrophenylhydrazine, an instrument was developed for ambient measurement of carbonyls with significantly improved temporal resolution and detection limits through automation, direct injection, and continuous use of a single microsilica DNPH cartridge. Kinetic experiments indicate that the derivitization reaction on the cartridge is fast enough for continuous measurements with 50 min air sampling. Reaction efficiencies measured on the cartridge were 100% for the carbonyls tested, including formaldehyde, acetaldehyde, propanal, acetone, and benzaldehyde. Transmission of the carbonyls through an ozone scrubber (KI) were in the range of 97-101%. Blank levels and detection limits were lower than those obtainable with conventional DNPH methods by an order of magnitude or greater. Mixing ratio detection limits of carbonyls in ambient air were 38-73 ppt for a 50 min air sample (2.5 L). The instrument made continuous measurements of carbonyls on a 2 h cycle over a period of 10 days during a field study in southwestern Ontario. Median mixing ratios were 0.58 ppb formaldehyde; 0.29 ppb acetaldehyde; 1.14 ppb acetone; and 0.45 ppb glyoxal. Glyoxal shows a significant correlation with ozone and zero intercept, consistent with a secondary source and minor direct source to the atmosphere. The method should easily be extendable to the detection of other low molecular weight carbonyls that have been previously reported using the DNPH technique.

  19. Plasma cortisol and norepinephrine concentrations in pigs: automated sampling of freely moving pigs housed in the PigTurn versus manually sampled and restrained pigs

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Minimizing effects of restraint and human interaction on the endocrine physiology of animals is essential for collection of accurate physiological measurements. Our objective was to compare stress-induced cortisol (CORT) and norepinephrine (NE) responses in automated versus manual blood sampling. A ...

  20. Plasma cortisol and noradrenalin concentrations in pigs: automated sampling of freely moving pigs housed in PigTurn versus manually sampled and restrained pigs

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Minimizing the effects of restraint and human interaction on the endocrine physiology of animals is essential for collection of accurate physiological measurements. Our objective was to compare stress-induced cortisol (CORT) and noradrenalin (NorA) responses in automated versus manual blood sampling...

  1. Strategies for automated sample preparation, nucleic acid purification, and concentration of low-target-number nucleic acids in environmental and food processing samples

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bruckner-Lea, Cynthia J.; Holman, David A.; Schuck, Beatrice L.; Brockman, Fred J.; Chandler, Darrell P.

    1999-01-01

    The purpose of this work is to develop a rapid, automated system for nucleic acid purification and concentration from environmental and food processing samples. Our current approach involves off-line filtration and cell lysis (ballistic disintegration) functions in appropriate buffers followed by automated nucleic acid capture and purification on renewable affinity matrix microcolumns. Physical cell lysis and renewable affinity microcolumns eliminate the need for toxic organic solvents, enzyme digestions or other time- consuming sample manipulations. Within the renewable affinity microcolumn, we have examined nucleic acid capture and purification efficiency with various microbead matrices (glass, polymer, paramagnetic), surface derivitization (sequence-specific capture oligonucleotides or peptide nucleic acids), and DNA target size and concentration under variable solution conditions and temperatures. Results will be presented comparing automated system performance relative to benchtop procedures for both clean (pure DNA from a laboratory culture) and environmental (soil extract) samples, including results which demonstrate 8 minute purification and elution of low-copy nucleic acid targets from a crude soil extract in a form suitable for PCR or microarray-based detectors. Future research will involve the development of improved affinity reagents and complete system integration, including upstream cell concentration and cell lysis functions and downstream, gene-based detectors. Results of this research will ultimately lead to improved processes and instrumentation for on-line, automated monitors for pathogenic micro-organisms in food, water, air, and soil samples.

  2. Development of an automated multiple-target mask CD disposition system to enable new sampling strategy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ma, Jian; Farnsworth, Jeff; Bassist, Larry; Cui, Ying; Mammen, Bobby; Padmanaban, Ramaswamy; Nadamuni, Venkatesh; Kamath, Muralidhar; Buckmann, Ken; Neff, Julie; Freiberger, Phil

    2006-03-01

    Traditional mask critical dimension (CD) disposition systems with only one or two targets is being challenged by the new requirements from mask-users as the wafer process control becomes more complicated in the newer generation of technologies. Historically, the mask shop does not necessarily measure and disposition off the same kind of CD structures that wafer fabs do. Mask disposition specifications and structures come from the frame-design and the tapeout, while wafer-level CD dispositions are mainly based on the historical process window established per CD-skew experiments and EOL (end of line) yield. In the current high volume manufacturing environment, the mask CDs are mainly dispositioned off their mean-to-target (MTT) and uniformity (6sigma) on one or two types of pre-determined structures. The disposition specification is set to ensure the printed mask will meet the design requirements and to ensure minimum deviation from them. The CD data are also used to adjust the dose of the mask exposure tools to control CD MTT. As a result, the mask CD disposition automation system was built to allow only one or two kinds of targets at most. In contrast, wafer-fabs measure a fairly wide range of different structures to ensure their process is on target and in control. The number of such structures that are considered critical is increasing due the growing complexity of the technology. To fully comprehend the wafer-level requirements, it is highly desirable to align the mask CD sample site and disposition to be the same as that of the wafer-fabs, to measure the OPC (optical proximity correction) structures or equivalent whenever possible, and to establish the true correlation between mask CD measurements vs. wafer CD measurement. In this paper, the development of an automated multiple-target mask CD disposition system with the goal of enabling new sampling strategy is presented. The pros and cons of its implementation are discussed. The new system has been inserted in

  3. The T-lock: Automated compensation of radio-frequency induced sample heating

    PubMed Central

    Hiller, Sebastian; Arthanari, Haribabu; Wagner, Gerhard

    2009-01-01

    Modern high-field NMR spectrometers can stabilize the nominal sample temperature at a precision of less than 0.1 K. However, the actual sample temperature may differ from the nominal value by several degrees because the sample heating caused by high-power radio frequency pulses is not readily detected by the temperature sensors. Without correction, transfer of chemical shifts between different experiments causes problems in the data analysis. In principle, the temperature differences can be corrected by manual procedures but this is cumbersome and not fully reliable. Here, we introduce the concept of a „T-lock“, which automatically maintains the sample at the same reference temperature over the course of different NMR experiments. The T-lock works by continuously measuring the resonance frequency of a suitable spin and simultaneously adjusting the temperature control, thus locking the sample temperature at the reference value. For three different nuclei, 13C, 17O and 31P in the compounds alanine, water, and phosphate, respectively, the T-lock accuracy was found to be < 0.1 K. The use of dummy scan periods with variable lengths allows a reliable establishment of the thermal equilibrium before the acquisition of an experiment starts. PMID:19434373

  4. Automated sample preparation techniques for the determination of drug enantiomers in biological fluids using liquid chromatography with chiral stationary phases.

    PubMed

    Ceccato, A; Toussaint, B; Chiap, P; Hubert, P; Crommen, J

    1999-01-01

    The determination of drug enantiomers has become of prime importance in the field of pharmaceutical and biomedical analysis. Liquid chromatography (LC) is one of the most frequently used techniques for achieving the separation and quantitation of the enantiomers of drug compounds. In the bioanalytical field, the integrated systems present an interesting alternative to time-consuming sample preparation techniques such as liquid-liquid extraction. Solid phase extraction (SPE) on disposable cartridges, dialysis or column switching are sample preparation techniques that can be fully automated and applied to enantioselective analysis in biological fluids. The selection of the most appropriate LC mode and chiral stationary phase for enantioseparations in bioanalysis is discussed and some aspects of these automated sample preparation procedures are compared, such as selectivity, detectability, elution of the analytes from the extraction sorbent, sample volume and analyte stability.

  5. Orbital transfer vehicle launch operations study: Automated technology knowledge base, volume 4

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1986-01-01

    A simplified retrieval strategy for compiling automation-related bibliographies from NASA/RECON is presented. Two subsets of NASA Thesaurus subject terms were extracted: a primary list, which is used to obtain an initial set of citations; and a secondary list, which is used to limit or further specify a large initial set of citations. These subject term lists are presented in Appendix A as the Automated Technology Knowledge Base (ATKB) Thesaurus.

  6. A New List of Flux Transfer Events in the CLUSTER Data by Use of an Automated Technique

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sipes, T.; Karimabadi, H.; Wang, Y.; Lavraud, B.

    2007-12-01

    We have used our newly developed data mining software called MineTool for automated detection of flux transfer events (FTEs) in the CLUSTER data. Data mining techniques can be divided into two types, supervised and unsupervised. In supervised algorithms like MineTool, one teaches the algorithm using examples from labeled data. Considering the case of FTEs, the user would provide examples of FTEs as well as examples of non-FTEs and label (as FTE or non-FTE) the data. We used a list of FTEs compiled by Y. Wang to create the labeled data. We then used MineTool on this data set to develop an automated detection model for FTEs. Finally we applied this model to CLUSTER data to search for new FTEs. We have compiled a list of new FTEs which are made publicly available.

  7. Automated screening of 2D crystallization trials using transmission electron microscopy: a high-throughput tool-chain for sample preparation and microscopic analysis.

    PubMed

    Coudray, Nicolas; Hermann, Gilles; Caujolle-Bert, Daniel; Karathanou, Argyro; Erne-Brand, Françoise; Buessler, Jean-Luc; Daum, Pamela; Plitzko, Juergen M; Chami, Mohamed; Mueller, Urs; Kihl, Hubert; Urban, Jean-Philippe; Engel, Andreas; Rémigy, Hervé-W

    2011-02-01

    We have built and extensively tested a tool-chain to prepare and screen two-dimensional crystals of membrane proteins by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) at room temperature. This automated process is an extension of a new procedure described recently that allows membrane protein 2D crystallization in parallel (Iacovache et al., 2010). The system includes a gantry robot that transfers and prepares the crystalline solutions on grids suitable for TEM analysis and an entirely automated microscope that can analyze 96 grids at once without human interference. The operation of the system at the user level is solely controlled within the MATLAB environment: the commands to perform sample handling (loading/unloading in the microscope), microscope steering (magnification, focus, image acquisition, etc.) as well as automatic crystal detection have been implemented. Different types of thin samples can efficiently be screened provided that the particular detection algorithm is adapted to the specific task. Hence, operating time can be shared between multiple users. This is a major step towards the integration of transmission electron microscopy into a high throughput work-flow.

  8. Method and Apparatus for Automated Isolation of Nucleic Acids from Small Cell Samples

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sundaram, Shivshankar; Prabhakarpandian, Balabhaskar; Pant, Kapil; Wang, Yi

    2014-01-01

    RNA isolation is a ubiquitous need, driven by current emphasis on microarrays and miniaturization. With commercial systems requiring 100,000 to 1,000,000 cells for successful isolation, there is a growing need for a small-footprint, easy-to-use device that can harvest nucleic acids from much smaller cell samples (1,000 to 10,000 cells). The process of extraction of RNA from cell cultures is a complex, multi-step one, and requires timed, asynchronous operations with multiple reagents/buffers. An added complexity is the fragility of RNA (subject to degradation) and its reactivity to surface. A novel, microfluidics-based, integrated cartridge has been developed that can fully automate the complex process of RNA isolation (lyse, capture, and elute RNA) from small cell culture samples. On-cartridge cell lysis is achieved using either reagents or high-strength electric fields made possible by the miniaturized format. Traditionally, silica-based, porous-membrane formats have been used for RNA capture, requiring slow perfusion for effective capture. In this design, high efficiency capture/elution are achieved using a microsphere-based "microfluidized" format. Electrokinetic phenomena are harnessed to actively mix microspheres with the cell lysate and capture/elution buffer, providing important advantages in extraction efficiency, processing time, and operational flexibility. Successful RNA isolation was demonstrated using both suspension (HL-60) and adherent (BHK-21) cells. Novel features associated with this development are twofold. First, novel designs that execute needed processes with improved speed and efficiency were developed. These primarily encompass electric-field-driven lysis of cells. The configurations include electrode-containing constructs, or an "electrode-less" chip design, which is easy to fabricate and mitigates fouling at the electrode surface; and the "fluidized" extraction format based on electrokinetically assisted mixing and contacting of microbeads

  9. Direct analysis of pesticide residues in olive oil by on-line reversed phase liquid chromatography-gas chromatography using an automated through oven transfer adsorption desorption (TOTAD) interface.

    PubMed

    Sanchez, Raquel; Vázquez, Ana; Riquelme, David; Villén, Jesús

    2003-10-08

    A fully automated on-line reversed phase liquid chromatography-gas chromatography system is described. The system uses a prototype of the automated through oven transfer adsorption desorption interface. The system is demonstrated by presenting a new rapid method for the determination of pesticide residue in olive oil, which is injected directly with no sample pretreatment step other than filtration. Methanol:water is used as the eluent in the LC preseparation step, while the LC fraction containing the pesticide is automatically transferred to the gas chromatograph. Detection limits of pesticides varied from 0.18 to 0.44 mg/L when a flame ionization detector was used. As an example, relative standard deviation and linear calibration are presented for terbutryne.

  10. Automated delay measurement system for an Earth station for Two-Way Satellite Time and Frequency Transfer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dejong, Gerrit; Polderman, Michel C.

    1995-01-01

    The measurement of the difference of the transmit and receive delays of the signals in a Two-Way Satellite Time and Frequency Transfer (TWSTFT) Earth station is crucial for its nanosecond time transfer capability. Also, the monitoring of the change of this delay difference with time, temperature, humidity, or barometric pressure is important for improving the TWSTFT capabilities. An automated system for this purpose has been developed from the initial design at NMi-VSL. It calibrates separately the transmit and receive delays in cables, amplifiers, upconverters and downconverters, and antenna feeds. The obtained results can be applied as corrections to the TWSTFT measurement when, before and after a measurement session, a calibration session is performed. Preliminary results obtained at NMi-VSL will be shown. Also, if available, the results of a manual version of the system that is planned to be circulated in Sept. 1994 together with a USNO portable station on a calibration trip to European TWSTFT Earth stations.

  11. Umbrella sampling of proton transfer in a creatine-water system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ivchenko, Olga; Bachert, Peter; Imhof, Petra

    2014-04-01

    Proton transfer reactions are among the most common processes in chemistry and biology. Proton transfer between creatine and surrounding solvent water is underlying the chemical exchange saturation transfer used as a contrast in magnetic resonance imaging. The free energy barrier, determined by first-principles umbrella sampling simulations (EaDFT 3 kcal/mol) is in the same order of magnitude as the experimentally obtained activation energy. The underlying mechanism is a first proton transfer from the guanidinium group to the water pool, followed by a second transition where a proton is "transferred back" from the nearest water molecule to the deprotonated nitrogen atom of creatine.

  12. Random Sample Consensus: A Paradigm for Model Fitting with Applications to Image Analysis and Automated Cartography

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1980-03-01

    interpreting/smoothing data containing a significant percentage of gross errors, and thus is ideally suited for applications in automated image ... analysis where interpretation is based on the data provided by error-prone feature detectors. A major portion of the paper describes the application of

  13. Automated Gel Size Selection to Improve the Quality of Next-generation Sequencing Libraries Prepared from Environmental Water Samples.

    PubMed

    Uyaguari-Diaz, Miguel I; Slobodan, Jared R; Nesbitt, Matthew J; Croxen, Matthew A; Isaac-Renton, Judith; Prystajecky, Natalie A; Tang, Patrick

    2015-04-17

    Next-generation sequencing of environmental samples can be challenging because of the variable DNA quantity and quality in these samples. High quality DNA libraries are needed for optimal results from next-generation sequencing. Environmental samples such as water may have low quality and quantities of DNA as well as contaminants that co-precipitate with DNA. The mechanical and enzymatic processes involved in extraction and library preparation may further damage the DNA. Gel size selection enables purification and recovery of DNA fragments of a defined size for sequencing applications. Nevertheless, this task is one of the most time-consuming steps in the DNA library preparation workflow. The protocol described here enables complete automation of agarose gel loading, electrophoretic analysis, and recovery of targeted DNA fragments. In this study, we describe a high-throughput approach to prepare high quality DNA libraries from freshwater samples that can be applied also to other environmental samples. We used an indirect approach to concentrate bacterial cells from environmental freshwater samples; DNA was extracted using a commercially available DNA extraction kit, and DNA libraries were prepared using a commercial transposon-based protocol. DNA fragments of 500 to 800 bp were gel size selected using Ranger Technology, an automated electrophoresis workstation. Sequencing of the size-selected DNA libraries demonstrated significant improvements to read length and quality of the sequencing reads.

  14. Automation impact study of Army training management 2: Extension of sampling and collection of installation resource data

    SciTech Connect

    Sanquist, T.F.; McCallum, M.C.; Hunt, P.S.; Slavich, A.L.; Underwood, J.A.; Toquam, J.L.; Seaver, D.A.

    1989-05-01

    This automation impact study of Army training management (TM) was performed for the Army Development and Employment Agency (ADEA) and the Combined Arms Training Activity (CATA) by the Battelle Human Affairs Research Centers and the Pacific Northwest Laboratory. The primary objective of the study was to provide the Army with information concerning the potential costs and savings associated with automating the TM process. This study expands the sample of units surveyed in Phase I of the automation impact effort (Sanquist et al., 1988), and presents data concerning installation resource management in relation to TM. The structured interview employed in Phase I was adapted to a self-administered survey. The data collected were compatible with that of Phase I, and both were combined for analysis. Three US sites, one reserve division, one National Guard division, and one unit in the active component outside the continental US (OCONUS) (referred to in this report as forward deployed) were surveyed. The total sample size was 459, of which 337 respondents contributed the most detailed data. 20 figs., 62 tabs.

  15. Automated sample-changing robot for solution scattering experiments at the EMBL Hamburg SAXS station X33.

    PubMed

    Round, A R; Franke, D; Moritz, S; Huchler, R; Fritsche, M; Malthan, D; Klaering, R; Svergun, D I; Roessle, M

    2008-10-01

    There is a rapidly increasing interest in the use of synchrotron small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) for large-scale studies of biological macromolecules in solution, and this requires an adequate means of automating the experiment. A prototype has been developed of an automated sample changer for solution SAXS, where the solutions are kept in thermostatically controlled well plates allowing for operation with up to 192 samples. The measuring protocol involves controlled loading of protein solutions and matching buffers, followed by cleaning and drying of the cell between measurements. The system was installed and tested at the X33 beamline of the EMBL, at the storage ring DORIS-III (DESY, Hamburg), where it was used by over 50 external groups during 2007. At X33, a throughput of approximately 12 samples per hour, with a failure rate of sample loading of less than 0.5%, was observed. The feedback from users indicates that the ease of use and reliability of the user operation at the beamline were greatly improved compared with the manual filling mode. The changer is controlled by a client-server-based network protocol, locally and remotely. During the testing phase, the changer was operated in an attended mode to assess its reliability and convenience. Full integration with the beamline control software, allowing for automated data collection of all samples loaded into the machine with remote control from the user, is presently being implemented. The approach reported is not limited to synchrotron-based SAXS but can also be used on laboratory and neutron sources.

  16. Lab on valve-multisyringe flow injection system (LOV-MSFIA) for fully automated uranium determination in environmental samples.

    PubMed

    Avivar, Jessica; Ferrer, Laura; Casas, Montserrat; Cerdà, Víctor

    2011-06-15

    The hyphenation of lab-on-valve (LOV) and multisyringe flow analysis (MSFIA), coupled to a long path length liquid waveguide capillary cell (LWCC), allows the spectrophotometric determination of uranium in different types of environmental sample matrices, without any manual pre-treatment, and achieving high selectivity and sensitivity levels. On-line separation and preconcentration of uranium is carried out by means of UTEVA resin. The potential of the LOV-MSFIA makes possible the fully automation of the system by the in-line regeneration of the column. After elution, uranium(VI) is spectrophotometrically detected after reaction with arsenazo-III. The determination of levels of uranium present in environmental samples is required in order to establish an environmental control. Thus, we propose a rapid, cheap and fully automated method to determine uranium(VI) in environmental samples. The limit of detection reached is 1.9 ηg of uranium and depending on the preconcentrated volume; it results in ppt levels (10.3 ηg L(-1)). Different water sample matrices (seawater, well water, freshwater, tap water and mineral water) and a phosphogypsum sample (with natural uranium content) were satisfactorily analyzed.

  17. Automated Multiple-Sample Tray Manipulation Designed and Fabricated for Atomic Oxygen Facility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sechkar, Edward A.; Stueber, Thomas J.; Dever, Joyce A.; Banks, Bruce A.; Rutledge, Sharon K.

    2000-01-01

    Extensive improvements to increase testing capacity and flexibility and to automate the in situ Reflectance Measurement System (RMS) are in progress at the Electro-Physics Branch s Atomic Oxygen (AO) beam facility of the NASA Glenn Research Center at Lewis Field. These improvements will triple the system s capacity while placing a significant portion of the testing cycle under computer control for added reliability, repeatability, and ease of use.

  18. Micro-PIXE evaluation of radioactive cesium transfer in contaminated soil samples

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fujishiro, F.; Ishii, K.; Matsuyama, S.; Arai, H.; Ishizaki, A.; Osada, N.; Sugai, H.; Kusano, K.; Nozawa, Y.; Yamauchi, S.; Karahashi, M.; Oshikawa, S.; Kikuchi, K.; Koshio, S.; Watanabe, K.; Suzuki, Y.

    2014-01-01

    Micro-PIXE analysis has been performed on two soil samples with high cesium activity concentrations. These soil samples were contaminated by fallout from the accident at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. One exhibits a radioactive cesium transfer of ˜0.01, and the other shows a radioactive cesium transfer of less than 0.001, even though both samples have high cesium activity concentrations exceeding 10,000 Bq/kg. X-ray spectra and elemental images of the soil samples revealed the presence of chlorine, which can react with cesium to produce an inorganic soluble compound, and phosphorus-containing cesium-capturable organic compounds.

  19. Proton transfer pathways in an aspartate-water cluster sampled by a network of discrete states

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reidelbach, Marco; Betz, Fridtjof; Mäusle, Raquel Maya; Imhof, Petra

    2016-08-01

    Proton transfer reactions are complex transitions due to the size and flexibility of the hydrogen-bonded networks along which the protons may ;hop;. The combination of molecular dynamics based sampling of water positions and orientations with direct sampling of proton positions is an efficient way to capture the interplay of these degrees of freedom in a transition network. The energetically most favourable pathway in the proton transfer network computed for an aspartate-water cluster shows the pre-orientation of water molecules and aspartate side chains to be a pre-requisite for the subsequent concerted proton transfer to the product state.

  20. Determination of continuous system transfer functions from sampled pulse response data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jordan, Jay B.

    1993-09-01

    A method for determining the transfer function of a continuous system from sampled responses to single and multiple pulse excitation is presented. The method is an extension of the sampled edge response method pioneered by the theoretical work of A. Papoulis in 1962 and the application of the theory to optical systems by B. Tatian in 1965. Occasions arise when pulse rather than step function stimuli are available for system excitations. In such cases, the method presented is practical for determining the system transfer function. The use of anti- aliasing filters and estimation of non-bandwidth limited transfer functions are also discussed.

  1. A compact tritium enrichment unit for large sample volumes with automated re-filling and higher enrichment factor.

    PubMed

    Kumar, B; Han, L-F; Wassenaar, L I; Klaus, P M; Kainz, G G; Hillegonds, D; Brummer, D; Ahmad, M; Belachew, D L; Araguás, L; Aggarwal, P

    2016-12-01

    Tritium ((3)H) in natural waters is a powerful tracer of hydrological processes, but its low concentrations require electrolytic enrichment before precise measurements can be made with a liquid scintillation counter. Here, we describe a newly developed, compact tritium enrichment unit which can be used to enrich up to 2L of a water sample. This allows a high enrichment factor (>100) for measuring low (3)H contents of <0.05TU. The TEU uses a small cell (250mL) with automated re-filling and a CO2 bubbling technique to neutralize the high alkalinity of enriched samples. The enriched residual sample is retrieved from the cell under vacuum by cryogenic distillation at -20°C and the tritium enrichment factor for each sample is accurately determined by measuring pre- and post- enrichment (2)H concentrations with laser spectrometry.

  2. Automated Sampling and Imaging of Analytes Separated on Thin-Layer Chromatography Plates Using Desorption Electrospray Ionization Mass Spectrometry

    SciTech Connect

    Van Berkel, Gary J; Kertesz, Vilmos

    2006-01-01

    Modest modifications to the atmospheric sampling capillary of a commercial electrospray mass spectrometer and upgrades to an in-house developed surface positioning control software package (HandsFree TLC/MS ) were used to enable the automated sampling and imaging of analytes on and/or within large area surface substrates using desorption electrospray ionization mass spectrometry. Sampling and imaging of rhodamine dyes separated on TLC plates were used to illustrate some of the practical applications of this system. Examples are shown for user-defined spot sampling from separated bands on a TLC plate (one or multiple spots), scanning of a complete development lane (one or multiple lanes), or imaging of analyte bands in a development lane (i.e. multiple lane scans with close spacing). The post data processing and data display aspects of the software system are also discussed.

  3. Physics Mining of the CLUSTER Data Using a New Automated Technique: New List of Flux Transfer Events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sipes, T.; Karimabadi, H.; Wang, Y. W.; Lavraud, B.; Roberts, A.

    2008-12-01

    A new data mining technique called MineTool-TS is used to develop a model for automated detection of flux transfer events (FTEs) at Earth's magnetopause in the Cluster spacecraft time series data. The model classifies a given time series into one of three categories of non-FTE, magnetosheath FTE, or magnetospheric FTE. One important feature of MineTool-TS is the ability to explore the importance of each variable or combination of variables as indicators of FTEs. FTEs have traditionally been identified based on their magnetic field signatures, but here we find that some plasma variables like the perpendicular temperature can be equally strong indicators of FTEs. For example, the perpendicular ion temperature yields a model accuracy of 96%. We also find that models using GSM coordinates yield comparable accuracy to those using boundary normal coordinates. This is useful since there are regions where magnetopause models are not accurate. Another surprising result is the finding that the algorithm can distinguish between magnetosheath and magnetospheric FTEs solely based on the magnetic field data, something that experts may not do so straightforwardly based on short time series intervals. The most accurate models use combination of plasma and magnetic field variables and achieve a very high accuracy of prediction of 97%. A list of FTEs, which contains both the expert labels and the automated detection results from Cluster data during years 2001 - 2003, can be obtained from the authors.

  4. Validation of a fully automated robotic setup for preparation of whole blood samples for LC-MS toxicology analysis.

    PubMed

    Andersen, David; Rasmussen, Brian; Linnet, Kristian

    2012-05-01

    A fully automated setup was developed for preparing whole blood samples using a Tecan Evo workstation. By integrating several add-ons to the robotic platform, the flexible setup was able to prepare samples from sample tubes to a 96-well sample plate ready for injection on liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry using several preparation techniques, including protein precipitation, solid-phase extraction and centrifugation, without any manual intervention. Pipetting of a known aliquot of whole blood was achieved by integrating a balance and performing gravimetric measurements. The system was able to handle 1,073 of 1,092 (98.3%) samples of whole blood from forensic material, including postmortem samples, without any need for repeating sample preparation. Only three samples required special treatment such as dilution. The addition of internal and calibration standards were validated by pipetting a solution of Orange G and measuring the weight and absorbance. Internal standard (20 µL) was added in a multi-pipetting sequence with an accuracy of 99.9% and imprecision (coefficient of variation) of 1.6%. Calibration standards were added with high accuracy at volumes as low as 6.00 µL (±0.21 µL). The general setup of the offline sample preparation and key validation parameters of a quantitative analysis of Δ(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol is presented.

  5. Fully automated Liquid Extraction-Based Surface Sampling and Ionization Using a Chip-Based Robotic Nanoelectrospray Platform

    SciTech Connect

    Kertesz, Vilmos; Van Berkel, Gary J

    2010-01-01

    A fully automated liquid extraction-based surface sampling device utilizing an Advion NanoMate chip-based infusion nanoelectrospray ionization system is reported. Analyses were enabled for discrete spot sampling by using the Advanced User Interface of the current commercial control software. This software interface provided the parameter control necessary for the NanoMate robotic pipettor to both form and withdraw a liquid microjunction for sampling from a surface. The system was tested with three types of analytically important sample surface types, viz., spotted sample arrays on a MALDI plate, dried blood spots on paper, and whole-body thin tissue sections from drug dosed mice. The qualitative and quantitative data were consistent with previous studies employing other liquid extraction-based surface sampling techniques. The successful analyses performed here utilized the hardware and software elements already present in the NanoMate system developed to handle and analyze liquid samples. Implementation of an appropriate sample (surface) holder, a solvent reservoir, faster movement of the robotic arm, finer control over solvent flow rate when dispensing and retrieving the solution at the surface, and the ability to select any location on a surface to sample from would improve the analytical performance and utility of the platform.

  6. High-frequency, long-duration water sampling in acid mine drainage studies: a short review of current methods and recent advances in automated water samplers

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chapin, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    Hand-collected grab samples are the most common water sampling method but using grab sampling to monitor temporally variable aquatic processes such as diel metal cycling or episodic events is rarely feasible or cost-effective. Currently available automated samplers are a proven, widely used technology and typically collect up to 24 samples during a deployment. However, these automated samplers are not well suited for long-term sampling in remote areas or in freezing conditions. There is a critical need for low-cost, long-duration, high-frequency water sampling technology to improve our understanding of the geochemical response to temporally variable processes. This review article will examine recent developments in automated water sampler technology and utilize selected field data from acid mine drainage studies to illustrate the utility of high-frequency, long-duration water sampling.

  7. Sensitivity testing of trypanosome detection by PCR from whole blood samples using manual and automated DNA extraction methods.

    PubMed

    Dunlop, J; Thompson, C K; Godfrey, S S; Thompson, R C A

    2014-11-01

    Automated extraction of DNA for testing of laboratory samples is an attractive alternative to labour-intensive manual methods when higher throughput is required. However, it is important to maintain the maximum detection sensitivity possible to reduce the occurrence of type II errors (false negatives; failure to detect the target when it is present), especially in the biomedical field, where PCR is used for diagnosis. We used blood infected with known concentrations of Trypanosoma copemani to test the impact of analysis techniques on trypanosome detection sensitivity by PCR. We compared combinations of a manual and an automated DNA extraction method and two different PCR primer sets to investigate the impact of each on detection levels. Both extraction techniques and specificity of primer sets had a significant impact on detection sensitivity. Samples extracted using the same DNA extraction technique performed substantially differently for each of the separate primer sets. Type I errors (false positives; detection of the target when it is not present), produced by contaminants, were avoided with both extraction methods. This study highlights the importance of testing laboratory techniques with known samples to optimise accuracy of test results.

  8. Image processing algorithm for automated monitoring of metal transfer in double-electrode GMAW

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Zhen Zhou; Zhang, Yu Ming

    2007-07-01

    Controlled metal transfer in gas metal arc welding (GMAW) implies controllable weld quality. To understand, analyse and control the metal transfer process, the droplet should be monitored and tracked. To process the metal transfer images in double-electrode GMAW (DE-GMAW), a novel modification of GMAW, a brightness-based algorithm is proposed to locate the droplet and compute the droplet size automatically. Although this algorithm can locate the droplet with adequate accuracy, its accuracy in droplet size computation needs improvements. To this end, the correlation among adjacent images due to the droplet development is taken advantage of to improve the algorithm. Experimental results verified that the improved algorithm can automatically locate the droplets and compute the droplet size with an adequate accuracy.

  9. Sample registration software for process automation in the Neutron Activation Analysis (NAA) Facility in Malaysia nuclear agency

    SciTech Connect

    Rahman, Nur Aira Abd Yussup, Nolida; Ibrahim, Maslina Bt. Mohd; Mokhtar, Mukhlis B.; Soh Shaari, Syirrazie Bin Che; Azman, Azraf B.; Salim, Nazaratul Ashifa Bt. Abdullah; Ismail, Nadiah Binti

    2015-04-29

    Neutron Activation Analysis (NAA) had been established in Nuclear Malaysia since 1980s. Most of the procedures established were done manually including sample registration. The samples were recorded manually in a logbook and given ID number. Then all samples, standards, SRM and blank were recorded on the irradiation vial and several forms prior to irradiation. These manual procedures carried out by the NAA laboratory personnel were time consuming and not efficient. Sample registration software is developed as part of IAEA/CRP project on ‘Development of Process Automation in the Neutron Activation Analysis (NAA) Facility in Malaysia Nuclear Agency (RC17399)’. The objective of the project is to create a pc-based data entry software during sample preparation stage. This is an effective method to replace redundant manual data entries that needs to be completed by laboratory personnel. The software developed will automatically generate sample code for each sample in one batch, create printable registration forms for administration purpose, and store selected parameters that will be passed to sample analysis program. The software is developed by using National Instruments Labview 8.6.

  10. Transferring automation for large-scale development and production of Invader SNP assays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neri, Bruce P.; Ganske, R.; Isaczyszyn, W.; Beaty, Edward L.

    2000-03-01

    The Human Genome Project has led to the discovery of hundreds of thousands of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). SNPs can act as genetic markers to create high- density maps of the human genome for large-scale genetic analysis for evaluating links between genetic mutations and human diseases and for performing association studies. To create those maps, assays capable of detecting many different SNPs must be developed rapidly, as additional SNPs are discovered. When both the design of and the technology used in the assays can be partially or fully automated, the development process and the time to results can be accomplished quickly and efficiently. InvaderTM technology offers a highly sensitive signal amplification system that detects and quantifies mutations and SNPs from unamplified human genomic DNA in two sequential steps.

  11. Determination of continuous system transfer functions from sampled pulse response data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jordan, Jay B.; Watkins, Wendell R.; Palacios, Fernando R.; Billingsley, Daniel R.

    1994-12-01

    A method for determining the transfer function of a continuous system from sampled responses to single- and multiple-pulse excitation is presented. The method is an extension of the sampled-edge-response method pioneered by the theoretical work of A. Papoulis in 1962 and the application of the theory to optical systems by B. Tatian in 1965. Occasions arise when pulse rather than step-function stimuli are available for system excitations. In such cases, the method presented is useful for determining the system transfer function. The use of antialiasing filters and estimation of non-bandwidth-limited transfer functions are discussed. Practical application of the method to characterizing the system transfer function of a commercial 8- to 12-micrometers infrared imager is also presented.

  12. Method for Effective Calibration of Temperature Loggers with Automated Data Sampling and Evaluation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ljungblad, S.; Josefson, L. E.; Holmsten, M.

    2011-12-01

    A highly automated calibration method for temperature loggers is presented. By using an automated procedure, a time- and cost-efficient calibration of temperature loggers is made possible. The method is directed at loggers that lack the function/property of direct reading from a display. This type of logger has to be connected to a computer for the setting-up of the measurement and again for collection of the measurement results. During the calibration, the loggers are offline. This method has been developed for temperature loggers from Gemini Data loggers, but the software and method could be modified to suit other types of loggers as well. Calibration is performed by comparison to a reference thermometer in liquid baths; and for loggers which have external sensors, only the sensor is normally placed in the bath. Loggers with internal sensors are protected from the liquid by placing them in an exterior plastic or metallic cover, and thereafter the entire loggers are placed in the bath. A digital thermometer measures the reference temperature of the bath and transmits it to a computer by way of Bluetooth. The developed calibration software, SPTempLogger, controls the logger software, and thus the communication protocol of the logger software does not need to be known. The previous method, with manual handling of the start and termination of every measuring sequence, evaluation of the resulting data and its corresponding uncertainty components, can be replaced by this automated method. Both the logger and reference measurement data are automatically downloaded once the logger has been connected to a computer after the calibration, and the calibration software started. The data are then evaluated automatically, and by statistical analysis of the confidence coefficient and standard deviation, the temperature plateaus that the calibration includes are identified. If a number of control parameters comply with the requirements, then the correction, resolution, and short

  13. An automated sample preparation system with mini-reactor to isolate and process submegabase fragments of bacterial DNA.

    PubMed

    Mollova, Emilia T; Patil, Vishal A; Protozanova, Ekaterina; Zhang, Meng; Gilmanshin, Rudolf

    2009-08-15

    Existing methods for extraction and processing of large fragments of bacterial genomic DNA are manual, time-consuming, and prone to variability in DNA quality and recovery. To solve these problems, we have designed and built an automated fluidic system with a mini-reactor. Balancing flows through and tangential to the ultrafiltration membrane in the reactor, cells and then released DNA can be immobilized and subjected to a series of consecutive processing steps. The steps may include enzymatic reactions, tag hybridization, buffer exchange, and selective removal of cell debris and by-products of the reactions. The system can produce long DNA fragments (up to 0.5 Mb) of bacterial genome restriction digest and perform DNA tagging with fluorescent sequence-specific probes. The DNA obtained is of high purity and floating free in solution, and it can be directly analyzed by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) or used in applications requiring submegabase DNA fragments. PFGE-ready samples of DNA restriction digests can be produced in as little as 2.1 h and require less than 10(8) cells. All fluidic operations are automated except for the injection of the sample and reagents.

  14. Laboratory and field testing of an automated atmospheric particle-bound reactive oxygen species sampling-analysis system.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yungang; Hopke, Philip K; Sun, Liping; Chalupa, David C; Utell, Mark J

    2011-01-01

    In this study, various laboratory and field tests were performed to develop an effective automated particle-bound ROS sampling-analysis system. The system uses 2' 7'-dichlorofluorescin (DCFH) fluorescence method as a nonspecific, general indicator of the particle-bound ROS. A sharp-cut cyclone and a particle-into-liquid sampler (PILS) were used to collect PM(2.5) atmospheric particles into slurry produced by a DCFH-HRP solution. The laboratory results show that the DCFH and H(2)O(2) standard solutions could be kept at room temperature for at least three and eight days, respectively. The field test in Rochester, NY, shows that the average ROS concentration was 8.3 ± 2.2 nmol of equivalent H(2)O(2) m(-3) of air. The ROS concentrations were observed to be greater after foggy conditions. This study demonstrates the first practical automated sampling-analysis system to measure this ambient particle component.

  15. Automated method for simultaneous lead and strontium isotopic analysis applied to rainwater samples and airborne particulate filters (PM10).

    PubMed

    Beltrán, Blanca; Avivar, Jessica; Mola, Montserrat; Ferrer, Laura; Cerdà, Víctor; Leal, Luz O

    2013-09-03

    A new automated, sensitive, and fast system for the simultaneous online isolation and preconcentration of lead and strontium by sorption on a microcolumn packed with Sr-resin using an inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) detector was developed, hyphenating lab-on-valve (LOV) and multisyringe flow injection analysis (MSFIA). Pb and Sr are directly retained on the sorbent column and eluted with a solution of 0.05 mol L(-1) ammonium oxalate. The detection limits achieved were 0.04 ng for lead and 0.03 ng for strontium. Mass calibration curves were used since the proposed system allows the use of different sample volumes for preconcentration. Mass linear working ranges were between 0.13 and 50 ng and 0.1 and 50 ng for lead and strontium, respectively. The repeatability of the method, expressed as RSD, was 2.1% and 2.7% for Pb and Sr, respectively. Environmental samples such as rainwater and airborne particulate (PM10) filters as well as a certified reference material SLRS-4 (river water) were satisfactorily analyzed obtaining recoveries between 90 and 110% for both elements. The main features of the LOV-MSFIA-ICP-MS system proposed are the capability to renew solid phase extraction at will in a fully automated way, the remarkable stability of the column which can be reused up to 160 times, and the potential to perform isotopic analysis.

  16. Laboratory and Field Testing of an Automated Atmospheric Particle-Bound Reactive Oxygen Species Sampling-Analysis System

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Yungang; Hopke, Philip K.; Sun, Liping; Chalupa, David C.; Utell, Mark J.

    2011-01-01

    In this study, various laboratory and field tests were performed to develop an effective automated particle-bound ROS sampling-analysis system. The system uses 2′ 7′-dichlorofluorescin (DCFH) fluorescence method as a nonspecific, general indicator of the particle-bound ROS. A sharp-cut cyclone and a particle-into-liquid sampler (PILS) were used to collect PM2.5 atmospheric particles into slurry produced by a DCFH-HRP solution. The laboratory results show that the DCFH and H2O2 standard solutions could be kept at room temperature for at least three and eight days, respectively. The field test in Rochester, NY, shows that the average ROS concentration was 8.3 ± 2.2 nmol of equivalent H2O2 m−3 of air. The ROS concentrations were observed to be greater after foggy conditions. This study demonstrates the first practical automated sampling-analysis system to measure this ambient particle component. PMID:21577270

  17. Transfer of sampling methods for studies on most-at-risk populations (MARPs) in Brazil.

    PubMed

    Barbosa Júnior, Aristides; Pascom, Ana Roberta Pati; Szwarcwald, Célia Landmann; Kendall, Carl; McFarland, Willi

    2011-01-01

    The objective of this paper was to describe the process of transferring two methods for sampling most-at-risk populations: respondent-driven sampling (RDS) and time-space sampling (TSS). The article describes steps in the process, the methods used in the 10 pilot studies, and lessons learned. The process was conducted in six steps, from a state-of-the-art seminar to a workshop on writing articles with the results of the pilot studies. The principal investigators reported difficulties in the fieldwork and data analysis, independently of the pilot sampling method. One of the most important results of the transfer process is that Brazil now has more than 100 researchers able to sample MARPs using RDS or TSS. The process also enabled the construction of baselines for MARPS, thus providing a broader understanding of the dynamics of HIV infection in the country and the use of evidence to plan the national response to the epidemic in these groups.

  18. Reference values for performance on the Automated Neuropsychological Assessment Metrics V3.0 in an active duty military sample.

    PubMed

    Reeves, Dennis L; Bleiberg, Joseph; Roebuck-Spencer, Tresa; Cernich, Alison N; Schwab, Karen; Ivins, Brian; Salazar, Andres M; Harvey, Sally C; Brown, Fred H; Warden, Deborah

    2006-10-01

    The Automated Neuropsychological Assessment Metrics (ANAM) is a computerized measure of processing speed, cognitive efficiency, and memory. This study describes performance and psychometric properties of ANAM in an active duty, healthy military sample (N = 2,371) composed primarily of young (18-46 years) adult males. Rarely have neuropsychological reference values for use with individuals in the military been derived from a large, active duty military population, and this is the first computerized neuropsychological test battery with military-specific reference values. Although these results do not provide demographically corrected, formal normative data, they provide reference points for neuropsychologists and other health care providers who are using ANAM data in research or clinical settings, with patients of comparable demographics to the present sample.

  19. Pharmacokinetic Studies of Chinese Medicinal Herbs Using an Automated Blood Sampling System and Liquid Chromatography-mass Spectrometry

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Yu-Tse; Wu, Ming-Tsang; Lin, Chia-Chun; Chien, Chao-Feng; Tsai, Tung-Hu

    2012-01-01

    The safety of herbal products is one of the major concerns for the modernization of traditional Chinese medicine, and pharmacokinetic data of medicinal herbs guide us to design the rational use of the herbal formula. This article reviews the advantages of the automated blood sampling (ABS) systems for pharmacokinetic studies. In addition, three commonly used sample preparative methods, protein precipitation, liquid-liquid extraction and solid-phase extraction, are introduced. Furthermore, the definition, causes and evaluation of matrix effects in liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC/MS) analysis are demonstrated. Finally, we present our previous works as practical examples of the application of ABS systems and LC/MS for the pharmacokinetic studies of Chinese medicinal herbs. PMID:24716112

  20. Design and practices for use of automated drilling and sample handling in MARTE while minimizing terrestrial and cross contamination.

    PubMed

    Miller, David P; Bonaccorsi, Rosalba; Davis, Kiel

    2008-10-01

    Mars Astrobiology Research and Technology Experiment (MARTE) investigators used an automated drill and sample processing hardware to detect and categorize life-forms found in subsurface rock at Río Tinto, Spain. For the science to be successful, it was necessary for the biomass from other sources--whether from previously processed samples (cross contamination) or the terrestrial environment (forward contamination)-to be insignificant. The hardware and practices used in MARTE were designed around this problem. Here, we describe some of the design issues that were faced and classify them into problems that are unique to terrestrial tests versus problems that would also exist for a system that was flown to Mars. Assessment of the biomass at various stages in the sample handling process revealed mixed results; the instrument design seemed to minimize cross contamination, but contamination from the surrounding environment sometimes made its way onto the surface of samples. Techniques used during the MARTE Río Tinto project, such as facing the sample, appear to remove this environmental contamination without introducing significant cross contamination from previous samples.

  1. Fully automated determination of cannabinoids in hair samples using headspace solid-phase microextraction and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Musshoff, Frank; Junker, Heike P; Lachenmeier, Dirk W; Kroener, Lars; Madea, Burkhard

    2002-01-01

    This paper describes a fully automated procedure using alkaline hydrolysis and headspace solid-phase microextraction (HS-SPME) followed by on-fiber derivatization and gas chromatographic-mass spectrometric (GC-MS) detection of cannabinoids in human hair samples. Ten milligrams of hair was washed with deionized water, petroleum ether, and dichloromethane. After the addition of deuterated internal standards the sample was hydrolyzed with sodium hydroxide and directly submitted to HS-SPME. After absorption of analytes for an on-fiber derivatization procedure the fiber was directly placed into the headspace of a second vial containing N-methyl-N-trimethylsilyltrifluoroacetamide (MSTFA) before GC-MS analysis. The limit of detection was 0.05 ng/mg for delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), 0.08 ng/mg for cannabidiol (CBD), and 0.14 ng/mg for cannabinol (CBN). Absolute recoveries were in the range between 0.3 and 7.5%. Linearity was proved over a range from 0.1 to 20 ng/mg with coefficients of correlation from 0.998 to 0.999. Validation of the whole procedure revealed excellent results. In comparison with conventional methods of hair analysis this automated HS-SPME-GC-MS procedure is substantially faster. It is easy to perform without use of solvents and with minimal sample quantities, but with the same degree of sensitivity and reproducibility. The applicability was demonstrated by the analysis of 25 hair samples from several forensic cases. The following concentration ranges were determined: THC 0.29-2.20 (mean 1.7) ng/mg, CBN 0.55-4.54 (mean 1.2) ng/mg, and CBD 0.53-18.36 (mean 1.3) ng/mg. 11-nor-Delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol-9-carboxylic acid could not be detected with this method.

  2. Screening urine samples for the absence of urinary tract infection using the sediMAX automated microscopy analyser.

    PubMed

    Sterry-Blunt, Rosanne E; S Randall, Karen; J Doughton, Michael; H Aliyu, Sani; Enoch, David A

    2015-06-01

    Urinalysis culminates in a workload skew within the clinical microbiology laboratory. Routine processing involves screening via manual microscopy or biochemical dipstick measurement, followed by culture for each sample. Despite this, as many as 80% of specimens are reported as negative; thus, there is vast wastage of resources and time, as well as delayed turnaround time of results as numerous negative cultures fulfil their required incubation time. Automation provides the potential for streamlining sample screening by efficiently (>30% sample exclusion) and reliably [negative predictive value (NPV) ≥ 95%] ruling out those likely to be negative, whilst also reducing resource usage and hands-on time. The present study explored this idea by using the sediMAX automated microscopy urinalysis platform. We prospectively collected and processed 1411 non-selected samples directly after routine laboratory processing. The results from this study showed multiple optimum cut-off values for microscopy. However, although optimum cut-off values permitted rule-out of 40.1% of specimens, an associated 87.5% NPV was lower than the acceptable limit of 95%. Sensitivity and specificity of leukocytes and bacteria in determining urinary tract infection was assessed by receiver operator characteristic curves with area under the curve values found to be 0.697 [95% confidence interval (CI): 0.665-0.729] and 0.587 (95% CI: 0.551-0.623), respectively. We suggested that the sediMAX was not suitable for use as a rule-out screen prior to culture and further validation work must be carried out before routine use of the analyser.

  3. STATISTICAL EVALUATION OF SMALL SCALE MIXING DEMONSTRATION SAMPLING AND BATCH TRANSFER PERFORMANCE - 12093

    SciTech Connect

    GREER DA; THIEN MG

    2012-01-12

    The ability to effectively mix, sample, certify, and deliver consistent batches of High Level Waste (HLW) feed from the Hanford Double Shell Tanks (DST) to the Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant (WTP) presents a significant mission risk with potential to impact mission length and the quantity of HLW glass produced. DOE's Tank Operations Contractor, Washington River Protection Solutions (WRPS) has previously presented the results of mixing performance in two different sizes of small scale DSTs to support scale up estimates of full scale DST mixing performance. Currently, sufficient sampling of DSTs is one of the largest programmatic risks that could prevent timely delivery of high level waste to the WTP. WRPS has performed small scale mixing and sampling demonstrations to study the ability to sufficiently sample the tanks. The statistical evaluation of the demonstration results which lead to the conclusion that the two scales of small DST are behaving similarly and that full scale performance is predictable will be presented. This work is essential to reduce the risk of requiring a new dedicated feed sampling facility and will guide future optimization work to ensure the waste feed delivery mission will be accomplished successfully. This paper will focus on the analytical data collected from mixing, sampling, and batch transfer testing from the small scale mixing demonstration tanks and how those data are being interpreted to begin to understand the relationship between samples taken prior to transfer and samples from the subsequent batches transferred. An overview of the types of data collected and examples of typical raw data will be provided. The paper will then discuss the processing and manipulation of the data which is necessary to begin evaluating sampling and batch transfer performance. This discussion will also include the evaluation of the analytical measurement capability with regard to the simulant material used in the demonstration tests. The

  4. Solid recovered fuels in the cement industry--semi-automated sample preparation unit as a means for facilitated practical application.

    PubMed

    Aldrian, Alexia; Sarc, Renato; Pomberger, Roland; Lorber, Karl E; Sipple, Ernst-Michael

    2016-03-01

    One of the challenges for the cement industry is the quality assurance of alternative fuel (e.g., solid recovered fuel, SRF) in co-incineration plants--especially for inhomogeneous alternative fuels with large particle sizes (d95⩾100 mm), which will gain even more importance in the substitution of conventional fuels due to low production costs. Existing standards for sampling and sample preparation do not cover the challenges resulting from these kinds of materials. A possible approach to ensure quality monitoring is shown in the present contribution. For this, a specially manufactured, automated comminution and sample divider device was installed at a cement plant in Rohožnik. In order to prove its practical suitability with methods according to current standards, the sampling and sample preparation process were validated for alternative fuel with a grain size >30 mm (i.e., d95=approximately 100 mm), so-called 'Hotdisc SRF'. Therefore, series of samples were taken and analysed. A comparison of the analysis results with the yearly average values obtained through a reference investigation route showed good accordance. Further investigations during the validation process also showed that segregation or enrichment of material throughout the comminution plant does not occur. The results also demonstrate that compliance with legal standards regarding the minimum sample amount is not sufficient for inhomogeneous and coarse particle size alternative fuels. Instead, higher sample amounts after the first particle size reduction step are strongly recommended in order to gain a representative laboratory sample.

  5. An Automated Laboratory-scale Methodology for the Generation of Sheared Mammalian Cell Culture Samples.

    PubMed

    Joseph, Adrian; Goldrick, Stephen; Mollet, Michael; Turner, Richard; Bender, Jean; Gruber, David; Farid, Suzanne S; Titchener-Hooker, Nigel

    2017-02-24

    Continuous disk-stack centrifugation is typically used for the removal of cells and cellular debris from mammalian cell culture broths at manufacturing-scale. The use of scale-down methods to characterise disk-stack centrifugation performance enables substantial reductions in material requirements and allows a much wider design space to be tested than is currently possible at pilot-scale. The process of scaling down centrifugation has historically been challenging due to the difficulties in mimicking the Energy Dissipation Rates (EDRs) in typical machines. This paper describes an alternative and easy-to-assemble automated capillary-based methodology to generate levels of EDRs consistent with those found in a continuous disk-stack centrifuge. Variations in EDR were achieved through changes in capillary internal diameter and the flow rate of operation through the capillary. The EDRs found to match the levels of shear in the feed zone of a pilot-scale centrifuge using the experimental method developed in this paper (2.4×10(5) W/Kg) are consistent with those obtained through previously published computational fluid dynamic (CFD) studies (2.0×10(5) W/Kg). Furthermore, this methodology can be incorporated into existing scale-down methods to model the process performance of continuous disk-stack centrifuges. This was demonstrated through the characterisation of culture hold time, culture temperature and EDRs on centrate quality.

  6. Automated sample preparation for monitoring groundwater pollution by carbamate insecticides and their transformation products.

    PubMed

    Chiron, S; Valverde, A; Fernandez-Alba, A; Barceló, D

    1995-01-01

    We investigated automated on-line solid-phase extraction (SPE) followed by liquid chromatographic (LC) techniques for monitoring carbamates and their transformation products. Analytical determinations were performed by LC with UV or postcolumn fluorescence detection (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Method 531.1 for carbamate insecticides) after preconcentration with on-line SPE using C18 Empore extraction disks. On-line SPE/LC/thermospray mass spectrometry with time-scheduled selected-ion monitoring was used as confirmatory method. The method was used to determine pesticide traces in well waters of a typical aquifer in the Almeria area (Andalucia, south of Spain) from March 1993 to February 1994. The major pollutants, found in highest amounts, were carbofuran, methiocarb, and methomyl, at levels of 0.32, 0.3, and 0.8 micrograms/L, respectively. According to results of seasonal variation studies, pollution by carbamate insecticides is sporadic and exceeds the limit of 0.5 micrograms/L for total pesticides allowed by the European Economic Community Drinking Water Directive only twice a year. 3-Hydroxycarbofuran and methiocarb sulfone also were detected, showing the importance of including the main toxic break-down products of carbamate insecticides in future monitoring programs.

  7. Automated radioanalytical system incorporating microwave-assisted sample preparation, chemical separation, and online radiometric detection for the monitoring of total 99Tc in nuclear waste processing streams.

    PubMed

    Egorov, Oleg B; O'Hara, Matthew J; Grate, Jay W

    2012-04-03

    An automated fluidic instrument is described that rapidly determines the total (99)Tc content of aged nuclear waste samples, where the matrix is chemically and radiologically complex and the existing speciation of the (99)Tc is variable. The monitor links microwave-assisted sample preparation with an automated anion exchange column separation and detection using a flow-through solid scintillator detector. The sample preparation steps acidify the sample, decompose organics, and convert all Tc species to the pertechnetate anion. The column-based anion exchange procedure separates the pertechnetate from the complex sample matrix, so that radiometric detection can provide accurate measurement of (99)Tc. We developed a preprogrammed spike addition procedure to automatically determine matrix-matched calibration. The overall measurement efficiency that is determined simultaneously provides a self-diagnostic parameter for the radiochemical separation and overall instrument function. Continuous, automated operation was demonstrated over the course of 54 h, which resulted in the analysis of 215 samples plus 54 hly spike-addition samples, with consistent overall measurement efficiency for the operation of the monitor. A sample can be processed and measured automatically in just 12.5 min with a detection limit of 23.5 Bq/mL of (99)Tc in low activity waste (0.495 mL sample volume), with better than 10% RSD precision at concentrations above the quantification limit. This rapid automated analysis method was developed to support nuclear waste processing operations planned for the Hanford nuclear site.

  8. Revisiting the Hubble sequence in the SDSS DR7 spectroscopic sample: a publicly available Bayesian automated classification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huertas-Company, M.; Aguerri, J. A. L.; Bernardi, M.; Mei, S.; Sánchez Almeida, J.

    2011-01-01

    We present an automated morphological classification in 4 types (E, S0, Sab, Scd) of ~700 000 galaxies from the SDSS DR7 spectroscopic sample based on support vector machines. The main new property of the classification is that we associate a probability to each galaxy of being in the four morphological classes instead of assigning a single class. The classification is therefore better adapted to nature where we expect a continuous transition between different morphological types. The algorithm is trained with a visual classification and then compared to several independent visual classifications including the Galaxy Zoo first-release catalog. We find a very good correlation between the automated classification and classical visual ones. The compiled catalog is intended for use in different applications and is therefore freely available through a dedicated webpage* and soon from the CasJobs database. Full catalog is only available in electronic form at CDS via anonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (130.79.128.5) or via http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz-bin/qcat?J/A+A/525/A157 or via http://gepicom04.obspm.fr/sdss_morphology/Morphology_2010.html

  9. Small Scale Mixing Demonstration Batch Transfer and Sampling Performance of Simulated HLW - 12307

    SciTech Connect

    Jensen, Jesse; Townson, Paul; Vanatta, Matt

    2012-07-01

    The ability to effectively mix, sample, certify, and deliver consistent batches of High Level Waste (HLW) feed from the Hanford Double Shell Tanks (DST) to the Waste treatment Plant (WTP) has been recognized as a significant mission risk with potential to impact mission length and the quantity of HLW glass produced. At the end of 2009 DOE's Tank Operations Contractor, Washington River Protection Solutions (WRPS), awarded a contract to EnergySolutions to design, fabricate and operate a demonstration platform called the Small Scale Mixing Demonstration (SSMD) to establish pre-transfer sampling capacity, and batch transfer performance data at two different scales. This data will be used to examine the baseline capacity for a tank mixed via rotational jet mixers to transfer consistent or bounding batches, and provide scale up information to predict full scale operational performance. This information will then in turn be used to define the baseline capacity of such a system to transfer and sample batches sent to WTP. The Small Scale Mixing Demonstration (SSMD) platform consists of 43'' and 120'' diameter clear acrylic test vessels, each equipped with two scaled jet mixer pump assemblies, and all supporting vessels, controls, services, and simulant make up facilities. All tank internals have been modeled including the air lift circulators (ALCs), the steam heating coil, and the radius between the wall and floor. The test vessels are set up to simulate the transfer of HLW out of a mixed tank, and collect a pre-transfer sample in a manner similar to the proposed baseline configuration. The collected material is submitted to an NQA-1 laboratory for chemical analysis. Previous work has been done to assess tank mixing performance at both scales. This work involved a combination of unique instruments to understand the three dimensional distribution of solids using a combination of Coriolis meter measurements, in situ chord length distribution measurements, and electro

  10. Automated liquid chromatographic determination of atenolol in plasma using dialysis and trace enrichment on a cation-exchange precolumn for sample handling.

    PubMed

    Chiap, P; Buraglia, B M; Ceccato, A; Hubert, P; Crommen, J

    2000-02-28

    A fully automated method involving dialysis combined with trace enrichment was developed for the liquid chromatographic (LC) determination of atenolol, a hydrophilic beta-blocking agent, in human plasma. The plasma samples were dialysed on a cellulose acetate membrane and the dialysate was reconcentrated on a short trace enrichment column (TEC) packed with a strong cation-exchange material. All sample handling operations can be executed automatically by a sample processor (ASTED system). After TEC conditioning, the plasma sample, to which the internal standard (sotalol, another hydrophilic beta-blocker) was automatically added, was introduced in the donor channel and dialysed in the static/pulsed mode. The dialysis liquid consisted of 4.3 mM phosphoric acid. When the dialysis process was discontinued, the analytes were eluted from the TEC in the back-flush mode by the LC mobile phase and transferred to the analytical column, packed with octyl silica. The LC mobile phase consisted of phosphate buffer, pH 7.0-methanol (81:19; v/v) with 1-octanesulfonate. Atenolol and the internal standard were monitored photometrically at 225 nm. The different parameters influencing the dialysis and trace enrichment processes were optimised with respect to analyte recovery. The influence of two different kinds of cation-exchange material on analyte recovery and peak efficiency was also studied. The method was then validated in the concentration range 25-1000 ng/ml. The mean recovery for atenolol was 65% and the limit of quantitation was 25 ng/ml.

  11. An automated thermophoretic soot sampling device for laboratory-scale high-pressure flames.

    PubMed

    Leschowski, M; Dreier, T; Schulz, C

    2014-04-01

    Studying soot particle morphology in high-pressure flames via thermophoretic sampling critically depends on sampling precision, speed, and reproducibility. This is mainly limited by the challenges of applying pneumatically driven devices for burner chamber pressures higher than the pneumatic pressure. We present a pneumatically driven device for high-pressure applications up to 90 bars. The novelty is to separate the pneumatic driver section from the high-pressure environment in the burner chamber. The device was tested by sampling soot from a laminar high-pressure flame at 20 bars.

  12. Accelerated Evaluation of Automated Vehicles Safety in Lane-Change Scenarios Based on Importance Sampling Techniques.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Ding; Lam, Henry; Peng, Huei; Bao, Shan; LeBlanc, David J; Nobukawa, Kazutoshi; Pan, Christopher S

    2016-08-05

    Automated vehicles (AVs) must be thoroughly evaluated before their release and deployment. A widely used evaluation approach is the Naturalistic-Field Operational Test (N-FOT), which tests prototype vehicles directly on the public roads. Due to the low exposure to safety-critical scenarios, N-FOTs are time consuming and expensive to conduct. In this paper, we propose an accelerated evaluation approach for AVs. The results can be used to generate motions of the other primary vehicles to accelerate the verification of AVs in simulations and controlled experiments. Frontal collision due to unsafe cut-ins is the target crash type of this paper. Human-controlled vehicles making unsafe lane changes are modeled as the primary disturbance to AVs based on data collected by the University of Michigan Safety Pilot Model Deployment Program. The cut-in scenarios are generated based on skewed statistics of collected human driver behaviors, which generate risky testing scenarios while preserving the statistical information so that the safety benefits of AVs in nonaccelerated cases can be accurately estimated. The cross-entropy method is used to recursively search for the optimal skewing parameters. The frequencies of the occurrences of conflicts, crashes, and injuries are estimated for a modeled AV, and the achieved accelerated rate is around 2000 to 20 000. In other words, in the accelerated simulations, driving for 1000 miles will expose the AV with challenging scenarios that will take about 2 to 20 million miles of real-world driving to encounter. This technique thus has the potential to greatly reduce the development and validation time for AVs.

  13. Accelerated Evaluation of Automated Vehicles Safety in Lane-Change Scenarios Based on Importance Sampling Techniques

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Ding; Lam, Henry; Peng, Huei; Bao, Shan; LeBlanc, David J.; Nobukawa, Kazutoshi; Pan, Christopher S.

    2016-01-01

    Automated vehicles (AVs) must be thoroughly evaluated before their release and deployment. A widely used evaluation approach is the Naturalistic-Field Operational Test (N-FOT), which tests prototype vehicles directly on the public roads. Due to the low exposure to safety-critical scenarios, N-FOTs are time consuming and expensive to conduct. In this paper, we propose an accelerated evaluation approach for AVs. The results can be used to generate motions of the other primary vehicles to accelerate the verification of AVs in simulations and controlled experiments. Frontal collision due to unsafe cut-ins is the target crash type of this paper. Human-controlled vehicles making unsafe lane changes are modeled as the primary disturbance to AVs based on data collected by the University of Michigan Safety Pilot Model Deployment Program. The cut-in scenarios are generated based on skewed statistics of collected human driver behaviors, which generate risky testing scenarios while preserving the statistical information so that the safety benefits of AVs in nonaccelerated cases can be accurately estimated. The cross-entropy method is used to recursively search for the optimal skewing parameters. The frequencies of the occurrences of conflicts, crashes, and injuries are estimated for a modeled AV, and the achieved accelerated rate is around 2000 to 20 000. In other words, in the accelerated simulations, driving for 1000 miles will expose the AV with challenging scenarios that will take about 2 to 20 million miles of real-world driving to encounter. This technique thus has the potential to greatly reduce the development and validation time for AVs. PMID:27840592

  14. Investigation of Mercury Wet Deposition Physicochemistry in the Ohio River Valley through Automated Sequential Sampling

    EPA Science Inventory

    Intra-storm variability and soluble fractionation was explored for summer-time rain events in Steubenville, Ohio to evaluate the physical processes controlling mercury (Hg) in wet deposition in this industrialized region. Comprehensive precipitation sample collection was conducte...

  15. Automated transmission line fault analysis using synchronized sampling at two ends

    SciTech Connect

    Kezunovic, M.; Perunicic, B.

    1996-02-01

    This paper introduces a new approach to fault analysis using synchronized sampling. A digital fault recorder with Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite receiver is the source of data for this approach. Fault analysis functions, such as fault detection, classification and location are implemented for a transmission line using synchronized samples from two ends of a line. This technique can be extremely fast, selective and accurate, providing fault analysis performance that can not easily be matched by other known techniques.

  16. Automated transmission line fault analysis using synchronized sampling at two ends

    SciTech Connect

    Kezunovic, M.; Perunicic, B.

    1995-12-31

    This paper introduces a new approach to fault analysis using synchronized sampling. A digital fault recorder with Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite receiver is the source of data for this approach. Fault analysis functions, such as fault detection, classification and location are implemented for a transmission line using synchronized samples from two ends of a line. This technique can be extremely fast, selective and accurate, providing fault analysis performance that can not easily be matched by other known techniques.

  17. High-throughput automated microfluidic sample preparation for accurate microbial genomics

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Soohong; De Jonghe, Joachim; Kulesa, Anthony B.; Feldman, David; Vatanen, Tommi; Bhattacharyya, Roby P.; Berdy, Brittany; Gomez, James; Nolan, Jill; Epstein, Slava; Blainey, Paul C.

    2017-01-01

    Low-cost shotgun DNA sequencing is transforming the microbial sciences. Sequencing instruments are so effective that sample preparation is now the key limiting factor. Here, we introduce a microfluidic sample preparation platform that integrates the key steps in cells to sequence library sample preparation for up to 96 samples and reduces DNA input requirements 100-fold while maintaining or improving data quality. The general-purpose microarchitecture we demonstrate supports workflows with arbitrary numbers of reaction and clean-up or capture steps. By reducing the sample quantity requirements, we enabled low-input (∼10,000 cells) whole-genome shotgun (WGS) sequencing of Mycobacterium tuberculosis and soil micro-colonies with superior results. We also leveraged the enhanced throughput to sequence ∼400 clinical Pseudomonas aeruginosa libraries and demonstrate excellent single-nucleotide polymorphism detection performance that explained phenotypically observed antibiotic resistance. Fully-integrated lab-on-chip sample preparation overcomes technical barriers to enable broader deployment of genomics across many basic research and translational applications. PMID:28128213

  18. Development of a full automation solid phase microextraction method for investigating the partition coefficient of organic pollutant in complex sample.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Ruifen; Lin, Wei; Wen, Sijia; Zhu, Fang; Luan, Tiangang; Ouyang, Gangfeng

    2015-08-07

    A fully automated solid phase microextraction (SPME) depletion method was developed to study the partition coefficient of organic compound between complex matrix and water sample. The SPME depletion process was conducted by pre-loading the fiber with a specific amount of organic compounds from a proposed standard gas generation vial, and then desorbing the fiber into the targeted samples. Based on the proposed method, the partition coefficients (Kmatrix) of 4 polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) between humic acid (HA)/hydroxypropyl-β-cyclodextrin (β-HPCD) and aqueous sample were determined. The results showed that the logKmatrix of 4 PAHs with HA and β-HPCD ranged from 3.19 to 4.08, and 2.45 to 3.15, respectively. In addition, the logKmatrix values decreased about 0.12-0.27 log units for different PAHs for every 10°C increase in temperature. The effect of temperature on the partition coefficient followed van't Hoff plot, and the partition coefficient at any temperature can be predicted based on the plot. Furthermore, the proposed method was applied for the real biological fluid analysis. The partition coefficients of 6 PAHs between the complex matrices in the fetal bovine serum and water were determined, and compared to ones obtained from SPME extraction method. The result demonstrated that the proposed method can be applied to determine the sorption coefficients of hydrophobic compounds between complex matrix and water in a variety of samples.

  19. Use of single particle aerosol mass spectrometry for the automated nondestructive identification of drugs in multicomponent samples.

    PubMed

    Martin, Audrey N; Farquar, George R; Steele, Paul T; Jones, A Daniel; Frank, Matthias

    2009-11-15

    In this work, single particle aerosol mass spectrometry (SPAMS) was used to identify the active drug ingredients in samples of multicomponent over-the-counter (OTC) drug tablets with minimal damage to the tablets. OTC drug tablets in various formulations were analyzed including single active ingredient tablets and multi-ingredient tablets. Using a sampling apparatus developed in-house, micrometer-sized particles were simultaneously dislodged from tablets and introduced to the SPAMS, where dual-polarity mass spectra were obtained from individual particles. Active ingredients were identified from the parent ions and fragment ions formed from each sample, and alarm files were developed for each active ingredient, allowing successful automated identification of each compound in a mixture. The alarm algorithm developed for SPAMS correctly identified all drug compounds in all single-ingredient and multi-ingredient tablets studied. A further study demonstrated the ability of this technique to identify the active ingredient in a single tablet analyzed in the presence of several other nonidentical tablets. In situ measurements were also made by sampling directly from a drug sample in its original bottle. A single tablet embedded in 11 identical tablets of different composition was detected in this manner. Overall, this work demonstrates the ability of the SPAMS technique to detect a target drug compound both in complex tablets, i.e., multidrug ingredient tablets, and complex sampling environments, i.e., multitablet sampling sources. The technique is practically nondestructive, leaving the characteristic shape, color, and imprint of a tablet intact for further analysis. Applications of this technique may include forensic and pharmaceutical analysis.

  20. Low-Cost 3D Printers Enable High-Quality and Automated Sample Preparation and Molecular Detection.

    PubMed

    Chan, Kamfai; Coen, Mauricio; Hardick, Justin; Gaydos, Charlotte A; Wong, Kah-Yat; Smith, Clayton; Wilson, Scott A; Vayugundla, Siva Praneeth; Wong, Season

    2016-01-01

    Most molecular diagnostic assays require upfront sample preparation steps to isolate the target's nucleic acids, followed by its amplification and detection using various nucleic acid amplification techniques. Because molecular diagnostic methods are generally rather difficult to perform manually without highly trained users, automated and integrated systems are highly desirable but too costly for use at point-of-care or low-resource settings. Here, we showcase the development of a low-cost and rapid nucleic acid isolation and amplification platform by modifying entry-level 3D printers that cost between $400 and $750. Our modifications consisted of replacing the extruder with a tip-comb attachment that houses magnets to conduct magnetic particle-based nucleic acid extraction. We then programmed the 3D printer to conduct motions that can perform high-quality extraction protocols. Up to 12 samples can be processed simultaneously in under 13 minutes and the efficiency of nucleic acid isolation matches well against gold-standard spin-column-based extraction technology. Additionally, we used the 3D printer's heated bed to supply heat to perform water bath-based polymerase chain reactions (PCRs). Using another attachment to hold PCR tubes, the 3D printer was programmed to automate the process of shuttling PCR tubes between water baths. By eliminating the temperature ramping needed in most commercial thermal cyclers, the run time of a 35-cycle PCR protocol was shortened by 33%. This article demonstrates that for applications in resource-limited settings, expensive nucleic acid extraction devices and thermal cyclers that are used in many central laboratories can be potentially replaced by a device modified from inexpensive entry-level 3D printers.

  1. Low-Cost 3D Printers Enable High-Quality and Automated Sample Preparation and Molecular Detection

    PubMed Central

    Chan, Kamfai; Coen, Mauricio; Hardick, Justin; Gaydos, Charlotte A.; Wong, Kah-Yat; Smith, Clayton; Wilson, Scott A.; Vayugundla, Siva Praneeth; Wong, Season

    2016-01-01

    Most molecular diagnostic assays require upfront sample preparation steps to isolate the target’s nucleic acids, followed by its amplification and detection using various nucleic acid amplification techniques. Because molecular diagnostic methods are generally rather difficult to perform manually without highly trained users, automated and integrated systems are highly desirable but too costly for use at point-of-care or low-resource settings. Here, we showcase the development of a low-cost and rapid nucleic acid isolation and amplification platform by modifying entry-level 3D printers that cost between $400 and $750. Our modifications consisted of replacing the extruder with a tip-comb attachment that houses magnets to conduct magnetic particle-based nucleic acid extraction. We then programmed the 3D printer to conduct motions that can perform high-quality extraction protocols. Up to 12 samples can be processed simultaneously in under 13 minutes and the efficiency of nucleic acid isolation matches well against gold-standard spin-column-based extraction technology. Additionally, we used the 3D printer’s heated bed to supply heat to perform water bath-based polymerase chain reactions (PCRs). Using another attachment to hold PCR tubes, the 3D printer was programmed to automate the process of shuttling PCR tubes between water baths. By eliminating the temperature ramping needed in most commercial thermal cyclers, the run time of a 35-cycle PCR protocol was shortened by 33%. This article demonstrates that for applications in resource-limited settings, expensive nucleic acid extraction devices and thermal cyclers that are used in many central laboratories can be potentially replaced by a device modified from inexpensive entry-level 3D printers. PMID:27362424

  2. Automated Hydrogen/Deuterium Exchange Electron Transfer Dissociation High Resolution Mass Spectrometry Measured at Single-Amide Resolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Landgraf, Rachelle R.; Chalmers, Michael J.; Griffin, Patrick R.

    2012-02-01

    Hydrogen deuterium exchange mass spectrometry (HDX-MS) is a well established method for the measurement of solution-phase deuterium incorporation into proteins, which can provide insight into protein conformational mobility. However, most HDX measurements are constrained to regions of the protein where pepsin proteolysis allows detection at peptide resolution. Recently, single-amide resolution deuterium incorporation has been achieved by limiting gas-phase scrambling in the mass spectrometer. This was accomplished by employing a combination of soft ionization and desolvation conditions coupled with the radical-driven fragmentation technique electron transfer dissociation (ETD). Here, a hybrid LTQ-Orbitrap XL is systematically evaluated for its utility in providing single-amide deuterium incorporation for differential HDX analysis of a nuclear receptor upon binding small molecule ligands. We are able to show that instrumental parameters can be optimized to minimize scrambling and can be incorporated into an established and fully automated HDX platform making differential single-amide HDX possible for bottom-up analysis of complex systems. We have applied this system to determine differential single amide resolution HDX data for the peroxizome proliferator activated receptor bound with two ligands of interest.

  3. Automation of preparation of nonmetallic samples for analysis by atomic absorption and inductively coupled plasma spectrometry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wittmann, A.; Willay, G.

    1986-01-01

    For a rapid preparation of solutions intended for analysis by inductively coupled plasma emission spectrometry or atomic absorption spectrometry, an automatic device called Plasmasol was developed. This apparatus used the property of nonwettability of glassy C to fuse the sample in an appropriate flux. The sample-flux mixture is placed in a composite crucible, then heated at high temperature, swirled until full dissolution is achieved, and then poured into a water-filled beaker. After acid addition, dissolution of the melt, and filling to the mark, the solution is ready for analysis. The analytical results obtained, either for oxide samples or for prereduced iron ores show that the solutions prepared with this device are undistinguished from those obtained by manual dissolutions done by acid digestion or by high temperature fusion. Preparation reproducibility and analytical tests illustrate the performance of Plasmasol.

  4. Simple sample transfer technique by internally expanded desorptive flow for needle trap devices.

    PubMed

    Eom, In-Yong; Pawliszyn, Janusz

    2008-07-01

    Needle trap devices (NTDs) are improving in simplicity and usefulness for sampling volatile organic compounds (VOCs) since their first introduction in early 2000s. Three different sample transfer methods have been reported for NTDs to date. All methods use thermal desorption and simultaneously provide desorptive flow to transfer desorbed VOCs into a GC separation column. For NTDs having 'side holes', GC carrier gas enters a 'side hole' and passes through sorbent particles to carry desorbed VOCs, while for NTD not having a 'side hole', clean air as desorptive flow can be provided through a needle head by a air tight syringe to sweep out desorbed VOCs or water vapor has been reported recently to be used as desorptive flow. We report here a new simple sample transfer technique for NTDs, in which no side holes and an external desorptive flow are required. When an NTD enriched by a mixture of benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylene (BTEX) or n-alkane mixture (C6-C15) is exposed to the hot zone of GC injector, the expanding air above the packed sorbent transfers the desorbed compounds from the sorbent to the GC column. This internal air expansion results in clean and sharp desorption profiles for BTEX and n-alkane mixture with no carryover. The effect of desorption temperature, desorption time, and overhead volumes was studied. Decane having vapor pressure of approximately 1 Torr at 20 degrees C showed approximately 1% carryover at the moderate thermal desorption condition (0.5 min at 250 degrees C).

  5. A self-contained polymeric cartridge for automated biological sample preparation.

    PubMed

    Xu, Guolin; Lee, Daniel Yoke San; Xie, Hong; Chiew, Deon; Hsieh, Tseng-Ming; Ali, Emril Mohamed; Lun Looi, Xing; Li, Mo-Huang; Ying, Jackie Y

    2011-09-01

    Sample preparation is one of the most crucial processes for nucleic acids based disease diagnosis. Several steps are required for nucleic acids extraction, impurity washes, and DNA/RNA elution. Careful sample preparation is vital to the obtaining of reliable diagnosis, especially with low copies of pathogens and cells. This paper describes a low-cost, disposable lab cartridge for automatic sample preparation, which is capable of handling flexible sample volumes of 10 μl to 1 ml. This plastic cartridge contains all the necessary reagents for pathogen and cell lysis, DNA/RNA extraction, impurity washes, DNA/RNA elution and waste processing in a completely sealed cartridge. The entire sample preparation processes are automatically conducted within the cartridge on a desktop unit using a pneumatic fluid manipulation approach. Reagents transportation is achieved with a combination of push and pull forces (with compressed air and vacuum, respectively), which are connected to the pneumatic inlets at the bottom of the cartridge. These pneumatic forces are regulated by pinch valve manifold and two pneumatic syringe pumps within the desktop unit. The performance of this pneumatic reagent delivery method was examined. We have demonstrated the capability of the on-cartridge RNA extraction and cancer-specific gene amplification from 10 copies of MCF-7 breast cancer cells. The on-cartridge DNA recovery efficiency was 54-63%, which was comparable to or better than the conventional manual approach using silica spin column. The lab cartridge would be suitable for integration with lab-chip real-time polymerase chain reaction devices in providing a portable system for decentralized disease diagnosis.

  6. On-line sample preparation for the automated sequential determination of HG in blood, urine and waste water

    SciTech Connect

    Schlemmer, G.; Erler, W.

    1995-12-31

    The accurate determination of mercury in environmental and clinical samples such as waste water, urine or blood with the cold vapour technique requires a complete oxidation and stabilization of mercury in the liquid phase prior to its reduction. It has been shown that the oxidation of all relevant organo-mercury compounds in this type of matrix can be achieved on-line by an appropriate oxidizing agent used in an open microwave system coupled to a flow injection cold vapour system. The various matrices, however, are handled individually. Blood samples, for example are diluted and injected into a neutral carrier. The acid to start the reaction is added on-line only shortly before the sample enters the heating zone of the microwave oven. Urine and waste water on the other hand are acidified already in the autosampler vessel and the microwave digestion is used for completion of the oxidation only. In this application, blood, urine and waste water, three most commonly encountered matrices, were analyzed using the same FIAS and microwave parameters in an automated run. The time for one individual measurement including the on-line deposition is about 90s. The detection limits obtained with a mercury specific detector is about 20 nm/L for urine and waste water and 100 ng/L for blood.

  7. Automated sample-scanning methods for radiation damage mitigation and diffraction-based centering of macromolecular crystals.

    PubMed

    Hilgart, Mark C; Sanishvili, Ruslan; Ogata, Craig M; Becker, Michael; Venugopalan, Nagarajan; Stepanov, Sergey; Makarov, Oleg; Smith, Janet L; Fischetti, Robert F

    2011-09-01

    Automated scanning capabilities have been added to the data acquisition software, JBluIce-EPICS, at the National Institute of General Medical Sciences and the National Cancer Institute Collaborative Access Team (GM/CA CAT) at the Advanced Photon Source. A `raster' feature enables sample centering via diffraction scanning over two-dimensional grids of simple rectangular or complex polygonal shape. The feature is used to locate crystals that are optically invisible owing to their small size or are visually obfuscated owing to properties of the sample mount. The raster feature is also used to identify the best-diffracting regions of large inhomogeneous crystals. Low-dose diffraction images taken at grid positions are automatically processed in real time to provide a quick quality ranking of potential data-collection sites. A `vector collect' feature mitigates the effects of radiation damage by scanning the sample along a user-defined three-dimensional vector during data collection to maximize the use of the crystal volume and the quality of the collected data. These features are integrated into the JBluIce-EPICS data acquisition software developed at GM/CA CAT where they are used in combination with a robust mini-beam of rapidly changeable diameter from 5 µm to 20 µm. The powerful software-hardware combination is being applied to challenging problems in structural biology.

  8. Development of an Automated and Sensitive Microfluidic Device for Capturing and Characterizing Circulating Tumor Cells (CTCs) from Clinical Blood Samples.

    PubMed

    Gogoi, Priya; Sepehri, Saedeh; Zhou, Yi; Gorin, Michael A; Paolillo, Carmela; Capoluongo, Ettore; Gleason, Kyle; Payne, Austin; Boniface, Brian; Cristofanilli, Massimo; Morgan, Todd M; Fortina, Paolo; Pienta, Kenneth J; Handique, Kalyan; Wang, Yixin

    2016-01-01

    Current analysis of circulating tumor cells (CTCs) is hindered by sub-optimal sensitivity and specificity of devices or assays as well as lack of capability of characterization of CTCs with clinical biomarkers. Here, we validate a novel technology to enrich and characterize CTCs from blood samples of patients with metastatic breast, prostate and colorectal cancers using a microfluidic chip which is processed by using an automated staining and scanning system from sample preparation to image processing. The Celsee system allowed for the detection of CTCs with apparent high sensitivity and specificity (94% sensitivity and 100% specificity). Moreover, the system facilitated rapid capture of CTCs from blood samples and also allowed for downstream characterization of the captured cells by immunohistochemistry, DNA and mRNA fluorescence in-situ hybridization (FISH). In a subset of patients with prostate cancer we compared the technology with a FDA-approved CTC device, CellSearch and found a higher degree of sensitivity with the Celsee instrument. In conclusion, the integrated Celsee system represents a promising CTC technology for enumeration and molecular characterization.

  9. Development of an Automated and Sensitive Microfluidic Device for Capturing and Characterizing Circulating Tumor Cells (CTCs) from Clinical Blood Samples

    PubMed Central

    Gogoi, Priya; Sepehri, Saedeh; Zhou, Yi; Gorin, Michael A.; Paolillo, Carmela; Capoluongo, Ettore; Gleason, Kyle; Payne, Austin; Boniface, Brian; Cristofanilli, Massimo; Morgan, Todd M.; Fortina, Paolo; Pienta, Kenneth J.; Handique, Kalyan; Wang, Yixin

    2016-01-01

    Current analysis of circulating tumor cells (CTCs) is hindered by sub-optimal sensitivity and specificity of devices or assays as well as lack of capability of characterization of CTCs with clinical biomarkers. Here, we validate a novel technology to enrich and characterize CTCs from blood samples of patients with metastatic breast, prostate and colorectal cancers using a microfluidic chip which is processed by using an automated staining and scanning system from sample preparation to image processing. The Celsee system allowed for the detection of CTCs with apparent high sensitivity and specificity (94% sensitivity and 100% specificity). Moreover, the system facilitated rapid capture of CTCs from blood samples and also allowed for downstream characterization of the captured cells by immunohistochemistry, DNA and mRNA fluorescence in-situ hybridization (FISH). In a subset of patients with prostate cancer we compared the technology with a FDA-approved CTC device, CellSearch and found a higher degree of sensitivity with the Celsee instrument. In conclusion, the integrated Celsee system represents a promising CTC technology for enumeration and molecular characterization. PMID:26808060

  10. A Simple Method for Automated Solid Phase Extraction of Water Samples for Immunological Analysis of Small Pollutants.

    PubMed

    Heub, Sarah; Tscharner, Noe; Kehl, Florian; Dittrich, Petra S; Follonier, Stéphane; Barbe, Laurent

    2016-01-01

    A new method for solid phase extraction (SPE) of environmental water samples is proposed. The developed prototype is cost-efficient and user friendly, and enables to perform rapid, automated and simple SPE. The pre-concentrated solution is compatible with analysis by immunoassay, with a low organic solvent content. A method is described for the extraction and pre-concentration of natural hormone 17β-estradiol in 100 ml water samples. Reverse phase SPE is performed with octadecyl-silica sorbent and elution is done with 200 µl of methanol 50% v/v. Eluent is diluted by adding di-water to lower the amount of methanol. After preparing manually the SPE column, the overall procedure is performed automatically within 1 hr. At the end of the process, estradiol concentration is measured by using a commercial enzyme-linked immune-sorbent assay (ELISA). 100-fold pre-concentration is achieved and the methanol content in only 10% v/v. Full recoveries of the molecule are achieved with 1 ng/L spiked de-ionized and synthetic sea water samples.

  11. Automated on-line preconcentration of palladium on different sorbents and its determination in environmental samples.

    PubMed

    Sánchez Rojas, Fuensanta; Bosch Ojeda, Catalina; Cano Pavón, José Manuel

    2007-01-01

    The determination of noble metals in environmental samples is of increasing importance. Palladium is often employed as a catalyst in chemical industry and is also used with platinum and rhodium in motor car catalytic converters which might cause environmental pollution problems. Two different sorbents for palladium preconcentration in different samples were investigated: silica gel functionalized with 1,5-bis(di-2-pyridyl)methylene tbiocarbohydrazide (DPTH-gel) and [1,5-Bis(2-pyridyl)-3-sulphophenyI methylene thiocarbonohydrazide (PSTH) immobilised on an anion-exchange resin (Dowex lx8-200)]. The sorbents were tested in a micro-column, placed in the auto-sampler arm, at the flow rate 2.8 mL min(-1). Elution was performed with 4 M HCl and 4 M HNO3, respectively. Satisfactory results were obtained for two sorbents.

  12. Improving semi-automated segmentation by integrating learning with active sampling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huo, Jing; Okada, Kazunori; Brown, Matthew

    2012-02-01

    Interactive segmentation algorithms such as GrowCut usually require quite a few user interactions to perform well, and have poor repeatability. In this study, we developed a novel technique to boost the performance of the interactive segmentation method GrowCut involving: 1) a novel "focused sampling" approach for supervised learning, as opposed to conventional random sampling; 2) boosting GrowCut using the machine learned results. We applied the proposed technique to the glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) brain tumor segmentation, and evaluated on a dataset of ten cases from a multiple center pharmaceutical drug trial. The results showed that the proposed system has the potential to reduce user interaction while maintaining similar segmentation accuracy.

  13. High-throughput pharmacokinetics screen of VLA-4 antagonists by LC/MS/MS coupled with automated solid-phase extraction sample preparation.

    PubMed

    Tong, Xinchun S; Wang, Junying; Zheng, Song; Pivnichny, James V

    2004-06-29

    Automation of plasma sample preparation for pharmacokinetic studies on VLA-4 antagonists has been achieved by using 96-well format solid-phase extraction operated by Beckman Coulter Biomek 2000 liquid handling system. A Biomek 2000 robot is used to perform fully automated plasma sample preparation tasks that include serial dilution of standard solutions, pipetting plasma samples, addition of standard and internal standard solutions, performing solid-phase extraction (SPE) on Waters OASIS 96-well plates. This automated sample preparation process takes less than 2 h for a typical pharmacokinetic study, including 51 samples, 24 standards, 9 quality controls, and 3-6 dose checks with minimal manual intervention. Extensive validation has been made to ensure the accuracy and reliability of this method. A two-stage vacuum pressure controller has been incorporated in the program to improve SPE efficiency. This automated SPE sample preparation approach combined with liquid chromatography coupled with the high sensitivity and selectivity of tandem mass spectrometry (LC/MS)/MS has been successfully applied on both individual and cassette dosing for pharmacokinetic screening of a large number of VLA-4 antagonists with a limit of quantitation in the range of 1-5 ng/ml. Consequently, a significant throughput increase has been achieved along with an elimination of tedious labor and its consequential tendency to produce errors.

  14. Steady-State Vacuum Ultraviolet Exposure Facility With Automated Lamp Calibration and Sample Positioning Fabricated

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sechkar, Edward A.; Steuber, Thomas J.; Banks, Bruce A.; Dever, Joyce A.

    2000-01-01

    The Next Generation Space Telescope (NGST) will be placed in an orbit that will subject it to constant solar radiation during its planned 10-year mission. A sunshield will be necessary to passively cool the telescope, protecting it from the Sun s energy and assuring proper operating temperatures for the telescope s instruments. This sunshield will be composed of metalized polymer multilayer insulation with an outer polymer membrane (12 to 25 mm in thickness) that will be metalized on the back to assure maximum reflectance of sunlight. The sunshield must maintain mechanical integrity and optical properties for the full 10 years. This durability requirement is most challenging for the outermost, constantly solar-facing polymer membrane of the sunshield. One of the potential threats to the membrane material s durability is from vacuum ultraviolet (VUV) radiation in wavelengths below 200 nm. Such radiation can be absorbed in the bulk of these thin polymer membrane materials and degrade the polymer s optical and mechanical properties. So that a suitable membrane material can be selected that demonstrates durability to solar VUV radiation, ground-based testing of candidate materials must be conducted to simulate the total 10- year VUV exposure expected during the Next Generation Space Telescope mission. The Steady State Vacuum Ultraviolet exposure facility was designed and fabricated at the NASA Glenn Research Center at Lewis Field to provide unattended 24-hr exposure of candidate materials to VUV radiation of 3 to 5 times the Sun s intensity in the wavelength range of 115 to 200 nm. The facility s chamber, which maintains a pressure of approximately 5 10(exp -6) torr, is divided into three individual exposure cells, each with a separate VUV source and sample-positioning mechanism. The three test cells are separated by a water-cooled copper shield plate assembly to minimize thermal effects from adjacent test cells. Part of the interior sample positioning mechanism of one

  15. Quantification of 4-beta-hydroxycholesterol in human plasma using automated sample preparation and LC-ESI-MS/MS analysis.

    PubMed

    Goodenough, Angela K; Onorato, Joelle M; Ouyang, Zheng; Chang, Shu; Rodrigues, A David; Kasichayanula, Sreeneeranj; Huang, Shu-Pang; Turley, Wesley; Burrell, Richard; Bifano, Marc; Jemal, Mohammed; LaCreta, Frank; Tymiak, Adrienne; Wang-Iverson, David

    2011-09-19

    It has recently been proposed that plasma levels of 4β-hydroxycholesterol (4βHC) may be indicative of cytochrome P450 3A4 (P450 3A) activity and therefore could be used to probe for P450 3A-mediated drug-drug interactions. With this in mind, we describe a highly sensitive and precise liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization-tandem mass spectrometry method for the measurement of 4βHC in human plasma with a lower limit of quantification established at 2 ng/mL using 50 μL of plasma. The entire sample preparation scheme including saponification and derivatization of 4βHC to the corresponding dipicolinyl ester (DPE) was completed in less than 8 h using an automated sample preparation scheme enabling higher-throughput capabilities. Chromatographic resolution of 4βHC from 4α-hydroxycholesterol and other endogenous isobaric species was achieved in 11-min using an isocratic gradient on a C18 column. Because of endogenous concentrations of 4βHC in plasma, a stable isotope labeled (SIL) analogue, d7-4βHC, was used as a surrogate analyte and measured in the standard curve and quality control samples prepared in plasma. A second SIL analogue, d4-4βHC, was used as the internal standard. The intraday and interday accuracy for the assay was within 6% of nominal concentrations, and the precision for these measurements was less than 5% relative standard deviation. Rigorous stability assessments demonstrated adequate stability of endogenous 4βHC in plasma and the corresponding DPE derivative for the analysis of clinical study samples. The results from clinical samples following treatment with a potent P450 3A inducer (rifampin) or inhibitor (ketoconazole) are reported and demonstrate the potential future application for this highly precise and robust analytical assay.

  16. Automated detection of cracks on the faying surface within high-load transfer bolted speciments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wheatley, Gregory; Kollgaard, Jeffrey R.

    2003-07-01

    Boeing is currently conducting evaluation testing of the Comparative Vacuum Monitoring (CVMTM) system offered by Structural Monitoring Systems, Ltd (SMS). Initial testing has been conducted by SMS, with further test lab validations to be performed at Boeing in Seattle. Testing has been conducted on dog bone type specimens that have been cut at the center line. A notch was cut at one of the bolt holes and a CVM sensor installed on both sides of the plate. The doublers were added and a single line of 4 bolts along the longitudinal center line were used to attach the doubler plates to the dog bone type specimen. In this way, a high load transfer situation exists between the two halves of the dog bone specimen and the doubler plates. The CVM sensors are slightly over 0.004" (0.1mm) in thickness and are installed directly upon the faying surface of the dog bone specimen. Testing was conducted on an Instron 8501 Servohydraulic testing machine at the Department of Mechanical and Materials Engineering, University of Western Australia. The standard laboratory equipment offered by Structural Monitoring Systems, Ltd was used for crack detection. This equipment included the Kvac (vacuum supply) and the Sim8 (flow meter). The Sim8 was electrically connected to the Instron machine so that as soon as a crack was detected, fatigue loading was halted. The aim of the experiment was for CVM to detect a crack on the faying surface of the specimens at a length of 0.050" +/- 0.010". This was accomplished successfully. CVM has been developed on the principle that a small volume maintained at a low vacuum is extremely sensitive to any ingress of air. In addition to the load bearing sensors described above, self-adhesive, elastomeric sensors with fine channels on the adhesive face have been developed. When the sensors have been adhered to the structure under test, these fine channels, and the structure itself, form a manifold of galleries alternately at low vacuum and atmospheric pressure

  17. Evaluation of an Automated Instrument for Inoculating and Spreading Samples onto Agar Plates.

    PubMed

    Glasson, J H; Guthrie, L H; Nielsen, D J; Bethell, F A

    2008-04-01

    The findings from a preliminary assessment of a new instrument designed for the inoculation and spreading of specimens for microbiological analysis onto agar plates are described. The study found that the instrument was able to select full or biplates from a number of input cassettes, each containing different agar types. Samples were then inoculated by the instrument onto the agar surfaces and spread by a novel plastic applicator. Following this, the instrument labeled the plates and sorted them into a number of specified output stations. It was found that the instrument was able to inoculate and spread samples over a greater proportion of the agar plate surface than the manual loop-to-plate method. As a consequence, up to 44% more usable colonies were produced per plate from clinical specimens and standard cultures. Viable counts showed that the instrument was able to detect as few as 10(2) CFU/ml in fluids and also facilitated the enumeration of organisms, particularly in specimens such as urine.

  18. Automated Image Sampling and Classification Can Be Used to Explore Perceived Naturalness of Urban Spaces.

    PubMed

    Hyam, Roger

    2017-01-01

    The psychological restorative effects of exposure to nature are well established and extend to just viewing of images of nature. A previous study has shown that Perceived Naturalness (PN) of images correlates with their restorative value. This study tests whether it is possible to detect degree of PN of images using an image classifier. It takes images that have been scored by humans for PN (including a subset that have been assessed for restorative value) and passes them through the Google Vision API image classification service. The resulting labels are assigned to broad semantic classes to create a Calculated Semantic Naturalness (CSN) metric for each image. It was found that CSN correlates with PN. CSN was then calculated for a geospatial sampling of Google Street View images across the city of Edinburgh. CSN was found to correlate with PN in this sample also indicating the technique may be useful in large scale studies. Because CSN correlates with PN which correlates with restorativeness it is suggested that CSN or a similar measure may be useful in automatically detecting restorative images and locations. In an exploratory aside CSN was not found to correlate with an indicator of socioeconomic deprivation.

  19. Improved automation of dissolved organic carbon sampling for organic-rich surface waters.

    PubMed

    Grayson, Richard P; Holden, Joseph

    2016-02-01

    In-situ UV-Vis spectrophotometers offer the potential for improved estimates of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) fluxes for organic-rich systems such as peatlands because they are able to sample and log DOC proxies automatically through time at low cost. In turn, this could enable improved total carbon budget estimates for peatlands. The ability of such instruments to accurately measure DOC depends on a number of factors, not least of which is how absorbance measurements relate to DOC and the environmental conditions. Here we test the ability of a S::can Spectro::lyser™ for measuring DOC in peatland streams with routinely high DOC concentrations. Through analysis of the spectral response data collected by the instrument we have been able to accurately measure DOC up to 66 mg L(-1), which is more than double the original upper calibration limit for this particular instrument. A linear regression modelling approach resulted in an accuracy >95%. The greatest accuracy was achieved when absorbance values for several different wavelengths were used at the same time in the model. However, an accuracy >90% was achieved using absorbance values for a single wavelength to predict DOC concentration. Our calculations indicated that, for organic-rich systems, in-situ measurement with a scanning spectrophotometer can improve fluvial DOC flux estimates by 6 to 8% compared with traditional sampling methods. Thus, our techniques pave the way for improved long-term carbon budget calculations from organic-rich systems such as peatlands.

  20. Automated Image Sampling and Classification Can Be Used to Explore Perceived Naturalness of Urban Spaces

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    The psychological restorative effects of exposure to nature are well established and extend to just viewing of images of nature. A previous study has shown that Perceived Naturalness (PN) of images correlates with their restorative value. This study tests whether it is possible to detect degree of PN of images using an image classifier. It takes images that have been scored by humans for PN (including a subset that have been assessed for restorative value) and passes them through the Google Vision API image classification service. The resulting labels are assigned to broad semantic classes to create a Calculated Semantic Naturalness (CSN) metric for each image. It was found that CSN correlates with PN. CSN was then calculated for a geospatial sampling of Google Street View images across the city of Edinburgh. CSN was found to correlate with PN in this sample also indicating the technique may be useful in large scale studies. Because CSN correlates with PN which correlates with restorativeness it is suggested that CSN or a similar measure may be useful in automatically detecting restorative images and locations. In an exploratory aside CSN was not found to correlate with an indicator of socioeconomic deprivation. PMID:28052110

  1. Evaluation of the appropriate time period between sampling and analyzing for automated urinalysis

    PubMed Central

    Dolscheid-Pommerich, Ramona C.; Klarmann-Schulz, Ute; Conrad, Rupert; Stoffel-Wagner, Birgit; Zur, Berndt

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Preanalytical specifications for urinalysis must be strictly adhered to avoid false interpretations. Aim of the present study is to examine whether the preanalytical factor ‘time point of analysis’ significantly influences stability of urine samples for urine particle and dipstick analysis. Materials and methods In 321 pathological spontaneous urine samples, urine dipstick (Urisys™2400, Combur-10-Test™strips, Roche Diagnostics, Mannheim, Germany) and particle analysis (UF-1000 i™, Sysmex, Norderstedt, Germany) were performed within 90 min, 120 min and 240 min after urine collection. Results For urine particle analysis, a significant increase in conductivity (120 vs. 90 min: P < 0.001, 240 vs. 90 min: P < 0.001) and a significant decrease in WBC (120 vs. 90 min P < 0.001, 240 vs. 90 min P < 0.001), RBC (120 vs. 90 min P < 0.001, 240 vs. 90 min P < 0.001), casts (120 vs. 90 min P < 0.001, 240 vs. 90 min P < 0.001) and epithelial cells (120 vs. 90 min P = 0.610, 240 vs. 90 min P = 0.041) were found. There were no significant changes for bacteria. Regarding urine dipstick analysis, misclassification rates between measurements were significant for pH (120 vs. 90 min P < 0.001, 240 vs. 90 min P < 0.001), leukocytes (120 vs. 90 min P < 0.001, 240 vs. 90 min P < 0.001), nitrite (120 vs. 90 min P < 0.001, 240 vs. 90 min P < 0.001), protein (120 vs. 90 min P < 0.001, 240 vs. 90 min P<0.001), ketone (120 vs. 90 min P < 0.001, 240 vs. 90 min P < 0.001), blood (120 vs. 90 min P < 0.001, 240 vs. 90 min P < 0.001), specific gravity (120 vs. 90 min P < 0.001, 240 vs. 90 min P < 0.001) and urobilinogen (120 vs. 90 min, P = 0.031). Misclassification rates were not significant for glucose and bilirubin. Conclusion Most parameters critically depend on the time window between sampling and analysis. Our study stresses the importance of adherence to early time points in urinalysis (within 90 min). PMID:26981022

  2. Evaluation of automated sample preparation, retention time locked gas chromatography-mass spectrometry and data analysis methods for the metabolomic study of Arabidopsis species.

    PubMed

    Gu, Qun; David, Frank; Lynen, Frédéric; Rumpel, Klaus; Dugardeyn, Jasper; Van Der Straeten, Dominique; Xu, Guowang; Sandra, Pat

    2011-05-27

    In this paper, automated sample preparation, retention time locked gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) and data analysis methods for the metabolomics study were evaluated. A miniaturized and automated derivatisation method using sequential oximation and silylation was applied to a polar extract of 4 types (2 types×2 ages) of Arabidopsis thaliana, a popular model organism often used in plant sciences and genetics. Automation of the derivatisation process offers excellent repeatability, and the time between sample preparation and analysis was short and constant, reducing artifact formation. Retention time locked (RTL) gas chromatography-mass spectrometry was used, resulting in reproducible retention times and GC-MS profiles. Two approaches were used for data analysis. XCMS followed by principal component analysis (approach 1) and AMDIS deconvolution combined with a commercially available program (Mass Profiler Professional) followed by principal component analysis (approach 2) were compared. Several features that were up- or down-regulated in the different types were detected.

  3. Dried Blood Spot Proteomics: Surface Extraction of Endogenous Proteins Coupled with Automated Sample Preparation and Mass Spectrometry Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, Nicholas J.; Bunch, Josephine; Cooper, Helen J.

    2013-08-01

    Dried blood spots offer many advantages as a sample format including ease and safety of transport and handling. To date, the majority of mass spectrometry analyses of dried blood spots have focused on small molecules or hemoglobin. However, dried blood spots are a potentially rich source of protein biomarkers, an area that has been overlooked. To address this issue, we have applied an untargeted bottom-up proteomics approach to the analysis of dried blood spots. We present an automated and integrated method for extraction of endogenous proteins from the surface of dried blood spots and sample preparation via trypsin digestion by use of the Advion Biosciences Triversa Nanomate robotic platform. Liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry of the resulting digests enabled identification of 120 proteins from a single dried blood spot. The proteins identified cross a concentration range of four orders of magnitude. The method is evaluated and the results discussed in terms of the proteins identified and their potential use as biomarkers in screening programs.

  4. Automated extraction and quantitation of oncogenic HPV genotypes from cervical samples by a real-time PCR-based system.

    PubMed

    Broccolo, Francesco; Cocuzza, Clementina E

    2008-03-01

    Accurate laboratory assays for the diagnosis of persistent oncogenic HPV infection are being recognized increasingly as essential for clinical management of women with cervical precancerous lesions. HPV viral load has been suggested to be a surrogate marker of persistent infection. Four independent real-time quantitative TaqMan PCR assays were developed for: HPV-16, -31, -18 and/or -45 and -33 and/or -52, -58, -67. The assays had a wide dynamic range of detection and a high degree of accuracy, repeatability and reproducibility. In order to minimize material and hands-on time, automated nucleic acid extraction was performed using a 96-well plate format integrated into a robotic liquid handler workstation. The performance of the TaqMan assays for HPV identification was assessed by comparing results with those obtained by means of PCR using consensus primers (GP5+/GP6+) and sequencing (296 samples) and INNO-LiPA analysis (31 samples). Good agreement was found generally between results obtained by real-time PCR assays and GP(+)-PCR system (kappa statistic=0.91). In conclusion, this study describes four newly developed real-time PCR assays that provide a reliable and high-throughput method for detection of not only HPV DNA but also HPV activity of the most common oncogenic HPV types in cervical specimens.

  5. Adjustable virtual pore-size filter for automated sample preparation using acoustic radiation force

    SciTech Connect

    Jung, B; Fisher, K; Ness, K; Rose, K; Mariella, R

    2008-05-22

    We present a rapid and robust size-based separation method for high throughput microfluidic devices using acoustic radiation force. We developed a finite element modeling tool to predict the two-dimensional acoustic radiation force field perpendicular to the flow direction in microfluidic devices. Here we compare the results from this model with experimental parametric studies including variations of the PZT driving frequencies and voltages as well as various particle sizes and compressidensities. These experimental parametric studies also provide insight into the development of an adjustable 'virtual' pore-size filter as well as optimal operating conditions for various microparticle sizes. We demonstrated the separation of Saccharomyces cerevisiae and MS2 bacteriophage using acoustic focusing. The acoustic radiation force did not affect the MS2 viruses, and their concentration profile remained unchanged. With optimized design of our microfluidic flow system we were able to achieve yields of > 90% for the MS2 with > 80% of the S. cerevisiae being removed in this continuous-flow sample preparation device.

  6. Non-uniform sampling knife-edge method for camera modulation transfer function measurement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duan, Yaxuan; Xue, Xun; Chen, Yongquan; Tian, Liude; Zhao, Jianke; Gao, Limin

    2016-11-01

    Traditional slanted knife-edge method experiences large errors in the camera modulation transfer function (MTF) due to tilt angle error in the knife-edge resulting in non-uniform sampling of the edge spread function. In order to resolve this problem, a non -uniform sampling knife-edge method for camera MTF measurement is proposed. By applying a simple direct calculation of the Fourier transform of the derivative for the non-uniform sampling data, the camera super-sampled MTF results are obtained. Theoretical simulations for images with and without noise under different tilt angle errors are run using the proposed method. It is demonstrated that the MTF results are insensitive to tilt angle errors. To verify the accuracy of the proposed method, an experimental setup for camera MTF measurement is established. Measurement results show that the proposed method is superior to traditional methods, and improves the universality of the slanted knife-edge method for camera MTF measurement.

  7. Liquid chromatography coupled with multi-channel electrochemical detection for the determination of daidzin in rat blood sampled by an automated blood sampling system.

    PubMed

    Tian, Feifei; Zhu, Yongxin; Long, Hong; Cregor, Meloney; Xie, Fuming; Kissinger, Candice B; Kissinger, Peter T

    2002-05-25

    Daidzin, a soy-derived biologically active natural product, has been reported to inhibit mitochondrial aldehyde dehydrogenase and suppress ethanol intake. This paper describes a method for the determination of daidzin in rat blood. After administration of daidzin, blood samples were periodically collected from awake, freely moving animals by a Culex automated blood sampler. Daidzin was extracted from 50 microl of diluted blood (blood and saline at a ratio of 1:1) with ethyl acetate. Chromatographic separation was achieved within 12 min using a microbore C(18) (100 x 1.0 mm) 3 microm column with a mobile phase containing 20 mM sodium acetate, 0.25 mM EDTA, pH 4.3, 4% methanol and 11% acetonitrile at a flow-rate of 90 microl/min. Detection was attained using a four-channel electrochemical detector with glassy carbon electrodes using oxidation potentials of +1100, 950, 850, 750 mV vs. Ag/AgCl. The limit of detection for daidzin in rat plasma was 5 ng/ml at a signal-to-noise ratio of 3:1. The extraction recovery of daidzin from rat plasma was over 74%. Linearity was obtained for the range of 25-1000 ng/ml. The intra- and inter-assay precisions were in the ranges of 2.7-6.6 and 1.9-3.7%, respectively. This method is suitable to routine in vivo monitoring of daidzin in rat plasma.

  8. Development testing of the chemical analysis automation polychlorinated biphenyl standard analysis method during surface soils sampling at the David Witherspoon 1630 site

    SciTech Connect

    Hunt, M.A.; Klatt, L.N.; Thompson, D.H.

    1998-02-01

    The Chemical Analysis Automation (CAA) project is developing standardized, software-driven, site-deployable robotic laboratory systems with the objective of lowering the per-sample analysis cost, decreasing sample turnaround time, and minimizing human exposure to hazardous and radioactive materials associated with DOE remediation projects. The first integrated system developed by the CAA project is designed to determine polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB) content in soil matrices. A demonstration and development testing of this system was conducted in conjuction with surface soil characterization activities at the David Witherspoon 1630 Site in Knoxville, Tennessee. The PCB system consists of five hardware standard laboratory modules (SLMs), one software SLM, the task sequence controller (TSC), and the human-computer interface (HCI). Four of the hardware SLMs included a four-channel Soxhlet extractor, a high-volume concentrator, a column cleanup, and a gas chromatograph. These SLMs performed the sample preparation and measurement steps within the total analysis protocol. The fifth hardware module was a robot that transports samples between the SLMs and the required consumable supplies to the SLMs. The software SLM is an automated data interpretation module that receives raw data from the gas chromatograph SLM and analyzes the data to yield the analyte information. The TSC is a software system that provides the scheduling, management of system resources, and the coordination of all SLM activities. The HCI is a graphical user interface that presents the automated laboratory to the analyst in terms of the analytical procedures and methods. Human control of the automated laboratory is accomplished via the HCI. Sample information required for processing by the automated laboratory is entered through the HCI. Information related to the sample and the system status is presented to the analyst via graphical icons.

  9. Re-Emergence of Under-Selected Stimuli, after the Extinction of Over-Selected Stimuli in an Automated Match to Samples Procedure

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Broomfield, Laura; McHugh, Louise; Reed, Phil

    2008-01-01

    Stimulus over-selectivity occurs when one of potentially many aspects of the environment comes to control behaviour. In two experiments, adults with no developmental disabilities, were trained and tested in an automated match to samples (MTS) paradigm. In Experiment 1, participants completed two conditions, in one of which the over-selected…

  10. An automated serial Grinding, Imaging and Reconstruction Instrument (GIRI) for digital modeling of samples with weak density contrasts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maloof, A. C.; Samuels, B.; Mehra, A.; Spatzier, A.

    2013-12-01

    We present the first results from the new Princeton University Grinder Lab dedicated to the digital reconstruction of hidden objects through serial grinding and imaging. The purpose of a destructive technique like serial grinding is to facilitate the discovery of embedded objects with weak density contrasts outside the sensitivity limits of X-ray CT-scanning devices (Feature segmentation and object reconstruction are based on color and textural contrasts in the stack of images rather than density). The device we have developed is a retrofit imaging station designed for a precision CNC surface. The instrument is capable of processing a sample 20x25x40 cm in size at 1 micron resolution in x, y and z axes. Directly coupled to the vertical axis of the grinder is an 80 megapixel medium format camera and specialty macro lens capable of imaging a 4x5 cm surface at 5 micron resolution in full 16 bit color. The system is automated such that after each surface grind, the sample is cleaned, travels to the opposite end of the bed from the grinder wheel, is photographed, and then moved back to the grinding position. This process establishes a comprehensive archive of the specimen that is used for digital reconstruction and quantitative analysis. For example, in one night, a 7 cm thick sample can be imaged completely at 20 micron horizontal and vertical resolution without human supervision. Some of the initial results we present here include new digital reconstructions of early animal fossils, 3D sedimentary bedforms, the size and shape distribution of chondrules in chondritic meteorites, and the porosity structure of carbonate cemented reservoir rocks.

  11. Another Look at the Mechanisms of Hydride Transfer Enzymes from Quantum and Classical Transition Path Sampling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dzierlenga, Michael; Antoniou, Dimitri; Schwartz, Steven

    2015-03-01

    The mechanisms involved in enzymatic hydride transfer have been studies for years but questions remain, due to the difficulty in determining the participation of protein dynamics and quantum effects, especially hydrogen tunneling. In this study, we use transition path sampling (TPS) with normal mode centroid molecular dynamics (CMD) to calculate the barrier to hydride transfer in yeast alcohol dehydrogenase (YADH) and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH). Calculation of the work applied to the hydride during the reaction allows for observation of the change in barrier height due to inclusion of quantum effects. Additionally, the same calculations were performed using deuterium as the transferring particle to validate our methods with experimentally measured kinetic isotope effects. The change in barrier height in YADH upon inclusion of quantum effects is indicative of a zero-point energy contribution, and is evidence that the protein mediates a near-barrierless transfer of the rate-limiting hydride. Calculation of kinetic isotope effects using the average difference in barrier between hydride and deuteride agreed well with experimental results. The authors acknowledge the support of the National Institutes of Health Grants GM068036 and GM102226.

  12. Microwave-Assisted Sample Treatment in a Fully Automated Flow-Based Instrument: Oxidation of Reduced Technetium Species in the Analysis of Total Technetium-99 in Caustic Aged Nuclear Waste Samples

    SciTech Connect

    Egorov, Oleg B.; O'Hara, Matthew J.; Grate, Jay W.

    2004-07-15

    An automated flow-based instrument for microwave-assisted treatment of liquid samples has been developed and characterized. The instrument utilizes a flow-through reaction vessel design that facilitates the addition of multiple reagents during sample treatment, removal of the gaseous reaction products, and enables quantitative removal of liquids from the reaction vessel for carryover-free operations. Matrix modification and speciation control chemistries that are required for the radiochemical determination of total 99Tc in caustic aged nuclear waste samples have been investigated. A rapid and quantitative oxidation procedure using peroxydisulfate in acidic solution was developed to convert reduced technetium species to pertechnetate in samples with high content of reducing organics. The effectiveness of the automated sample treatment procedures has been validated in the radiochemical analysis of total 99Tc in caustic aged nuclear waste matrixes from the Hanford site.

  13. In vivo hippocampal measurement and memory: a comparison of manual tracing and automated segmentation in a large community-based sample.

    PubMed

    Cherbuin, Nicolas; Anstey, Kaarin J; Réglade-Meslin, Chantal; Sachdev, Perminder S

    2009-01-01

    While manual tracing is the method of choice in measuring hippocampal volume, its time intensive nature and proneness to human error make automated methods attractive, especially when applied to large samples. Few studies have systematically compared the performance of the two techniques. In this study, we measured hippocampal volumes in a large (N = 403) population-based sample of individuals aged 44-48 years using manual tracing by a trained researcher and automated procedure using Freesurfer (http://surfer.nmr.mgh.harvard.edu) imaging suite. Results showed that absolute hippocampal volumes assessed with these methods were significantly different, with automated measures using the Freesurfer software suite being significantly larger, by 23% for the left and 29% for the right hippocampus. The correlation between the two methods varied from 0.61 to 0.80, with lower correlations for hippocampi with visible abnormalities. Inspection of 2D and 3D models suggested that this difference was largely due to greater inclusion of boundary voxels by the automated method and variations in subiculum/entorhinal segmentation. The correlation between left and right hippocampal volumes was very similar by the two methods. The relationship of hippocampal volumes to selected sociodemographic and cognitive variables was not affected by the measurement method, with each measure showing an association with memory performance and suggesting that both were equally valid for this purpose. This study supports the use of automated measures, based on Freesurfer in this instance, as being sufficiently reliable and valid particularly in the context of larger sample sizes when the research question does not rely on 'true' hippocampal volumes.

  14. Final ROI Report - Technology Transfer of Waste-Reducing Groundwater Sampling Systems

    SciTech Connect

    Noyes, C; Howard, G; Bishop, D; Tuckfield, C; Hiergesell, R

    2002-09-30

    This report presents the findings of a U.S. DOE Environmental Management technology transfer initiative of waste-reducing ground water sampling systems between Savannah River Site (SRS) and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) which occurred during fiscal years 2001 and 2002. The report describes the collaboration between the two sites, the deployment of the Savannah River Site Purge Water Management System at LLNL, the changes made to that system for use at LLNL, and documents the return-on-investment derived from the system's use at LLNL as well as other benefits generated through this inter-laboratory collaboration. An evaluation of the deployment of the LLNL EasyPump sampling technology at SRS will be covered in a separate report from SRS.

  15. Automated mass spectrometer grows up

    SciTech Connect

    McInteer, B.B.; Montoya, J.G.; Stark, E.E.

    1984-01-01

    In 1980 we reported the development of an automated mass spectrometer for large scale batches of samples enriched in nitrogen-15 as ammonium salts. Since that time significant technical progress has been made in the instrument. Perhaps more significantly, administrative and institutional changes have permitted the entire effort to be transferred to the private sector from its original base at the Los Alamos National Laboratory. This has ensured the continuance of a needed service to the international scientific community as revealed by a development project at a national laboratory, and is an excellent example of beneficial technology transfer to private industry.

  16. Automated sample preparation by pressurized liquid extraction-solid-phase extraction for the liquid chromatographic-mass spectrometric investigation of polyphenols in the brewing process.

    PubMed

    Papagiannopoulos, Menelaos; Mellenthin, Annett

    2002-11-08

    The analysis of polyphenols from solid plant or food samples usually requires laborious sample preparation. The liquid extraction of these compounds from the sample is compromised by apolar matrix interferences, an excess of which has to be eliminated prior to subsequent purification and separation. Applying pressurized liquid extraction to the extraction of polyphenols from hops, the use of different solvents sequentially can partly overcome these problems. Initial extraction with pentane eliminates hydrophobic compounds like hop resins and oils and enables the straightforward automated on-line solid-phase extraction as part of an optimized LC-MS analysis.

  17. Using the ARTMO toolbox for automated retrieval of biophysical parameters through radiative transfer model inversion: Optimizing LUT-based inversion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Verrelst, J.; Rivera, J. P.; Leonenko, G.; Alonso, L.; Moreno, J.

    2012-04-01

    Radiative transfer (RT) modeling plays a key role for earth observation (EO) because it is needed to design EO instruments and to develop and test inversion algorithms. The inversion of a RT model is considered as a successful approach for the retrieval of biophysical parameters because of being physically-based and generally applicable. However, to the broader community this approach is considered as laborious because of its many processing steps and expert knowledge is required to realize precise model parameterization. We have recently developed a radiative transfer toolbox ARTMO (Automated Radiative Transfer Models Operator) with the purpose of providing in a graphical user interface (GUI) essential models and tools required for terrestrial EO applications such as model inversion. In short, the toolbox allows the user: i) to choose between various plant leaf and canopy RT models (e.g. models from the PROSPECT and SAIL family, FLIGHT), ii) to choose between spectral band settings of various air- and space-borne sensors or defining own sensor settings, iii) to simulate a massive amount of spectra based on a look up table (LUT) approach and storing it in a relational database, iv) to plot spectra of multiple models and compare them with measured spectra, and finally, v) to run model inversion against optical imagery given several cost options and accuracy estimates. In this work ARTMO was used to tackle some well-known problems related to model inversion. According to Hadamard conditions, mathematical models of physical phenomena are mathematically invertible if the solution of the inverse problem to be solved exists, is unique and depends continuously on data. This assumption is not always met because of the large number of unknowns and different strategies have been proposed to overcome this problem. Several of these strategies have been implemented in ARTMO and were here analyzed to optimize the inversion performance. Data came from the SPARC-2003 dataset

  18. Linear model correction: A method for transferring a near-infrared multivariate calibration model without standard samples.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yan; Cai, Wensheng; Shao, Xueguang

    2016-12-05

    Calibration transfer is essential for practical applications of near infrared (NIR) spectroscopy because the measurements of the spectra may be performed on different instruments and the difference between the instruments must be corrected. For most of calibration transfer methods, standard samples are necessary to construct the transfer model using the spectra of the samples measured on two instruments, named as master and slave instrument, respectively. In this work, a method named as linear model correction (LMC) is proposed for calibration transfer without standard samples. The method is based on the fact that, for the samples with similar physical and chemical properties, the spectra measured on different instruments are linearly correlated. The fact makes the coefficients of the linear models constructed by the spectra measured on different instruments are similar in profile. Therefore, by using the constrained optimization method, the coefficients of the master model can be transferred into that of the slave model with a few spectra measured on slave instrument. Two NIR datasets of corn and plant leaf samples measured with different instruments are used to test the performance of the method. The results show that, for both the datasets, the spectra can be correctly predicted using the transferred partial least squares (PLS) models. Because standard samples are not necessary in the method, it may be more useful in practical uses.

  19. Linear model correction: A method for transferring a near-infrared multivariate calibration model without standard samples

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Yan; Cai, Wensheng; Shao, Xueguang

    2016-12-01

    Calibration transfer is essential for practical applications of near infrared (NIR) spectroscopy because the measurements of the spectra may be performed on different instruments and the difference between the instruments must be corrected. For most of calibration transfer methods, standard samples are necessary to construct the transfer model using the spectra of the samples measured on two instruments, named as master and slave instrument, respectively. In this work, a method named as linear model correction (LMC) is proposed for calibration transfer without standard samples. The method is based on the fact that, for the samples with similar physical and chemical properties, the spectra measured on different instruments are linearly correlated. The fact makes the coefficients of the linear models constructed by the spectra measured on different instruments are similar in profile. Therefore, by using the constrained optimization method, the coefficients of the master model can be transferred into that of the slave model with a few spectra measured on slave instrument. Two NIR datasets of corn and plant leaf samples measured with different instruments are used to test the performance of the method. The results show that, for both the datasets, the spectra can be correctly predicted using the transferred partial least squares (PLS) models. Because standard samples are not necessary in the method, it may be more useful in practical uses.

  20. Automated Liquid Microjunction Surface Sampling-HPLC-MS/MS Analysis of Drugs and Metabolites in Whole-Body Thin Tissue Sections

    SciTech Connect

    Kertesz, Vilmos; Van Berkel, Gary J

    2013-01-01

    A fully automated liquid extraction-based surface sampling system utilizing a commercially available autosampler coupled to high performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (HPLC-MS/MS) detection is reported. Discrete spots selected for droplet-based sampling and automated sample queue generation for both the autosampler and MS were enabled by using in-house developed software. In addition, co-registration of spatially resolved sampling position and HPLC-MS information to generate heatmaps of compounds monitored for subsequent data analysis was also available in the software. The system was evaluated with whole-body thin tissue sections from propranolol dosed rat. The hands-free operation of the system was demonstrated by creating heatmaps of the parent drug and its hydroxypropranolol glucuronide metabolites with 1 mm resolution in the areas of interest. The sample throughput was approximately 5 min/sample defined by the time needed for chromatographic separation. The spatial distributions of both the drug and its metabolites were consistent with previous studies employing other liquid extraction-based surface sampling methodologies.

  1. Automated dispersive liquid-liquid microextraction coupled to high performance liquid chromatography - cold vapour atomic fluorescence spectroscopy for the determination of mercury species in natural water samples.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yao-Min; Zhang, Feng-Ping; Jiao, Bao-Yu; Rao, Jin-Yu; Leng, Geng

    2017-04-14

    An automated, home-constructed, and low cost dispersive liquid-liquid microextraction (DLLME) device that directly coupled to a high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) - cold vapour atomic fluorescence spectroscopy (CVAFS) system was designed and developed for the determination of trace concentrations of methylmercury (MeHg(+)), ethylmercury (EtHg(+)) and inorganic mercury (Hg(2+)) in natural waters. With a simple, miniaturized and efficient automated DLLME system, nanogram amounts of these mercury species were extracted from natural water samples and injected into a hyphenated HPLC-CVAFS for quantification. The complete analytical procedure, including chelation, extraction, phase separation, collection and injection of the extracts, as well as HPLC-CVAFS quantification, was automated. Key parameters, such as the type and volume of the chelation, extraction and dispersive solvent, aspiration speed, sample pH, salt effect and matrix effect, were thoroughly investigated. Under the optimum conditions, linear range was 10-1200ngL(-1) for EtHg(+) and 5-450ngL(-1) for MeHg(+) and Hg(2+). Limits of detection were 3.0ngL(-1) for EtHg(+) and 1.5ngL(-1) for MeHg(+) and Hg(2+). Reproducibility and recoveries were assessed by spiking three natural water samples with different Hg concentrations, giving recoveries from 88.4-96.1%, and relative standard deviations <5.1%.

  2. Development of a fully automated open-column chemical-separation system—COLUMNSPIDER—and its application to Sr-Nd-Pb isotope analyses of igneous rock samples

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miyazaki, Takashi; Vaglarov, Bogdan Stefanov; Takei, Masakazu; Suzuki, Masahiro; Suzuki, Hiroaki; Ohsawa, Kouzou; Chang, Qing; Takahashi, Toshiro; Hirahara, Yuka; Hanyu, Takeshi; Kimura, Jun-Ichi; Tatsumi, Yoshiyuki

    A fully automated open-column resin-bed chemical-separation system, named COLUMNSPIDER, has been developed. The system consists of a programmable micropipetting robot that dispenses chemical reagents and sample solutions into an open-column resin bed for elemental separation. After the initial set up of resin columns, chemical reagents, and beakers for the separated chemical components, all separation procedures are automated. As many as ten samples can be eluted in parallel in a single automated run. Many separation procedures, such as radiogenic isotope ratio analyses for Sr and Nd, involve the use of multiple column separations with different resin columns, chemical reagents, and beakers of various volumes. COLUMNSPIDER completes these separations using multiple runs. Programmable functions, including the positioning of the micropipetter, reagent volume, and elution time, enable flexible operation. Optimized movements for solution take-up and high-efficiency column flushing allow the system to perform as precisely as when carried out manually by a skilled operator. Procedural blanks, examined for COLUMNSPIDER separations of Sr, Nd, and Pb, are low and negligible. The measured Sr, Nd, and Pb isotope ratios for JB-2 and Nd isotope ratios for JB-3 and BCR-2 rock standards all fall within the ranges reported previously in high-accuracy analyses. COLUMNSPIDER is a versatile tool for the efficient elemental separation of igneous rock samples, a process that is both labor intensive and time consuming.

  3. Automated extraction of DNA from blood and PCR setup using a Tecan Freedom EVO liquid handler for forensic genetic STR typing of reference samples.

    PubMed

    Stangegaard, Michael; Frøslev, Tobias G; Frank-Hansen, Rune; Hansen, Anders J; Morling, Niels

    2011-04-01

    We have implemented and validated automated protocols for DNA extraction and PCR setup using a Tecan Freedom EVO liquid handler mounted with the Te-MagS magnetic separation device (Tecan, Männedorf, Switzerland). The protocols were validated for accredited forensic genetic work according to ISO 17025 using the Qiagen MagAttract DNA Mini M48 kit (Qiagen GmbH, Hilden, Germany) from fresh whole blood and blood from deceased individuals. The workflow was simplified by returning the DNA extracts to the original tubes minimizing the risk of misplacing samples. The tubes that originally contained the samples were washed with MilliQ water before the return of the DNA extracts. The PCR was setup in 96-well microtiter plates. The methods were validated for the kits: AmpFℓSTR Identifiler, SGM Plus and Yfiler (Applied Biosystems, Foster City, CA), GenePrint FFFL and PowerPlex Y (Promega, Madison, WI). The automated protocols allowed for extraction and addition of PCR master mix of 96 samples within 3.5h. In conclusion, we demonstrated that (1) DNA extraction with magnetic beads and (2) PCR setup for accredited, forensic genetic short tandem repeat typing can be implemented on a simple automated liquid handler leading to the reduction of manual work, and increased quality and throughput.

  4. Carotid Catheterization and Automated Blood Sampling Induce Systemic IL-6 Secretion and Local Tissue Damage and Inflammation in the Heart, Kidneys, Liver and Salivary Glands in NMRI Mice

    PubMed Central

    Teilmann, Anne Charlotte; Rozell, Björn; Kalliokoski, Otto; Hau, Jann; Abelson, Klas S. P.

    2016-01-01

    Automated blood sampling through a vascular catheter is a frequently utilized technique in laboratory mice. The potential immunological and physiological implications associated with this technique have, however, not been investigated in detail. The present study compared plasma levels of the cytokines IL-1β, IL-2, IL-6, IL-10, IL-17A, GM-CSF, IFN-γ and TNF-α in male NMRI mice that had been subjected to carotid artery catheterization and subsequent automated blood sampling with age-matched control mice. Body weight and histopathological changes in the surgical area, including the salivary glands, the heart, brain, spleen, liver, kidneys and lungs were compared. Catheterized mice had higher levels of IL-6 than did control mice, but other cytokine levels did not differ between the groups. No significant difference in body weight was found. The histology revealed inflammatory and regenerative (healing) changes at surgical sites of all catheterized mice, with mild inflammatory changes extending into the salivary glands. Several catheterized mice had multifocal degenerative to necrotic changes with inflammation in the heart, kidneys and livers, suggesting that thrombi had detached from the catheter tip and embolized to distant sites. Thus, catheterization and subsequent automated blood sampling may have physiological impact. Possible confounding effects of visceral damage should be assessed and considered, when using catheterized mouse models. PMID:27832170

  5. Automated sample preparation based on the sequential injection principle. Solid-phase extraction on a molecularly imprinted polymer coupled on-line to high-performance liquid chromatography.

    PubMed

    Theodoridis, Georgios; Zacharis, Constantinos K; Tzanavaras, Paraskevas D; Themelis, Demetrius G; Economou, Anastasios

    2004-03-19

    A molecularly imprinted polymer (MIP) prepared using caffeine, as a template, was validated as a selective sorbent for solid-phase extraction (SPE), within an automated on-line sample preparation method. The polymer produced was packed in a polypropylene cartridge, which was incorporated in a flow system prior to the HPLC analytical instrumentation. The principle of sequential injection was utilised for a rapid automated and efficient SPE procedure on the MIP. Samples, buffers, washing and elution solvents were introduced to the extraction cartridge via a peristaltic pump and a multi-position valve, both controlled by appropriate software developed in-house. The method was optimised in terms of flow rates, extraction time and volume. After extraction, the final eluent from the extraction cartridge was directed to the injection loop and was subsequently analysed on HPLC. The overall set-up facilitated unattended operation, operation and improved both mixing fluidics and method development flexibility. This system may be readily built in the laboratory and can be further used as an automated platform for on-line sample preparation.

  6. Water-quality assessment of south-central Texas : comparison of water quality in surface-water samples collected manually and by automated samplers

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ging, Patricia B.

    1999-01-01

    Surface-water sampling protocols of the U.S. Geological Survey National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program specify samples for most properties and constituents to be collected manually in equal-width increments across a stream channel and composited for analysis. Single-point sampling with an automated sampler (autosampler) during storms was proposed in the upper part of the South-Central Texas NAWQA study unit, raising the question of whether property and constituent concentrations from automatically collected samples differ significantly from those in samples collected manually. Statistical (Wilcoxon signed-rank test) analyses of 3 to 16 paired concentrations for each of 26 properties and constituents from water samples collected using both methods at eight sites in the upper part of the study unit indicated that there were no significant differences in concentrations for dissolved constituents, other than calcium and organic carbon.

  7. Method for determining temperatures and heat transfer coefficients with a superconductive sample

    SciTech Connect

    Gentile, D.; Hassenzahl, W.; Polak, M.

    1980-05-01

    The method that is described here uses the current-sharing characteristic of a copper-stabilized, superconductive NbTi wire to determine the temperature. The measurements were made for magnetic fields up to 6 T and the precision actually attained with this method is about 0.1 K. It is an improvement over one that has been used at 4.2 K to measure transient heat transfer in that all the parameters of the sample are well known and the current in the sample is measured directly. The response time of the probe is less than 5 ..mu..s and it has been used to measure temperatures during heat pulses as short as 20 ..mu..s. Temperature measurements between 1.6 and 8.5 K are described. An accurate formula based on the current and electric field along the sample has been developed for temperatures between 2.5 K and the critical temperature of the conductor, which, of course, depends on the applied field. Also described is a graphical method that must be used below 2.5 K, where the critical current is not a linear function of temperature.

  8. AUTOMATED ANALYSIS OF AQUEOUS SAMPLES CONTAINING PESTICIDES, ACIDIC/BASIC/NEUTRAL SEMIVOLATILES AND VOLATILE ORGANIC COMPOUNDS BY SOLID PHASE EXTRACTION COUPLED IN-LINE TO LARGE VOLUME INJECTION GC/MS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Data is presented on the development of a new automated system combining solid phase extraction (SPE) with GC/MS spectrometry for the single-run analysis of water samples containing a broad range of organic compounds. The system uses commercially available automated in-line 10-m...

  9. Automation of flow injection gas diffusion-ion chromatography for the nanomolar determination of methylamines and ammonia in seawater and atmospheric samples

    PubMed Central

    Gibb, Stuart W.; Wood, John W.; Fauzi, R.; Mantoura, C.

    1995-01-01

    The automation and improved design and performance of Flow Injection Gas Diffusion-Ion Chromatography (FIGD-IC), a novel technique for the simultaneous analysis of trace ammonia (NH3) and methylamines (MAs) in aqueous media, is presented. Automated Flow Injection Gas Diffusion (FIGD) promotes the selective transmembrane diffusion of MAs and NH3 from aqueous sample under strongly alkaline (pH > 12, NaOH), chelated (EDTA) conditions into a recycled acidic acceptor stream. The acceptor is then injected onto an ion chromatograph where NH3 and the MAs are fully resolved as their cations and detected conductimetrically. A versatile PC interfaced control unit and data capture unit (DCU) are employed in series to direct the selonoid valve switching sequence, IC operation and collection of data. Automation, together with other modifications improved both linearily (R2 > 0.99 MAs 0-100 nM, NH3 0-1000 nM) and precision (<8%) of FIGD-IC at nanomolar concentrations, compared with the manual procedure. The system was successfully applied to the determination of MAs and NH3 in seawater and in trapped particulate and gaseous atmospheric samples during an oceanographic research cruise. PMID:18925047

  10. Verification of low frequency ac-dc transfer differences of thermal converters using sampling with sine-wave fit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Funck, Torsten; Spiegel, Thomas

    2015-09-01

    Thermal converters show significant ac-dc transfer differences at low frequencies due to nonlinearities of the heat transport mechanism and of the thermal-to-electric conversion. It is assumed that the ac-dc transfer differences at low frequencies are proportional to the input power. We have proved this assumption by an independent method with sampling techniques. A novel approach based on sine-wave fitting is used to calculate the RMS value of the sampled signal from the samples. It makes use of the low noise in a metrological environment. Expanded uncertainties in the order of 1.2 μV/V have been achieved.

  11. Improving the chemiluminescence-based determination of sulphide in complex environmental samples by using a new, automated multi-syringe flow injection analysis system coupled to a gas diffusion unit.

    PubMed

    Maya, Fernando; Estela, José Manuel; Cerdà, Víctor

    2007-10-03

    A new, completely automated multi-syringe flow injection analysis (MSFIA) system coupled to a gas diffusion unit (GDU) was used for the chemiluminescence (CL)-based determination of sulphide ion in various types of environmental matrices with a high sensitivity and selectivity, and the need for no manual sample pretreatment. Sulphide ions are transferred as H(2)S from the donor channel of the GDU to its acceptor channel (AC) through a hydrophobic membrane inserted between the two streams. The solution held in AC replaces the initial sample matrix, which may contain a wide variety of interferents, with one suitable for the CL determination of the analyte. Once sulphide ions have been isolated from the sample matrix, they are determined by their catalytic action on the luminol/H(2)O(2) chemiluminescent reaction system. The influence of various chemical and hydrodynamic variables is discussed and the performance of the proposed system compared with that of existing flow systems for the same purpose. Under the operating conditions used, the proposed method features a linear working range of 0.02-2 mgL(-1), a limit of detection (3 sigma(blank)) of 0.003 mgL(-1), a throughput of 20 samplesh(-1) and a coefficient of variation of 2.4% (n=10) for a 1 mgL(-1) sulphide concentration. The method was used to determine sulphide in leachates and various types of water samples.

  12. Automated determination of the stable carbon isotopic composition (δ13C) of total dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) and total nonpurgeable dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in aqueous samples: RSIL lab codes 1851 and 1852

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Révész, Kinga M.; Doctor, Daniel H.

    2014-01-01

    The purposes of the Reston Stable Isotope Laboratory (RSIL) lab codes 1851 and 1852 are to determine the total carbon mass and the ratio of the stable isotopes of carbon (δ13C) for total dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC, lab code 1851) and total nonpurgeable dissolved organic carbon (DOC, lab code 1852) in aqueous samples. The analysis procedure is automated according to a method that utilizes a total carbon analyzer as a peripheral sample preparation device for analysis of carbon dioxide (CO2) gas by a continuous-flow isotope ratio mass spectrometer (CF-IRMS). The carbon analyzer produces CO2 and determines the carbon mass in parts per million (ppm) of DIC and DOC in each sample separately, and the CF-IRMS determines the carbon isotope ratio of the produced CO2. This configuration provides a fully automated analysis of total carbon mass and δ13C with no operator intervention, additional sample preparation, or other manual analysis. To determine the DIC, the carbon analyzer transfers a specified sample volume to a heated (70 °C) reaction vessel with a preprogrammed volume of 10% phosphoric acid (H3PO4), which allows the carbonate and bicarbonate species in the sample to dissociate to CO2. The CO2 from the reacted sample is subsequently purged with a flow of helium gas that sweeps the CO2 through an infrared CO2 detector and quantifies the CO2. The CO2 is then carried through a high-temperature (650 °C) scrubber reactor, a series of water traps, and ultimately to the inlet of the mass spectrometer. For the analysis of total dissolved organic carbon, the carbon analyzer performs a second step on the sample in the heated reaction vessel during which a preprogrammed volume of sodium persulfate (Na2S2O8) is added, and the hydroxyl radicals oxidize the organics to CO2. Samples containing 2 ppm to 30,000 ppm of carbon are analyzed. The precision of the carbon isotope analysis is within 0.3 per mill for DIC, and within 0.5 per mill for DOC.

  13. Attitudes towards transfers of human tissue samples across borders: An international survey of researchers and policy makers in five countries

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Sharing of tissue samples for research and disease surveillance purposes has become increasingly important. While it is clear that this is an area of intense, international controversy, there is an absence of data about what researchers themselves and those involved in the transfer of samples think about these issues, particularly in developing countries. Methods A survey was carried out in a number of Asian countries and in Egypt to explore what researchers and others involved in research, storage and transfer of human tissue samples thought about some of the issues related to sharing of such samples. Results The results demonstrated broad agreement with the positions taken by developing countries in the current debate, favoring quite severe restrictions on the use of samples by developed countries. Conclusions It is recommended that an international agreement is developed on what conditions should be attached to any sharing of human tissue samples across borders. PMID:20843366

  14. A fully automated system with online sample loading, isotope dimethyl labeling and multidimensional separation for high-throughput quantitative proteome analysis.

    PubMed

    Wang, Fangjun; Chen, Rui; Zhu, Jun; Sun, Deguang; Song, Chunxia; Wu, Yifeng; Ye, Mingliang; Wang, Liming; Zou, Hanfa

    2010-04-01

    Multidimensional separation is often applied for large-scale qualitative and quantitative proteome analysis. A fully automated system with integration of a reversed phase-strong cation exchange (RP-SCX) biphasic trap column into vented sample injection system was developed to realize online sample loading, isotope dimethyl labeling and online multidimensional separation of the proteome samples. Comparing to conventionally manual isotope labeling and off-line fractionation technologies, this system is fully automated and time-saving, which is benefit for improving the quantification reproducibility and accuracy. As phosphate SCX monolith was integrated into the biphasic trap column, high sample injection flow rate and high-resolution stepwise fractionation could be easily achieved. Approximately 1000 proteins could be quantified in approximately 30 h proteome analysis, and the proteome coverage of quantitative analysis can be further greatly improved by prolong the multidimensional separation time. This system was applied to analyze the different protein expression level of HCC and normal human liver tissues. After three times replicated analysis, finally 94 up-regulated and 249 down-regulated (HCC/Normal) proteins were successfully obtained. These significantly regulated proteins are widely validated by both gene and proteins expression studies previously. Such as some enzymes involved in urea cycle, methylation cycle and fatty acids catabolism in liver were all observed down-regulated.

  15. Design and Testing of an Automated System using Thermochromatic Liquid Crystals to Determine Local Heat Transfer Coefficients for an Impinging Jet

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tan, Benjamin

    1995-01-01

    Using thermochromatic liquid crystal to measure surface temperature, an automated transient method with time-varying free-stream temperature is developed to determine local heat transfer coefficients. By allowing the free-stream temperature to vary with time, the need for complicated mechanical components to achieve a step temperature change is eliminated, and by using the thermochromatic liquid crystals as temperature indicators, the labor intensive task of installing many thermocouples is omitted. Bias associated with human perception of the transition of the thermochromatic liquid crystal is eliminated by using a high speed digital camera and a computer. The method is validated by comparisons with results obtained by the steady-state method for a circular Jet impinging on a flat plate. Several factors affecting the accuracy of the method are evaluated.

  16. RESULTS FOR THE MAY 19, 2010 INADVERTENT TRANSFER TO THE SALTSTONE DISPOSAL FACILITY SLURRY: SAMPLE ANALYTICAL RESULTS

    SciTech Connect

    Reigel, M.; Cozzi, A.

    2010-08-17

    This report details the chemical analysis results for the characterization of the May 19, 2010 inadvertent transfer from the Saltstone Production Facility (SPF) to the Saltstone Disposal Facility (SDF). On May 19, 2010, the Saltstone Processing Facility (SPF) inadvertently transferred approximately 1800 gallons of untreated low-level salt solution from the salt feed tank (SFT) to Cell F of Vault 4. The transfer was identified and during safe configuration shutdown, approximately 70 gallons of SFT material was left in the Saltstone hopper. After the shutdown, the material in the hopper was undisturbed, while the SFT has received approximately 1400 gallons of drain water from the Vault 4 bleed system. The drain water path from Vault 4 to the SFT does not include the hopper (Figure 1); therefore it was determined that the material remaining in the hopper was the most representative sample of the salt solution transferred to the vault. To complete item No.5 of Reference 1, Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL) was asked to analyze the liquid sample retrieved from the hopper for pH, and metals identified by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). SRNL prepared a report to complete item No.5 and determine the hazardous nature of the transfer. Waste Solidification Engineering then instructed SRNL to provide a more detailed analysis of the slurried sample to assist in the determination of the portion of Tank 50 waste in the hopper sample.

  17. Effects of sample aging on total cholesterol values determined by the automated ferric chloride-sulfuric acid and Liebermann-Burchard procedures.

    PubMed

    Wood, P D; Bachorik, P S; Albers, J J; Stewart, C C; Winn, C; Lippel, K

    1980-04-01

    To investigate the comparability of three commonly used methods for determination of total cholesterol in plasma in several studies, we used fresh plasma samples as well as plasmas and reference sera that had been stored frozen at -15 degrees C for as long as several years. Duplicate determinations by the manual method of Abell et al. (J. Biol. Chem. 195: 357, 1952) were compared with estimates from one to five continuous-flow analyzers by the ferric chloride-sulfuric acid procedure and also with estimates from five to 13 continuous-flow analyzers by the Liebermann-Burchard procedure with calibrator, as part of the laboratory standardization activities of the Lipid Research Clinics. The agreement among all three procedures was generally within acceptable limits (within 5% of the manual method) when plasmas or sera were fresh or had been frozen for less than one month. Results by the manual method of Abell et al. agreed well with those by the automated Liebermann-Burchard method for samples that had been stored at -15 degrees C for as long as two years. However, the automated ferric chloride-sulfuric acid procedure often showed unacceptably high values (as compared with those from the manual method) for samples that had been stored frozen for a year or more. With the ferric chloride-sulfuric acid method, measured cholesterol concentration increased about 2.5% per year of storage for at least two years. We conclude that reference sera of plasmas that have been kept in long-term frozen storage (-15 degrees C) are not suitable for ongoing standardization of the automated ferric chloride-sulfuric acid assay for cholesterol.

  18. Semi-automated disk-type solid-phase extraction method for polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans in aqueous samples and its application to natural water.

    PubMed

    Choi, J W; Lee, J H; Moon, B S; Baek, K H

    2007-07-20

    A disk-type solid-phase extraction (SPE) method was used for the extraction of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs) in natural water and tap water. Since this SPE system comprised airtight glass covers with a decompression pump, it enabled continuous extraction with semi-automation. The disk-type SPE method was validated by comparing its recovery rates of spiked internal standards with those of the liquid-liquid extraction (LLE). The recovery ranges of both methods were similar in terms of (13)C-labeled internal standards: 64.3-99.2% for the LLE and 52.4-93.6% for the SPE. For the native spike of 1,3,6,8-tetrachlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) and octachlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxin (OCDD), the recoveries in the SPE were in the normal range of 77.9-101.1%. However, in the LLE, the recoveries of 1,3,6,8-TCDD decreased significantly. One of the reasons for the low recovery is that the solubility of this congener is high. The semi-automated SPE method was applied to the analysis of different types of water: river water, snow, sea water, raw water for drinking purposes, and tap water. PCDD/F congeners were found in some sea water and snow samples, while their concentrations in the other samples were below the limits of detection (LODs). This SPE system is appropriate for the routine analysis of water samples below 50L.

  19. Automated analysis of mitomycin C in body fluids by high-performance liquid chromatography with on-line sample pre-treatment.

    PubMed

    Tjaden, U R; de Bruijn, E A; van der Hoeven, R A; Jol, C; van der Greef, J; Lingeman, H

    1987-09-04

    A fully automated liquid chromatographic system for the bioanalysis of mitomycin C has been described. The isolation of the analyte from the biological matrix (plasma, ascites and urine) is performed using a continuous-flow system equipped with a dialysis membrane in order to remove proteins. The samples are concentrated on a reversed-phase pre-column and subsequently introduced on to a reversed-phase analytical column by applying column-switching techniques. The drug is detected by absorbance measurements at 360 nm. Using the described system up to 100 samples a day can be analysed with determination limits of the order of 1 ng/ml, with a linear dynamic range of at least three decades for plasma and urine samples. The procedure was applied to pharmacokinetic studies of ovarian cancer patients treated intraperitoneally with mitomycin C.

  20. Optimization of automated gas sample collection and isotope ratio mass spectrometric analysis of delta(13)C of CO(2) in air.

    PubMed

    Zeeman, Matthias J; Werner, Roland A; Eugster, Werner; Siegwolf, Rolf T W; Wehrle, Günther; Mohn, Joachim; Buchmann, Nina

    2008-12-01

    The application of (13)C/(12)C in ecosystem-scale tracer models for CO(2) in air requires accurate measurements of the mixing ratios and stable isotope ratios of CO(2). To increase measurement reliability and data intercomparability, as well as to shorten analysis times, we have improved an existing field sampling setup with portable air sampling units and developed a laboratory setup for the analysis of the delta(13)C of CO(2) in air by isotope ratio mass spectrometry (IRMS). The changes consist of (a) optimization of sample and standard gas flow paths, (b) additional software configuration, and (c) automation of liquid nitrogen refilling for the cryogenic trap. We achieved a precision better than 0.1 per thousand and an accuracy of 0.11 +/- 0.04 per thousand for the measurement of delta(13)C of CO(2) in air and unattended operation of measurement sequences up to 12 h.

  1. Method and apparatus for automated processing and aliquoting of whole blood samples for analysis in a centrifugal fast analyzer

    DOEpatents

    Burtis, Carl A.; Johnson, Wayne F.; Walker, William A.

    1988-01-01

    A rotor and disc assembly for use in a centrifugal fast analyzer. The assembly is designed to process multiple samples of whole blood followed by aliquoting of the resultant serum into precisely measured samples for subsequent chemical analysis. The assembly requires minimal operator involvement with no mechanical pipetting. The system comprises (1) a whole blood sample disc, (2) a serum sample disc, (3) a sample preparation rotor, and (4) an analytical rotor. The blood sample disc and serum sample disc are designed with a plurality of precision bore capillary tubes arranged in a spoked array. Samples of blood are loaded into the blood sample disc in capillary tubes filled by capillary action and centrifugally discharged into cavities of the sample preparation rotor where separation of serum and solids is accomplished. The serum is loaded into the capillaries of the serum sample disc by capillary action and subsequently centrifugally expelled into cuvettes of the analytical rotor for analysis by conventional methods.

  2. Method and apparatus for automated processing and aliquoting of whole blood samples for analysis in a centrifugal fast analyzer

    DOEpatents

    Burtis, C.A.; Johnson, W.F.; Walker, W.A.

    1985-08-05

    A rotor and disc assembly for use in a centrifugal fast analyzer. The assembly is designed to process multiple samples of whole blood followed by aliquoting of the resultant serum into precisely measured samples for subsequent chemical analysis. The assembly requires minimal operator involvement with no mechanical pipetting. The system comprises: (1) a whole blood sample disc; (2) a serum sample disc; (3) a sample preparation rotor; and (4) an analytical rotor. The blood sample disc and serum sample disc are designed with a plurality of precision bore capillary tubes arranged in a spoked array. Samples of blood are loaded into the blood sample disc by capillary action and centrifugally discharged into cavities of the sample preparation rotor where separation of serum and solids is accomplished. The serum is loaded into the capillaries of the serum sample disc by capillary action and subsequently centrifugally expelled into cuvettes of the analyticaly rotor for conventional methods. 5 figs.

  3. Mathematical modeling of heat transfer processes of coal waste combustion in a chamber of automated energy generating complex

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mochalov, Sergey P.; Kalashnikov, Sergey N.; Mochalov, Pavel S.; Song, Guolin; Tang, Guoyi

    2013-04-01

    The automated energy generating complex allows obtaining heat energy from waste coal-water slurry fuel (WCF) that is a mixture of fine coal particles from coal enrichment wastes with water. The mixture is blown into the swirl chamber under the pressure through the special sprayers. The received heat energy is used in different ways. One of the important issues is to estimate the heat losses through the walls of this chamber. In this paper we solved the boundary problem of mathematical physics to estimate the temperature fields in the walls of the swirl chamber. The obtained solution allows us to estimate the heat losses through the walls of the swirl chamber. The task of the mathematical physics has been solved by a numerical finite-difference method. The method for solving this problem can be used in the calculation of temperature fields and evaluation of heat losses in other thermal power units.

  4. Automated DNA Sequencing System

    SciTech Connect

    Armstrong, G.A.; Ekkebus, C.P.; Hauser, L.J.; Kress, R.L.; Mural, R.J.

    1999-04-25

    Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) is developing a core DNA sequencing facility to support biological research endeavors at ORNL and to conduct basic sequencing automation research. This facility is novel because its development is based on existing standard biology laboratory equipment; thus, the development process is of interest to the many small laboratories trying to use automation to control costs and increase throughput. Before automation, biology Laboratory personnel purified DNA, completed cycle sequencing, and prepared 96-well sample plates with commercially available hardware designed specifically for each step in the process. Following purification and thermal cycling, an automated sequencing machine was used for the sequencing. A technician handled all movement of the 96-well sample plates between machines. To automate the process, ORNL is adding a CRS Robotics A- 465 arm, ABI 377 sequencing machine, automated centrifuge, automated refrigerator, and possibly an automated SpeedVac. The entire system will be integrated with one central controller that will direct each machine and the robot. The goal of this system is to completely automate the sequencing procedure from bacterial cell samples through ready-to-be-sequenced DNA and ultimately to completed sequence. The system will be flexible and will accommodate different chemistries than existing automated sequencing lines. The system will be expanded in the future to include colony picking and/or actual sequencing. This discrete event, DNA sequencing system will demonstrate that smaller sequencing labs can achieve cost-effective the laboratory grow.

  5. Revealed and stated preference valuation and transfer: A within-sample comparison of water quality improvement values

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferrini, Silvia; Schaafsma, Marije; Bateman, Ian

    2014-06-01

    Benefit transfer (BT) methods are becoming increasingly important for environmental policy, but the empirical findings regarding transfer validity are mixed. A novel valuation survey was designed to obtain both stated preference (SP) and revealed preference (RP) data concerning river water quality values from a large sample of households. Both dichotomous choice and payment card contingent valuation (CV) and travel cost (TC) data were collected. Resulting valuations were directly compared and used for BT analyses using both unit value and function transfer approaches. WTP estimates are found to pass the convergence validity test. BT results show that the CV data produce lower transfer errors, below 20% for both unit value and function transfer, than TC data especially when using function transfer. Further, comparison of WTP estimates suggests that in all cases, differences between methods are larger than differences between study areas. Results show that when multiple studies are available, using welfare estimates from the same area but based on a different method consistently results in larger errors than transfers across space keeping the method constant.

  6. 16 CFR Appendix C to Part 436 - Sample Item 20(2) Table-Transfers of Franchised Outlets

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 16 Commercial Practices 1 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Sample Item 20(2) Table-Transfers of Franchised Outlets C Appendix C to Part 436 Commercial Practices FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION TRADE REGULATION RULES DISCLOSURE REQUIREMENTS AND PROHIBITIONS CONCERNING FRANCHISING Pt. 436, App. C Appendix C to...

  7. 16 CFR Appendix C to Part 436 - Sample Item 20(2) Table-Transfers of Franchised Outlets

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 16 Commercial Practices 1 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Sample Item 20(2) Table-Transfers of Franchised Outlets C Appendix C to Part 436 Commercial Practices FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION TRADE REGULATION RULES DISCLOSURE REQUIREMENTS AND PROHIBITIONS CONCERNING FRANCHISING Pt. 436, App. C Appendix C to...

  8. 16 CFR Appendix C to Part 436 - Sample Item 20(2) Table-Transfers of Franchised Outlets

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 16 Commercial Practices 1 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Sample Item 20(2) Table-Transfers of Franchised Outlets C Appendix C to Part 436 Commercial Practices FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION TRADE REGULATION RULES DISCLOSURE REQUIREMENTS AND PROHIBITIONS CONCERNING FRANCHISING Pt. 436, App. C Appendix C to...

  9. A multi-state fragment charge difference approach for diabatic states in electron transfer: Extension and automation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Chou-Hsun; Hsu, Chao-Ping

    2013-10-01

    The electron transfer (ET) rate prediction requires the electronic coupling values. The Generalized Mulliken-Hush (GMH) and Fragment Charge Difference (FCD) schemes have been useful approaches to calculate ET coupling from an excited state calculation. In their typical form, both methods use two eigenstates in forming the target charge-localized diabatic states. For problems involve three or four states, a direct generalization is possible, but it is necessary to pick and assign the locally excited or charge-transfer states involved. In this work, we generalize the 3-state scheme for a multi-state FCD without the need of manual pick or assignment for the states. In this scheme, the diabatic states are obtained separately in the charge-transfer or neutral excited subspaces, defined by their eigenvalues in the fragment charge-difference matrix. In each subspace, the Hamiltonians are diagonalized, and there exist off-diagonal Hamiltonian matrix elements between different subspaces, particularly the charge-transfer and neutral excited diabatic states. The ET coupling values are obtained as the corresponding off-diagonal Hamiltonian matrix elements. A similar multi-state GMH scheme can also be developed. We test the new multi-state schemes for the performance in systems that have been studied using more than two states with FCD or GMH. We found that the multi-state approach yields much better charge-localized states in these systems. We further test for the dependence on the number of state included in the calculation of ET couplings. The final coupling values are converged when the number of state included is increased. In one system where experimental value is available, the multi-state FCD coupling value agrees better with the previous experimental result. We found that the multi-state GMH and FCD are useful when the original two-state approach fails.

  10. A multi-state fragment charge difference approach for diabatic states in electron transfer: extension and automation.

    PubMed

    Yang, Chou-Hsun; Hsu, Chao-Ping

    2013-10-21

    The electron transfer (ET) rate prediction requires the electronic coupling values. The Generalized Mulliken-Hush (GMH) and Fragment Charge Difference (FCD) schemes have been useful approaches to calculate ET coupling from an excited state calculation. In their typical form, both methods use two eigenstates in forming the target charge-localized diabatic states. For problems involve three or four states, a direct generalization is possible, but it is necessary to pick and assign the locally excited or charge-transfer states involved. In this work, we generalize the 3-state scheme for a multi-state FCD without the need of manual pick or assignment for the states. In this scheme, the diabatic states are obtained separately in the charge-transfer or neutral excited subspaces, defined by their eigenvalues in the fragment charge-difference matrix. In each subspace, the Hamiltonians are diagonalized, and there exist off-diagonal Hamiltonian matrix elements between different subspaces, particularly the charge-transfer and neutral excited diabatic states. The ET coupling values are obtained as the corresponding off-diagonal Hamiltonian matrix elements. A similar multi-state GMH scheme can also be developed. We test the new multi-state schemes for the performance in systems that have been studied using more than two states with FCD or GMH. We found that the multi-state approach yields much better charge-localized states in these systems. We further test for the dependence on the number of state included in the calculation of ET couplings. The final coupling values are converged when the number of state included is increased. In one system where experimental value is available, the multi-state FCD coupling value agrees better with the previous experimental result. We found that the multi-state GMH and FCD are useful when the original two-state approach fails.

  11. A timer inventory based upon manual and automated analysis of ERTS-1 and supporting aircraft data using multistage probability sampling. [Plumas National Forest, California

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nichols, J. D.; Gialdini, M.; Jaakkola, S.

    1974-01-01

    A quasi-operational study demonstrating that a timber inventory based on manual and automated analysis of ERTS-1, supporting aircraft data and ground data was made using multistage sampling techniques. The inventory proved to be a timely, cost effective alternative to conventional timber inventory techniques. The timber volume on the Quincy Ranger District of the Plumas National Forest was estimated to be 2.44 billion board feet with a sampling error of 8.2 percent. Costs per acre for the inventory procedure at 1.1 cent/acre compared favorably with the costs of a conventional inventory at 25 cents/acre. A point-by-point comparison of CALSCAN-classified ERTS data with human-interpreted low altitude photo plots indicated no significant differences in the overall classification accuracies.

  12. Fast automated dual-syringe based dispersive liquid-liquid microextraction coupled with gas chromatography-mass spectrometry for the determination of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in environmental water samples.

    PubMed

    Guo, Liang; Tan, Shufang; Li, Xiao; Lee, Hian Kee

    2016-03-18

    An automated procedure, combining low density solvent based solvent demulsification dispersive liquid-liquid microextraction (DLLME) with gas chromatography-mass spectrometry analysis, was developed for the determination of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in environmental water samples. Capitalizing on a two-rail commercial autosampler, fast solvent transfer using a large volume syringe dedicated to the DLLME process, and convenient extract collection using a small volume microsyringe for better GC performance were enabled. Extraction parameters including the type and volume of extraction solvent, the type and volume of dispersive solvent and demulsification solvent, extraction and demulsification time, and the speed of solvent injection were investigated and optimized. Under the optimized conditions, the linearity ranged from 0.1 to 50 μg/L, 0.2 to 50 μg/L, and 0.5 to 50 μg/L, depending on the analytes. Limits of detection were determined to be between 0.023 and 0.058 μg/L. The method was applied to determine PAHs in environmental water samples.

  13. Hydride Transfer in DHFR by Transition Path Sampling, Kinetic Isotope Effects, and Heavy Enzyme Studies

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Zhen; Antoniou, Dimitri; Schwartz, Steven D.; Schramm, Vern L.

    2016-01-01

    Escherichia coli dihydrofolate reductase (ecDHFR) is used to study fundamental principles of enzyme catalysis. It remains controversial whether fast protein motions are coupled to the hydride transfer catalyzed by ecDHFR. Previous studies with heavy ecDHFR proteins labeled with 13C, 15N, and nonexchangeable 2H reported enzyme mass-dependent hydride transfer kinetics for ecDHFR. Here, we report refined experimental and computational studies to establish that hydride transfer is independent of protein mass. Instead, we found the rate constant for substrate dissociation to be faster for heavy DHFR. Previously reported kinetic differences between light and heavy DHFRs likely arise from kinetic steps other than the chemical step. This study confirms that fast (femtosecond to picosecond) protein motions in ecDHFR are not coupled to hydride transfer and provides an integrative computational and experimental approach to resolve fast dynamics coupled to chemical steps in enzyme catalysis. PMID:26652185

  14. High-throughput, automated extraction of DNA and RNA from clinical samples using TruTip technology on common liquid handling robots.

    PubMed

    Holmberg, Rebecca C; Gindlesperger, Alissa; Stokes, Tinsley; Brady, Dane; Thakore, Nitu; Belgrader, Philip; Cooney, Christopher G; Chandler, Darrell P

    2013-06-11

    TruTip is a simple nucleic acid extraction technology whereby a porous, monolithic binding matrix is inserted into a pipette tip. The geometry of the monolith can be adapted for specific pipette tips ranging in volume from 1.0 to 5.0 ml. The large porosity of the monolith enables viscous or complex samples to readily pass through it with minimal fluidic backpressure. Bi-directional flow maximizes residence time between the monolith and sample, and enables large sample volumes to be processed within a single TruTip. The fundamental steps, irrespective of sample volume or TruTip geometry, include cell lysis, nucleic acid binding to the inner pores of the TruTip monolith, washing away unbound sample components and lysis buffers, and eluting purified and concentrated nucleic acids into an appropriate buffer. The attributes and adaptability of TruTip are demonstrated in three automated clinical sample processing protocols using an Eppendorf epMotion 5070, Hamilton STAR and STARplus liquid handling robots, including RNA isolation from nasopharyngeal aspirate, genomic DNA isolation from whole blood, and fetal DNA extraction and enrichment from large volumes of maternal plasma (respectively).

  15. Influence of sample preparation and reliability of automated numerical refocusing in stain-free analysis of dissected tissues with quantitative phase digital holographic microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kemper, Björn; Lenz, Philipp; Bettenworth, Dominik; Krausewitz, Philipp; Domagk, Dirk; Ketelhut, Steffi

    2015-05-01

    Digital holographic microscopy (DHM) has been demonstrated to be a versatile tool for high resolution non-destructive quantitative phase imaging of surfaces and multi-modal minimally-invasive monitoring of living cell cultures in-vitro. DHM provides quantitative monitoring of physiological processes through functional imaging and structural analysis which, for example, gives new insight into signalling of cellular water permeability and cell morphology changes due to toxins and infections. Also the analysis of dissected tissues quantitative DHM phase contrast prospects application fields by stain-free imaging and the quantification of tissue density changes. We show that DHM allows imaging of different tissue layers with high contrast in unstained tissue sections. As the investigation of fixed samples represents a very important application field in pathology, we also analyzed the influence of the sample preparation. The retrieved data demonstrate that the quality of quantitative DHM phase images of dissected tissues depends strongly on the fixing method and common staining agents. As in DHM the reconstruction is performed numerically, multi-focus imaging is achieved from a single digital hologram. Thus, we evaluated the automated refocussing feature of DHM for application on different types of dissected tissues and revealed that on moderately stained samples highly reproducible holographic autofocussing can be achieved. Finally, it is demonstrated that alterations of the spatial refractive index distribution in murine and human tissue samples represent a reliable absolute parameter that is related of different degrees of inflammation in experimental colitis and Crohn's disease. This paves the way towards the usage of DHM in digital pathology for automated histological examinations and further studies to elucidate the translational potential of quantitative phase microscopy for the clinical management of patients, e.g., with inflammatory bowel disease.

  16. Energy transfer mechanism and Auger effect in Er{sup 3+} coupled silicon nanoparticle samples

    SciTech Connect

    Pitanti, A.; Navarro-Urrios, D.; Garrido, B.; Prtljaga, N.; Daldosso, N.; Pavesi, L.; Gourbilleau, F.; Rizk, R.

    2010-09-15

    We report a spectroscopic study about the energy transfer mechanism among silicon nanoparticles (Si-np), both amorphous and crystalline, and Er ions in a silicon dioxide matrix. From infrared spectroscopic analysis, we have determined that the physics of the transfer mechanism does not depend on the Si-np nature, finding a fast (<200 ns) energy transfer in both cases, while the amorphous nanoclusters reveal a larger transfer efficiency than the nanocrystals. Moreover, the detailed spectroscopic results in the visible range here reported are essential to understand the physics behind the sensitization effect, whose knowledge assumes a crucial role to enhance the transfer rate and possibly employing the material in optical amplifier devices. Joining the experimental data, performed with pulsed and continuous-wave excitation, we develop a model in which the internal intraband recombination within Si-np is competitive with the transfer process via an Auger electron-''recycling'' effect. Posing a different light on some detrimental mechanism such as Auger processes, our findings clearly recast the role of Si-np in the sensitization scheme, where they are able to excite very efficiently ions in close proximity to their surface.

  17. A New Capability for Automated Target Selection and Sampling for use with Remote Sensing Instruments on the MER Rovers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Castano, R.; Estlin, T.; Anderson, R. C.; Gaines, D.; Bornstein, B.; de Granville, C.; Tang, B.; Thompson, D.; Judd, M.

    2008-12-01

    The Onboard Autonomous Science Investigation System (OASIS) evaluates geologic data gathered by a planetary rover. The system is designed to operate onboard a rover identifying and reacting to serendipitous science opportunities, such as rocks with novel properties. OASIS operates by analyzing data the rover gathers, and then using machine learning techniques, prioritizing the data based on criteria set by the science team. This prioritization can be used to organize data for transmission back to Earth and it can be used to search for specific targets it has been told to find by the science team. If one of these targets is found, it is identified as a new science opportunity and a "science alert" is sent to a planning and scheduling system. After reviewing the rover's current operational status to ensure that it has enough resources to complete its traverse and act on the new science opportunity, OASIS can change the command sequence of the rover in order to obtain additional science measurements. Currently, OASIS is being applied on a new front. OASIS is providing a new rover mission technology that enables targeted remote-sensing science in an automated fashion during or after rover traverses. Currently, targets for remote sensing instruments, especially narrow field-of-view instruments (such as the MER Mini- TES spectrometer or the 2009 MSL ChemCam spectrometer) must be selected manually based on imagery already on the ground with the operations team. OASIS will enable the rover flight software to analyze imagery onboard in order to autonomously select and sequence targeted remote-sensing observations in an opportunistic fashion. We are in the process of scheduling an onboard MER experiment to demonstrate the OASIS capability in early 2009.

  18. Transferable Skills Representations in a Portuguese College Sample: Gender, Age, Adaptability and Vocational Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rocha, Magda

    2012-01-01

    The departing point of this study is the theoretical framework of "Making the Match project" (Evers and Rush in Management Learning 27:275-299, 1996) about how to develop a common language among stakeholders regarding transferable skills. Thus, the paper examines the impact of demographic variables (age and gender) and developmental…

  19. Determination of selenium in marine biological tissues by transverse heated electrothermal atomic absorption spectrometry with longitudinal Zeeman background correction and automated ultrasonic slurry sampling.

    PubMed

    Méndez, H; Alava, F; Lavilla, I; Bendicho, C

    2001-01-01

    A fast, sensitive, and reliable method for determination of selenium in marine biological tissues by electrothermal atomic absorption spectrometry with slurry sampling was developed. Slurries were prepared from fresh and frozen seafood samples that were previously homogenized, dried, and ground; particle sizes <100 microm were taken for analysis. A 3% (v/v) HNO3 solution containing 0.01% (v/v) Triton X-100 was used as slurry diluent. Slurries were mixed on an automated ultrasonic slurry sampler at 20% amplitude for 30 s just before an aliquot was injected into the furnace. The method was successfully validated against the following certified reference materials: NRCC CRM DORM-2 (Dogfish muscle); NRCC CRM TORT-2 (Lobster hepatopancreas); NRCC CRM DOLT-2 (Dogfish liver); and BCR CRM 278 (Mussel tissue), and was subsequently applied to determination of Se in 10 marine biological samples. The influences of the drying procedure (oven-, microwave-, and freeze-drying), matrix modifier amount, mass of solid material in cup, and pipetting sequence are discussed. The limit of determination of Se was 0.16 microg/g and the repeatability, estimated as between-batch precision, was in the range of 4-8%. Se contents in the samples ranged from 0.6 to 2.8 microg/g. The proposed method should be useful for fast assessment of the daily dietary intake of Se.

  20. Evaluation of automated direct sample introduction with comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography/time-of-flight mass spectrometry for the screening analysis of dioxins in fish oil.

    PubMed

    Hoh, Eunha; Lehotay, Steven J; Mastovska, Katerina; Huwe, Janice K

    2008-08-01

    An automated direct sample introduction technique coupled to comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography-time of flight mass spectrometry (DSI-GC x GC/TOF-MS) was applied for the development of a relatively fast and easy analytical screening method for 17 polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins/dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs) and 4 non-ortho polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in fish oil. Comparison of instrumental performance between DSI-GC x GC/TOF-MS and the traditional gas chromatographic high resolution mass spectrometric (GC-HRMS) method showed good agreement of results for standard solutions analyzed in blind fashion. Relatively high tolerance of the DSI technique for lipids in the final extracts enabled a streamlined sample preparation procedure that only required gel permeation chromatography (GPC) and solid-phase extraction (SPE) cleanup with graphitized carbon black. The sample size for the method was 2g of cod liver oil, which achieved limits of quantitation (LOQs) of 0.019-7.8 pg/g toxic equivalent quotients for the individual PCDD/Fs. Lower detection limits can be achieved by using larger sample size and scaling up the sample preparation procedure, but this adds to the labor, time, solvent consumption, and expense of the approach. However, the streamlined method yielded 0.94 pg/g and 2.3 pg/g LOQs for 2,3,7,8-tetrachloro dibenzofuran (TCDF) and 3,3',4,4',5-pentachloro biphenyl (CB126), which were sufficiently low for regulatory monitoring of 2g samples. Therefore, instead of congener specific analysis, this streamlined analytical screening method for TCDF and CB126 has the potential to monitor fish oil contaminated with dioxin and dioxin-like PCBs at or above current food safety limits. Acceptable recoveries for nearly all analytes at three different spiking levels in fish oil samples were achieved with good repeatability.

  1. SU-E-T-138: Automated Chart Review Module Including Cross-Vendor Data Transfer Verification Developed for IHE-RO Initiative

    SciTech Connect

    Brewer, M; Gordon, C; Tien, C

    2015-06-15

    Purpose: To follow the Integrating Healthcare Enterprise - Radiation Oncology (IHE-RO) initiative of proper cross-vendor technology integration, an automated chart checker (ACC) was developed. ACC compares extracted data from an approved patient plan in the Eclipse treatment planning system (TPS) against data existing in the Mosaiq treatment management system (TMS). ACC automatically analyzes these parameters using built-in quality checklists to provide further aid in chart review. Methods: Eclipse TPS data are obtained using Eclipse scripting API (ESAPI) while Mosaiq TMS data are obtained from a radiotherapy-treatment-planning (RTP) file. Using this information, ACC identifies TPS-TMS discrepancies in 18 primary beam parameters including MU, energy, jaw positions, gantry angle, table angle, accessories, and bolus for up to 31 beams. Next, approximately 40 items from traditional quality checklists are evaluated such as prescription consistency, DRR graticule placement, plan approval status, global max dose, and dose tracking coefficients. Parameters were artificially modified to determine if ACC would detect an error in data transfer and to test each component of quality checklists. Results: Using ESAPI scripting and RTP file-processing, ACC was able to properly aggregate data from TPS and TMS for up to 31 beams. Errors were artificially introduced into each plan parameter, and ACC was able to successfully detect all of them within seconds. Next, ACC was able to successfully detect mistakes in the chart by identifying deviations with its quality checklists, within seconds. Conclusion: ACC effectively addresses the potential issue of faulty cross-vendor data transfer, as described by IHE-RO. In addition, ACC was also able to detect deviations from its built-in quality checklists. ACC is already an invaluable tool for efficient and standardized chart review and will continue to improve as its incorporated checklists become more comprehensive.

  2. Simultaneous analysis of organochlorinated pesticides (OCPs) and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) from marine samples using automated pressurized liquid extraction (PLE) and Power Prep™ clean-up.

    PubMed

    Helaleh, Murad I H; Al-Rashdan, Amal; Ibtisam, A

    2012-05-30

    An automated pressurized liquid extraction (PLE) method followed by Power Prep™ clean-up was developed for organochlorinated pesticide (OCP) and polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) analysis in environmental marine samples of fish, squid, bivalves, shells, octopus and shrimp. OCPs and PCBs were simultaneously determined in a single chromatographic run using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry-negative chemical ionization (GC-MS-NCI). About 5 g of each biological marine sample was mixed with anhydrous sodium sulphate and placed in the extraction cell of the PLE system. PLE is controlled by means of a PC using DMS 6000 software. Purification of the extract was accomplished using automated Power Prep™ clean-up with a pre-packed disposable silica column (6 g) supplied by Fluid Management Systems (FMS). All OCPs and PCBs were eluted from the silica column using two types of solvent: 80 mL of hexane and a 50 mL mixture of hexane and dichloromethane (1:1). A wide variety of fish and shellfish were collected from the fish market and analyzed using this method. The total PCB concentrations were 2.53, 0.25, 0.24, 0.24, 0.17 and 1.38 ng g(-1) (w/w) for fish, squid, bivalves, shells, octopus and shrimp, respectively, and the corresponding total OCP concentrations were 30.47, 2.86, 0.92, 10.72, 5.13 and 18.39 ng g(-1) (w/w). Lipids were removed using an SX-3 Bio-Beads gel permeation chromatography (GPC) column. Analytical criteria such as recovery, reproducibility and repeatability were evaluated through a range of biological matrices.

  3. Fully automated sample preparation microsystem for genetic testing of hereditary hearing loss using two-color multiplex allele-specific PCR.

    PubMed

    Zhuang, Bin; Gan, Wupeng; Wang, Shuaiqin; Han, Junping; Xiang, Guangxin; Li, Cai-Xia; Sun, Jing; Liu, Peng

    2015-01-20

    A fully automated microsystem consisting of a disposable DNA extraction and PCR microchip, as well as a compact control instrument, has been successfully developed for genetic testing of hereditary hearing loss from human whole blood. DNA extraction and PCR were integrated into a single 15-μL reaction chamber, where a piece of filter paper was embedded for capturing genomic DNA, followed by in-situ PCR amplification without elution. Diaphragm microvalves actuated by external solenoids together with a "one-way" fluidic control strategy operated by a modular valve positioner and a syringe pump were employed to control the fluids and to seal the chamber during thermal cycling. Fully automated DNA extractions from as low as 0.3-μL human whole blood followed by amplifications of 59-bp β-actin fragments can be completed on the microsystem in about 100 min. Negative control tests that were performed between blood sample analyses proved the successful elimination of any contamination or carryover in the system. To more critically test the microsystem, a two-color multiplex allele-specific PCR (ASPCR) assay for detecting c.176_191del16, c.235delC, and c.299_300delAT mutations in GJB2 gene that accounts for hereditary hearing loss was constructed. Two allele-specific primers, one labeled with TAMRA for wild type and the other with FAM for mutation, were designed for each locus. DNA extraction from blood and ASPCR were performed on the microsystem, followed by an electrophoretic analysis on a portable microchip capillary electrophoresis system. Blood samples from a healthy donor and five persons with genetic mutations were all accurately analyzed with only two steps in less than 2 h.

  4. Automated Sample Preparation (ASP): Development of a Rapid Method to Sequentially Isolate Nucleic Acids and Protein from Any Sample Type by a Cartridge-Based System

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-11-27

    goals. Specifically, CUBRC will design and manufacture a prototype cartridge(s) and test the prototype cartridge for its ability to isolate each...analyte individually and in succession. Testing will be performed on both laboratory derived samples 1. REPORT DATE (DD-MM-YYYY) 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE...CUBRC will design and manufacture a prototype cartridge(s) and test the prototype cartridge for its ability to isolate each analyte individually and in

  5. A filter paper-based microdevice for low-cost, rapid, and automated DNA extraction and amplification from diverse sample types.

    PubMed

    Gan, Wupeng; Zhuang, Bin; Zhang, Pengfei; Han, Junping; Li, Cai-Xia; Liu, Peng

    2014-10-07

    A plastic microfluidic device that integrates a filter disc as a DNA capture phase was successfully developed for low-cost, rapid and automated DNA extraction and PCR amplification from various raw samples. The microdevice was constructed by sandwiching a piece of Fusion 5 filter, as well as a PDMS (polydimethylsiloxane) membrane, between two PMMA (poly(methyl methacrylate)) layers. An automated DNA extraction from 1 μL of human whole blood can be finished on the chip in 7 minutes by sequentially aspirating NaOH, HCl, and water through the filter. The filter disc containing extracted DNA was then taken out directly for PCR. On-chip DNA purification from 0.25-1 μL of human whole blood yielded 8.1-21.8 ng of DNA, higher than those obtained using QIAamp® DNA Micro kits. To realize DNA extraction from raw samples, an additional sample loading chamber containing a filter net with an 80 μm mesh size was designed in front of the extraction chamber to accommodate sample materials. Real-world samples, including whole blood, dried blood stains on Whatman® 903 paper, dried blood stains on FTA™ cards, buccal swabs, saliva, and cigarette butts, can all be processed in the system in 8 minutes. In addition, multiplex amplification of 15 STR (short tandem repeat) loci and Sanger-based DNA sequencing of the 520 bp GJB2 gene were accomplished from the filters that contained extracted DNA from blood. To further prove the feasibility of integrating this extraction method with downstream analyses, "in situ" PCR amplifications were successfully performed in the DNA extraction chamber following DNA purification from blood and blood stains without DNA elution. Using a modified protocol to bond the PDMS and PMMA, our plastic PDMS devices withstood the PCR process without any leakage. This study represents a significant step towards the practical application of on-chip DNA extraction methods, as well as the development of fully integrated genetic analytical systems.

  6. System and method for liquid extraction electrospray-assisted sample transfer to solution for chemical analysis

    DOEpatents

    Kertesz, Vilmos; Van Berkel, Gary J.

    2016-07-12

    A system for sampling a surface includes a surface sampling probe comprising a solvent liquid supply conduit and a distal end, and a sample collector for suspending a sample collection liquid adjacent to the distal end of the probe. A first electrode provides a first voltage to solvent liquid at the distal end of the probe. The first voltage produces a field sufficient to generate electrospray plume at the distal end of the probe. A second electrode provides a second voltage and is positioned to produce a plume-directing field sufficient to direct the electrospray droplets and ions to the suspended sample collection liquid. The second voltage is less than the first voltage in absolute value. A voltage supply system supplies the voltages to the first electrode and the second electrode. The first electrode can apply the first voltage directly to the solvent liquid. A method for sampling for a surface is also disclosed.

  7. Systems and methods for laser assisted sample transfer to solution for chemical analysis

    DOEpatents

    Van Berkel, Gary J.; Kertesz, Vilmos; Ovchinnikova, Olga S.

    2014-06-03

    Systems and methods are described for laser ablation of an analyte from a specimen and capturing of the analyte in a dispensed solvent to form a testing solution. A solvent dispensing and extraction system can form a liquid microjunction with the specimen. The solvent dispensing and extraction system can include a surface sampling probe. The laser beam can be directed through the surface sampling probe. The surface sampling probe can also serve as an atomic force microscopy probe. The surface sampling probe can form a seal with the specimen. The testing solution including the analyte can then be analyzed using an analytical instrument or undergo further processing.

  8. Systems and methods for laser assisted sample transfer to solution for chemical analysis

    DOEpatents

    Van Berkel, Gary J; Kertesz, Vilmos; Ovchinnikova, Olga S

    2013-08-27

    Systems and methods are described for laser ablation of an analyte from a specimen and capturing of the analyte in a dispensed solvent to form a testing solution. A solvent dispensing and extraction system can form a liquid microjunction with the specimen. The solvent dispensing and extraction system can include a surface sampling probe. The laser beam can be directed through the surface sampling probe. The surface sampling probe can also serve as an atomic force microscopy probe. The surface sampling probe can form a seal with the specimen. The testing solution including the analyte can then be analyzed using an analytical instrument or undergo further processing.

  9. Systems and methods for laser assisted sample transfer to solution for chemical analysis

    DOEpatents

    Van Berkel, Gary J.; Kertesz, Vilmos; Ovchinnikova, Olga S.

    2015-09-29

    Systems and methods are described for laser ablation of an analyte from a specimen and capturing of the analyte in a dispensed solvent to form a testing solution. A solvent dispensing and extraction system can form a liquid microjunction with the specimen. The solvent dispensing and extraction system can include a surface sampling probe. The laser beam can be directed through the surface sampling probe. The surface sampling probe can also serve as an atomic force microscopy probe. The surface sampling probe can form a seal with the specimen. The testing solution including the analyte can then be analyzed using an analytical instrument or undergo further processing.

  10. Automated determination of nitrate plus nitrite in aqueous samples with flow injection analysis using vanadium (III) chloride as reductant.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shu; Lin, Kunning; Chen, Nengwang; Yuan, Dongxing; Ma, Jian

    2016-01-01

    Determination of nitrate in aqueous samples is an important analytical objective for environmental monitoring and assessment. Here we report the first automatic flow injection analysis (FIA) of nitrate (plus nitrite) using VCl3 as reductant instead of the well-known but toxic cadmium column for reducing nitrate to nitrite. The reduced nitrate plus the nitrite originally present in the sample react with the Griess reagent (sulfanilamide and N-1-naphthylethylenediamine dihydrochloride) under acidic condition. The resulting pink azo dye can be detected at 540 nm. The Griess reagent and VCl3 are used as a single mixed reagent solution to simplify the system. The various parameters of the FIA procedure including reagent composition, temperature, volume of the injection loop, and flow rate were carefully investigated and optimized via univariate experimental design. Under the optimized conditions, the linear range and detection limit of this method are 0-100 µM (R(2)=0.9995) and 0.1 µM, respectively. The targeted analytical range can be easily extended to higher concentrations by selecting alternative detection wavelengths or increasing flow rate. The FIA system provides a sample throughput of 20 h(-1), which is much higher than that of previously reported manual methods based on the same chemistry. National reference solutions and different kinds of aqueous samples were analyzed with our method as well as the cadmium column reduction method. The results from our method agree well with both the certified value and the results from the cadmium column reduction method (no significant difference with P=0.95). The spiked recovery varies from 89% to 108% for samples with different matrices, showing insignificant matrix interference in this method.

  11. Black tea volatiles fingerprinting by comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography - Mass spectrometry combined with high concentration capacity sample preparation techniques: Toward a fully automated sensomic assessment.

    PubMed

    Magagna, Federico; Cordero, Chiara; Cagliero, Cecilia; Liberto, Erica; Rubiolo, Patrizia; Sgorbini, Barbara; Bicchi, Carlo

    2017-06-15

    Tea prepared by infusion of dried leaves of Camellia sinensis (L.) Kuntze, is the second world's most popular beverage, after water. Its consumption is associated with its chemical composition: it influences its sensory and nutritional quality addressing consumer preferences, and potential health benefits. This study aims to obtain an informative chemical signature of the volatile fraction of black tea samples from Ceylon by applying the principles of sensomics. In particular, several high concentration capacity (HCC) sample preparation techniques were tested in combination with GC×GC-MS to investigate chemical signatures of black tea volatiles. This platform, using headspace solid phase microextraction (HS-SPME) with multicomponent fiber as sampling technique, recovers 95% of the key-odorants in a fully automated work-flow. A group 123 components, including key-odorants, technological and botanical tracers, were mapped. The resulting 2D fingerprints were interpreted by pattern recognition tools (i.e. template matching fingerprinting and scripting) providing highly informative chemical signatures for quality assessment.

  12. A fully automated effervescence assisted dispersive liquid-liquid microextraction based on a stepwise injection system. Determination of antipyrine in saliva samples.

    PubMed

    Medinskaia, Kseniia; Vakh, Christina; Aseeva, Darina; Andruch, Vasil; Moskvin, Leonid; Bulatov, Andrey

    2016-01-01

    A first attempt to automate the effervescence assisted dispersive liquid-liquid microextraction (EA-DLLME) has been reported. The method is based on the aspiration of a sample and all required aqueous reagents into the stepwise injection analysis (SWIA) manifold, followed by simultaneous counterflow injection of the extraction solvent (dichloromethane), the mixture of the effervescence agent (0.5 mol L(-1) Na2CO3) and the proton donor solution (1 mol L(-1) CH3COOH). Formation of carbon dioxide microbubbles generated in situ leads to the dispersion of the extraction solvent in the whole aqueous sample and extraction of the analyte into organic phase. Unlike the conventional DLLME, in the case of EA-DLLME, the addition of dispersive solvent, as well as, time consuming centrifugation step for disruption of the cloudy state is avoided. The phase separation was achieved by gentle bubbling of nitrogen stream (2 mL min(-1) during 2 min). The performance of the suggested approach is demonstrated by determination of antipyrine in saliva samples. The procedure is based on the derivatization of antipyrine by nitrite-ion followed by EA-DLLME of 4-nitrosoantipyrine and subsequent UV-Vis detection using SWIA manifold. The absorbance of the yellow-colored extract at the wavelength of 345 nm obeys Beer's law in the range of 1.5-100 µmol L(-1) of antipyrine in saliva. The LOD, calculated from a blank test based on 3σ, was 0.5 µmol L(-1).

  13. A Large-Sample Test of a Semi-Automated Clavicle Search Engine to Assist Skeletal Identification by Radiograph Comparison.

    PubMed

    D'Alonzo, Susan S; Guyomarc'h, Pierre; Byrd, John E; Stephan, Carl N

    2017-01-01

    In 2014, a morphometric capability to search chest radiograph databases by quantified clavicle shape was published to assist skeletal identification. Here, we extend the validation tests conducted by increasing the search universe 18-fold, from 409 to 7361 individuals to determine whether there is any associated decrease in performance under these more challenging circumstances. The number of trials and analysts were also increased, respectively, from 17 to 30 skeletons, and two to four examiners. Elliptical Fourier analysis was conducted on clavicles from each skeleton by each analyst (shadowgrams trimmed from scratch in every instance) and compared to the search universe. Correctly matching individuals were found in shortlists of 10% of the sample 70% of the time. This rate is similar to, although slightly lower than, rates previously found for much smaller samples (80%). Accuracy and reliability are thereby maintained, even when the comparison system is challenged by much larger search universes.

  14. Versatile sample environments and automation for biological solution X-ray scattering experiments at the P12 beamline (PETRA III, DESY)

    PubMed Central

    Blanchet, Clement E.; Spilotros, Alessandro; Schwemmer, Frank; Graewert, Melissa A.; Kikhney, Alexey; Jeffries, Cy M.; Franke, Daniel; Mark, Daniel; Zengerle, Roland; Cipriani, Florent; Fiedler, Stefan; Roessle, Manfred; Svergun, Dmitri I.

    2015-01-01

    A high-brilliance synchrotron P12 beamline of the EMBL located at the PETRA III storage ring (DESY, Hamburg) is dedicated to biological small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) and has been designed and optimized for scattering experiments on macromolecular solutions. Scatterless slits reduce the parasitic scattering, a custom-designed miniature active beamstop ensures accurate data normalization and the photon-counting PILATUS 2M detector enables the background-free detection of weak scattering signals. The high flux and small beam size allow for rapid experiments with exposure time down to 30–50 ms covering the resolution range from about 300 to 0.5 nm. P12 possesses a versatile and flexible sample environment system that caters for the diverse experimental needs required to study macromolecular solutions. These include an in-vacuum capillary mode for standard batch sample analyses with robotic sample delivery and for continuous-flow in-line sample purification and characterization, as well as an in-air capillary time-resolved stopped-flow setup. A novel microfluidic centrifugal mixing device (SAXS disc) is developed for a high-throughput screening mode using sub-microlitre sample volumes. Automation is a key feature of P12; it is controlled by a beamline meta server, which coordinates and schedules experiments from either standard or nonstandard operational setups. The integrated SASFLOW pipeline automatically checks for consistency, and processes and analyses the data, providing near real-time assessments of overall parameters and the generation of low-resolution models within minutes of data collection. These advances, combined with a remote access option, allow for rapid high-throughput analysis, as well as time-resolved and screening experiments for novice and expert biological SAXS users. PMID:25844078

  15. Radiative transfer and spectroscopic databases: A line-sampling Monte Carlo approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galtier, Mathieu; Blanco, Stéphane; Dauchet, Jérémi; El Hafi, Mouna; Eymet, Vincent; Fournier, Richard; Roger, Maxime; Spiesser, Christophe; Terrée, Guillaume

    2016-03-01

    Dealing with molecular-state transitions for radiative transfer purposes involves two successive steps that both reach the complexity level at which physicists start thinking about statistical approaches: (1) constructing line-shaped absorption spectra as the result of very numerous state-transitions, (2) integrating over optical-path domains. For the first time, we show here how these steps can be addressed simultaneously using the null-collision concept. This opens the door to the design of Monte Carlo codes directly estimating radiative transfer observables from spectroscopic databases. The intermediate step of producing accurate high-resolution absorption spectra is no longer required. A Monte Carlo algorithm is proposed and applied to six one-dimensional test cases. It allows the computation of spectrally integrated intensities (over 25 cm-1 bands or the full IR range) in a few seconds, regardless of the retained database and line model. But free parameters need to be selected and they impact the convergence. A first possible selection is provided in full detail. We observe that this selection is highly satisfactory for quite distinct atmospheric and combustion configurations, but a more systematic exploration is still in progress.

  16. Negative symptoms in schizophrenia: a study in a large clinical sample of patients using a novel automated method

    PubMed Central

    Patel, Rashmi; Jayatilleke, Nishamali; Broadbent, Matthew; Chang, Chin-Kuo; Foskett, Nadia; Gorrell, Genevieve; Hayes, Richard D; Jackson, Richard; Johnston, Caroline; Shetty, Hitesh; Roberts, Angus; McGuire, Philip; Stewart, Robert

    2015-01-01

    Objectives To identify negative symptoms in the clinical records of a large sample of patients with schizophrenia using natural language processing and assess their relationship with clinical outcomes. Design Observational study using an anonymised electronic health record case register. Setting South London and Maudsley NHS Trust (SLaM), a large provider of inpatient and community mental healthcare in the UK. Participants 7678 patients with schizophrenia receiving care during 2011. Main outcome measures Hospital admission, readmission and duration of admission. Results 10 different negative symptoms were ascertained with precision statistics above 0.80. 41% of patients had 2 or more negative symptoms. Negative symptoms were associated with younger age, male gender and single marital status, and with increased likelihood of hospital admission (OR 1.24, 95% CI 1.10 to 1.39), longer duration of admission (β-coefficient 20.5 days, 7.6–33.5), and increased likelihood of readmission following discharge (OR 1.58, 1.28 to 1.95). Conclusions Negative symptoms were common and associated with adverse clinical outcomes, consistent with evidence that these symptoms account for much of the disability associated with schizophrenia. Natural language processing provides a means of conducting research in large representative samples of patients, using data recorded during routine clinical practice. PMID:26346872

  17. Direct Sampling and Analysis from Solid Phase Extraction Cards using an Automated Liquid Extraction Surface Analysis Nanoelectrospray Mass Spectrometry System

    SciTech Connect

    Walworth, Matthew J; ElNaggar, Mariam S; Stankovich, Joseph J; WitkowskiII, Charles E.; Norris, Jeremy L; Van Berkel, Gary J

    2011-01-01

    Direct liquid extraction based surface sampling, a technique previously demonstrated with continuous flow and autonomous pipette liquid microjunction surface sampling probes, has recently been implemented as the Liquid Extraction Surface Analysis (LESA) mode on the commercially available Advion NanoMate chip-based infusion nanoelectrospray ionization system. In the present paper, the LESA mode was applied to the analysis of 96-well format custom solid phase extraction (SPE) cards, with each well consisting of either a 1 or 2 mm diameter monolithic hydrophobic stationary phase. These substrate wells were conditioned, loaded with either single or multi-component aqueous mixtures, and read out using the LESA mode of a TriVersa NanoMate or a Nanomate 100 coupled to an ABI/Sciex 4000QTRAPTM hybrid triple quadrupole/linear ion trap mass spectrometer and a Thermo LTQ XL linear ion trap mass spectrometer. Extraction conditions, including extraction/nanoESI solvent composition, volume, and dwell times, were optimized in the analysis of targeted compounds. Limit of detection and quantitation as well as analysis reproducibility figures of merit were measured. Calibration data was obtained for propranolol using a deuterated internal standard which demonstrated linearity and reproducibility. A 10x increase in signal and cleanup of micromolar Angiotensin II from a concentrated salt solution was demonstrated. Additionally, a multicomponent herbicide mixture at ppb concentration levels was analyzed using MS3 spectra for compound identification in the presence of isobaric interferences.

  18. Comparison of an automated ELFA and two different real-time PCR techniques for Salmonella detection in poultry samples.

    PubMed

    Rohonczy, Kata; Zoller, Linda; Hermann, Zsolt; Fodor, Andrea; Mráz, Balázs; Tabajdi-Pintér, Veronika

    2014-09-01

    The aim of this study was to compare an enzyme-linked fluorescent assay (ELFA)-based and two real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) methods with the results of the standard culture-based method EN ISO 6579:2002 (bacteriological standard method used in the European Union) for the detection of Salmonella spp. in raw chicken meat. Our investigations were performed on 141 poultry samples sorted from supermarkets. Relative accuracy, relative specificity and relative sensitivity were determined. According to the ISO 16140:2003 criteria for validation of alternative microbiological methods, the ELFA-based method (VIDAS ICS2 + SLM), and real-time PCR methods (TaqMan, Bax) were comparable to the reference standard method for the detection of Salmonella spp. in chicken meat. The use of these methods provide results within 48 hours with high sensitivity (100%). The TaqMan real-time PCR showed a relative specificity of 98% and both of the real-time PCR methods presented 100%.The VIDAS ICS2 + SLM and the Bax real-time PCR methods showed the highest relative accuracy (100%) and 99% in case of the TaqMan method. In conclusion, both the real-time PCR and the ELFA-based assay can be used as a rapid and user-friendly diagnostic method for detection of Salmonella spp. in chicken meat samples.

  19. Partition coefficients for the SAMPL5 challenge using transfer free energies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, Michael R.; Brooks, Bernard R.; Wilson, Angela K.

    2016-11-01

    SAMPL challenges (Mobley et al. in J Comput Aided Mol Des 28:135-150, 2014; Skillman in J Comput Aided Mol Des 26:473-474, 2012; Geballe in J Comput Aided Mol Des 24:259-279, 2010; Guthrie in J Phys Chem B 113:4501-4507, 2009) provide excellent opportunities to assess theoretical approaches on new data sets with a goal of gaining greater insight towards protein and ligand modeling. In the SAMPL5 experiment, cyclohexane-water partition coefficients were determined using a vertical solvation scheme in conjunction with the SMD continuum solvent model. Several DFT functionals partnered with correlation consistent basis sets were evaluated for the prediction of the partition coefficients. The approach chosen for the competition, a B3PW91 vertical solvation scheme, yields a mean absolute deviation of 1.9 logP units and performs well at estimating the correct hydrophilicity and hydrophobicity for the full SAMPL5 molecule set.

  20. Development and validation of an automated method for the liquid chromatographic determination of sotalol in plasma using dialysis and trace enrichment on a cation-exchange pre-column as on-line sample preparation.

    PubMed

    Chiap, P; Ceccato, A; Miralles Buraglia, B; Boulanger, B; Hubert, P; Crommen, J

    2001-03-01

    A fully automated method for the determination of sotalol in human plasma was developed, involving dialysis through a cellulose acetate membrane, clean-up and enrichment of the dialysate on a strong cation-exchange pre-column and subsequent liquid chromatographic (LC) analysis with UV detection. All sample handling operations were carried out by means of an ASTED system. Before starting dialysis, the trace enrichment column (TEC) was conditioned. The plasma sample, to which the internal standard (atenolol) was automatically added, was then loaded in the donor channel and was kept static while the dialysis liquid, consisting of 0.017 M acetic acid, was passed through the acceptor channel in successive pulses. After each pulse, the dialysate was dispensed onto the TEC. When dialysis was discontinued, the analytes were eluted from the TEC by the LC mobile phase by rotation of a switching valve and transferred to the analytical column packed with octyl silica. The LC mobile phase was a mixture of methanol and pH 7.0 phosphate buffer containing 1-octanesulfonate at a concentration of 7.5 x 10(-4) M (19:81; v/v). The UV detection was performed at 230 nm. The influence of several parameters of the dialysis and trace enrichment processes on analyte recovery and method selectivity was investigated. The method was then validated. The mean absolute recovery for sotalol was about 60%. The limit of quantitation was 25 ng/ml and R.S.D. for repeatability and intermediate precision obtained at a concentration level of 50 ng/ml were 4.3 and 5.8%, respectively.

  1. Optimal Subset Selection of Time-Series MODIS Images and Sample Data Transfer with Random Forests for Supervised Classification Modelling

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Fuqun; Zhang, Aining

    2016-01-01

    Nowadays, various time-series Earth Observation data with multiple bands are freely available, such as Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) datasets including 8-day composites from NASA, and 10-day composites from the Canada Centre for Remote Sensing (CCRS). It is challenging to efficiently use these time-series MODIS datasets for long-term environmental monitoring due to their vast volume and information redundancy. This challenge will be greater when Sentinel 2–3 data become available. Another challenge that researchers face is the lack of in-situ data for supervised modelling, especially for time-series data analysis. In this study, we attempt to tackle the two important issues with a case study of land cover mapping using CCRS 10-day MODIS composites with the help of Random Forests’ features: variable importance, outlier identification. The variable importance feature is used to analyze and select optimal subsets of time-series MODIS imagery for efficient land cover mapping, and the outlier identification feature is utilized for transferring sample data available from one year to an adjacent year for supervised classification modelling. The results of the case study of agricultural land cover classification at a regional scale show that using only about a half of the variables we can achieve land cover classification accuracy close to that generated using the full dataset. The proposed simple but effective solution of sample transferring could make supervised modelling possible for applications lacking sample data. PMID:27792152

  2. Optimal Subset Selection of Time-Series MODIS Images and Sample Data Transfer with Random Forests for Supervised Classification Modelling.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Fuqun; Zhang, Aining

    2016-10-25

    Nowadays, various time-series Earth Observation data with multiple bands are freely available, such as Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) datasets including 8-day composites from NASA, and 10-day composites from the Canada Centre for Remote Sensing (CCRS). It is challenging to efficiently use these time-series MODIS datasets for long-term environmental monitoring due to their vast volume and information redundancy. This challenge will be greater when Sentinel 2-3 data become available. Another challenge that researchers face is the lack of in-situ data for supervised modelling, especially for time-series data analysis. In this study, we attempt to tackle the two important issues with a case study of land cover mapping using CCRS 10-day MODIS composites with the help of Random Forests' features: variable importance, outlier identification. The variable importance feature is used to analyze and select optimal subsets of time-series MODIS imagery for efficient land cover mapping, and the outlier identification feature is utilized for transferring sample data available from one year to an adjacent year for supervised classification modelling. The results of the case study of agricultural land cover classification at a regional scale show that using only about a half of the variables we can achieve land cover classification accuracy close to that generated using the full dataset. The proposed simple but effective solution of sample transferring could make supervised modelling possible for applications lacking sample data.

  3. Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in human samples of mother-newborn pairs in South China and their placental transfer characteristics.

    PubMed

    Chen, Zhuo-Jia; Liu, Han-Yan; Cheng, Zhang; Man, Yu-Bon; Zhang, Kun-Shui; Wei, Wei; Du, Jun; Wong, Ming-Hung; Wang, Hong-Sheng

    2014-12-01

    There are limited data concerning the placenta transfer characteristics and accumulation of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in infants. However, PBDEs received increasing health concerns due to their endocrine disrupt and neurodevelopment toxicity effects. The present study assessed the accumulation of PBDEs in 30 paired placenta, breast milk, fetal cord blood, and neonatal urine samples collected from five major cities of the South China. The age of mothers ranged from 21 to 39 (mean 27.6±4.56). The ∑PBDE concentrations were 15.8±9.88 ng g(-1) lipid in placenta, 13.2±7.64 ng g(-1) lipid in breast milk, 16.5±19.5 ng g(-1) lipid in fetal cord blood, and 1.80±1.99 ng ml(-1) in neonatal urine. BDE-47 was the predominant congener in all types of human sample. Octa-BDEs such as BDE-196/-197 were detected highly in placenta and cord blood while moderately in breast milk and neonatal urine. Significant (p<0.01) correlations were observed for both total and most individual PBDEs in cord blood-maternal placenta and breast milk-urine paired individual samples. The extent of placental transfer of higher brominated BDEs such as BDE-196/-197 was greater than that of BDE-47. The estimated daily intake (EDI) analysis for breast-fed infants revealed that newborns in these areas were exposed to relatively high levels of PBDEs via breast milk. Our study not only provided systematic fundamental data for PBDE distribution but also revealed the placenta transfer characteristics of PBDE congeners in South China.

  4. Implementation of conduct of operations at Paducah uranium hexafluoride (UF{sub 6}) sampling and transfer facility

    SciTech Connect

    Penrod, S.R.

    1991-12-31

    This paper describes the initial planning and actual field activities associated with the implementation of {open_quotes}Conduct of Operations{close_quotes}. Conduct of Operations is an operating philosophy that was developed through the Institute of Nuclear Power Operations (INPO). Conduct of Operations covers many operating practices and is intended to provide formality and discipline to all aspects of plant operation. The implementation of these operating principles at the UF{sub 6} Sampling and Transfer Facility resulted in significant improvements in facility operations.

  5. Implementation of conduct of operations at Paducah uranium hexafluoride (UF{sub 6}) sampling and transfer facility

    SciTech Connect

    Penrod, S.R.

    1991-12-31

    This paper describes the initial planning and actual field activities associated with the implementation of {open_quotes}Conduct of Operations{close_quotes}, Conduct of Operations is an operating philosophy that was developed through the Institute of Nuclear Power Operations (INPO). Conduct of Operations covers many operating practices and is intended to provide formality and discipline to all aspects of plant operation. The implementation of these operating principles at the UF{sub 6} Sampling and Transfer Facility resulted in significant improvements in facility operations.

  6. Post-operative corticosterone levels in plasma and feces of mice subjected to permanent catheterization and automated blood sampling.

    PubMed

    Sundbom, Renée; Jacobsen, Kirsten R; Kalliokoski, Otto; Hau, Jann; Abelson, Klas S P

    2011-01-01

    This study investigated the effects of surgical placement of permanent arterial catheters on plasma corticosterone levels, fecal corticosterone excretion and body weight in male BALB/c/Sca mice. In addition, the effects of voluntarily ingested buprenorphine in doses of 0.5 and 1.0 mg/kg body weight on these parameters were studied. A catheter was placed in the carotid artery during isoflurane anesthesia. Immediately after surgery, the mice were connected to an AccuSampler® μ and blood samples for plasma corticosterone quantification were collected automatically during the first 24 h postoperatively. All fecal boli produced 24 h before and 24 h after surgery were collected for fecal corticosterone excretion measures and the pre- and post-operative body weights were registered. Plasma corticosterone levels were in the range of 150-300 ng/ml after the surgical procedure and the body weight was significantly lower 24 h after surgery compared to its pre-operative value. Contrary to what was expected, the total fecal corticosterone excretion was significantly reduced 24 h after surgery, as was the defecation. Buprenorphine treatment significantly lowered the plasma corticosterone levels, but had no effect on fecal corticosterone excretion or body weight change. It was concluded that surgical placement of an arterial catheter induces a significant stress response, as judged by its effect on plasma corticosterone and body weight. Voluntary ingestion of buprenorphine improved postoperative recovery by lowering plasma corticosterone concentrations. Neither fecal corticosterone excretion nor body weight change seems suitable for postoperative stress assessment in mice in the present experimental setup.

  7. A METHOD FOR AUTOMATED ANALYSIS OF 10 ML WATER SAMPLES CONTAINING ACIDIC, BASIC, AND NEUTRAL SEMIVOLATILE COMPOUNDS LISTED IN USEPA METHOD 8270 BY SOLID PHASE EXTRACTION COUPLED IN-LINE TO LARGE VOLUME INJECTION GAS CHROMATOGRAPHY/MASS SPECTROMETRY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Data is presented showing the progress made towards the development of a new automated system combining solid phase extraction (SPE) with gas chromatography/mass spectrometry for the single run analysis of water samples containing a broad range of acid, base and neutral compounds...

  8. System and method for laser assisted sample transfer to solution for chemical analysis

    DOEpatents

    Van Berkel, Gary J; Kertesz, Vilmos

    2014-01-28

    A system and method for laser desorption of an analyte from a specimen and capturing of the analyte in a suspended solvent to form a testing solution are described. The method can include providing a specimen supported by a desorption region of a specimen stage and desorbing an analyte from a target site of the specimen with a laser beam centered at a radiation wavelength (.lamda.). The desorption region is transparent to the radiation wavelength (.lamda.) and the sampling probe and a laser source emitting the laser beam are on opposite sides of a primary surface of the specimen stage. The system can also be arranged where the laser source and the sampling probe are on the same side of a primary surface of the specimen stage. The testing solution can then be analyzed using an analytical instrument or undergo further processing.

  9. Does Automated Feedback Improve Writing Quality?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilson, Joshua; Olinghouse, Natalie G.; Andrada, Gilbert N.

    2014-01-01

    The current study examines data from students in grades 4-8 who participated in a statewide computer-based benchmark writing assessment that featured automated essay scoring and automated feedback. We examined whether the use of automated feedback was associated with gains in writing quality across revisions to an essay, and with transfer effects…

  10. Calculating the free energy of transfer of small solutes into a model lipid membrane: Comparison between metadynamics and umbrella sampling

    SciTech Connect

    Bochicchio, Davide; Panizon, Emanuele; Ferrando, Riccardo; Rossi, Giulia; Monticelli, Luca

    2015-10-14

    We compare the performance of two well-established computational algorithms for the calculation of free-energy landscapes of biomolecular systems, umbrella sampling and metadynamics. We look at benchmark systems composed of polyethylene and polypropylene oligomers interacting with lipid (phosphatidylcholine) membranes, aiming at the calculation of the oligomer water-membrane free energy of transfer. We model our test systems at two different levels of description, united-atom and coarse-grained. We provide optimized parameters for the two methods at both resolutions. We devote special attention to the analysis of statistical errors in the two different methods and propose a general procedure for the error estimation in metadynamics simulations. Metadynamics and umbrella sampling yield the same estimates for the water-membrane free energy profile, but metadynamics can be more efficient, providing lower statistical uncertainties within the same simulation time.

  11. Robotic Arm Manipulator Using Active Control for Sample Acquisition and Transfer, and Passive Mode for Surface Compliance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Liu, Jun; Underhill, Michael L.; Trease, Brian P.; Lindemann, Randel A.

    2010-01-01

    A robotic arm that consists of three joints with four degrees of freedom (DOF) has been developed. It can carry an end-effector to acquire and transfer samples by using active control and comply with surface topology in a passive mode during a brief surface contact. The three joints are arranged in such a way that one joint of two DOFs is located at the shoulder, one joint of one DOF is located at the elbow, and one joint of one DOF is located at the wrist. Operationally, three DOFs are moved in the same plane, and the remaining one on the shoulder is moved perpendicular to the other three for better compliance with ground surface and more flexibility of sample handling. Three out of four joints are backdriveable, making the mechanism less complex and more cost effective

  12. Depth Transfer: Depth Extraction from Video Using Non-Parametric Sampling.

    PubMed

    Karsch, Kevin; Liu, Ce; Kang, Sing Bing

    2014-11-01

    We describe a technique that automatically generates plausible depth maps from videos using non-parametric depth sampling. We demonstrate our technique in cases where past methods fail (non-translating cameras and dynamic scenes). Our technique is applicable to single images as well as videos. For videos, we use local motion cues to improve the inferred depth maps, while optical flow is used to ensure temporal depth consistency. For training and evaluation, we use a Kinect-based system to collect a large data set containing stereoscopic videos with known depths. We show that our depth estimation technique outperforms the state-of-the-art on benchmark databases. Our technique can be used to automatically convert a monoscopic video into stereo for 3D visualization, and we demonstrate this through a variety of visually pleasing results for indoor and outdoor scenes, including results from the feature film Charade.

  13. Pneumatic sample-transfer system for use with the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory rotating target neutron source (RTNS-I)

    SciTech Connect

    Williams, R.E.

    1981-07-01

    A pneumatic sample-transfer system is needed to be able to rapidly retrieve samples irradiated with 14-MeV neutrons at the Rotating Target Neutron Source (RTNS-I). The rabbit system, already in place for many years, has been refurbished with modern system components controlled by an LSI-11 minicomputer. Samples can now be counted three seconds after an irradiation. There are many uses for this expanded 14-MeV neutron activation capability. Several fission products difficult to isolate from mixed fission fragments can be produced instead through (n,p) or (n,..cap alpha..) reactions with stable isotopes. Mass-separated samples of Nd, Mo, and Se, for example, can be irradiated to produce Pr, Nb, and As radionuclides sufficient for decay scheme studies. The system may also be used for multielement fast-neutron activation analysis because the neutron flux is greater than 2 x 10/sup 11/ n/cm/sup 2/-sec. Single element analyses of Si and O are also possible. Finally, measurements of fast-neutron cross sections producing short-lived activation products can be performed with this system. A description of the rabbit system and instructions for its use are presented in this report.

  14. First evaluation of automated specimen inoculation for wound swab samples by use of the Previ Isola system compared to manual inoculation in a routine laboratory: finding a cost-effective and accurate approach.

    PubMed

    Mischnik, Alexander; Mieth, Markus; Busch, Cornelius J; Hofer, Stefan; Zimmermann, Stefan

    2012-08-01

    Automation of plate streaking is ongoing in clinical microbiological laboratories, but evaluation for routine use is mostly open. In the present study, the recovery of microorganisms from the Previ Isola system plated polyurethane (PU) swab samples is compared to manually plated control viscose swab samples from wounds according to the CLSI procedure M40-A (quality control of microbiological transport systems). One hundred twelve paired samples (224 swabs) were analyzed. In 80/112 samples (71%), concordant culture results were obtained with the two methods. In 32/112 samples (29%), CFU recovery of microorganisms from the two methods was discordant. In 24 (75%) of the 32 paired samples with a discordant result, Previ Isola plated PU swabs were superior. In 8 (25%) of the 32 paired samples with a discordant result, control viscose swabs were superior. The quality of colony growth on culture media for further investigations was superior with Previ Isola inoculated plates compared to manual plating techniques. Gram stain results were concordant between the two methods in 62/112 samples (55%). In 50/112 samples (45%), the results of Gram staining were discordant between the two methods. In 34 (68%) of the 50 paired samples with discordant results, Gram staining of PU swabs was superior to that of control viscose swabs. In 16 (32%) of the 50 paired samples, Gram staining of control viscose swabs was superior to that of PU swabs. We report the first clinical evaluation of Previ Isola automated specimen inoculation for wound swab samples. This study suggests that use of an automated specimen inoculation system has good results with regard to CFU recovery, quality of Gram staining, and accuracy of diagnosis.

  15. Testing of an automated online EA-IRMS method for fast and simultaneous carbon content and stable isotope measurement of aerosol samples

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Major, István; Gyökös, Brigitta; Túri, Marianna; Futó, István; Filep, Ágnes; Hoffer, András; Molnár, Mihály

    2016-04-01

    Comprehensive atmospheric studies have demonstrated that carbonaceous aerosol is one of the main components of atmospheric particulate matter over Europe. Various methods, considering optical or thermal properties, have been developed for quantification of the accurate amount of both organic and elemental carbon constituents of atmospheric aerosol. The aim of our work was to develop an alternative fast and easy method for determination of the total carbon content of individual aerosol samples collected on prebaked quartz filters whereby the mass and surface concentration becomes simply computable. We applied the conventional "elemental analyzer (EA) coupled online with an isotope ratio mass spectrometer (IRMS)" technique which is ubiquitously used in mass spectrometry. Using this technique we are able to measure simultaneously the carbon stable isotope ratio of the samples, as well. During the developing process, we compared the EA-IRMS technique with an off-line catalytic combustion method worked out previously at Hertelendi Laboratory of Environmental Studies (HEKAL). We tested the combined online total carbon content and stable isotope ratio measurement both on standard materials and real aerosol samples. Regarding the test results the novel method assures, on the one hand, at least 95% of carbon recovery yield in a broad total carbon mass range (between 100 and 3000 ug) and, on the other hand, a good reproducibility of stable isotope measurements with an uncertainty of ± 0.2 per mill. Comparing the total carbon results obtained by the EA-IRMS and the off-line catalytic combustion method we found a very good correlation (R2=0.94) that proves the applicability of both preparation method. Advantages of the novel method are the fast and simplified sample preparation steps and the fully automated, simultaneous carbon stable isotope ratio measurement processes. Furthermore stable isotope ratio results can effectively be applied in the source apportionment

  16. Automated Methods for Multiplexed Pathogen Detection

    SciTech Connect

    Straub, Tim M.; Dockendorff, Brian P.; Quinonez-Diaz, Maria D.; Valdez, Catherine O.; Shutthanandan, Janani I.; Tarasevich, Barbara J.; Grate, Jay W.; Bruckner-Lea, Cindy J.

    2005-09-01

    Detection of pathogenic microorganisms in environmental samples is a difficult process. Concentration of the organisms of interest also co-concentrates inhibitors of many end-point detection methods, notably, nucleic acid methods. In addition, sensitive, highly multiplexed pathogen detection continues to be problematic. The primary function of the BEADS (Biodetection Enabling Analyte Delivery System) platform is the automated concentration and purification of target analytes from interfering substances, often present in these samples, via a renewable surface column. In one version of BEADS, automated immunomagnetic separation (IMS) is used to separate cells from their samples. Captured cells are transferred to a flow-through thermal cycler where PCR, using labeled primers, is performed. PCR products are then detected by hybridization to a DNA suspension array. In another version of BEADS, cell lysis is performed, and community RNA is purified and directly labeled. Multiplexed detection is accomplished by direct hybridization of the RNA to a planar microarray. The integrated IMS/PCR version of BEADS can successfully purify and amplify 10 E. coli O157:H7 cells from river water samples. Multiplexed PCR assays for the simultaneous detection of E. coli O157:H7, Salmonella, and Shigella on bead suspension arrays was demonstrated for the detection of as few as 100 cells for each organism. Results for the RNA version of BEADS are also showing promising results. Automation yields highly purified RNA, suitable for multiplexed detection on microarrays, with microarray detection specificity equivalent to PCR. Both versions of the BEADS platform show great promise for automated pathogen detection from environmental samples. Highly multiplexed pathogen detection using PCR continues to be problematic, but may be required for trace detection in large volume samples. The RNA approach solves the issues of highly multiplexed PCR and provides ''live vs. dead'' capabilities. However

  17. Automated methods for multiplexed pathogen detection.

    PubMed

    Straub, Timothy M; Dockendorff, Brian P; Quiñonez-Díaz, Maria D; Valdez, Catherine O; Shutthanandan, Janani I; Tarasevich, Barbara J; Grate, Jay W; Bruckner-Lea, Cynthia J

    2005-09-01

    Detection of pathogenic microorganisms in environmental samples is a difficult process. Concentration of the organisms of interest also co-concentrates inhibitors of many end-point detection methods, notably, nucleic acid methods. In addition, sensitive, highly multiplexed pathogen detection continues to be problematic. The primary function of the BEADS (Biodetection Enabling Analyte Delivery System) platform is the automated concentration and purification of target analytes from interfering substances, often present in these samples, via a renewable surface column. In one version of BEADS, automated immunomagnetic separation (IMS) is used to separate cells from their samples. Captured cells are transferred to a flow-through thermal cycler where PCR, using labeled primers, is performed. PCR products are then detected by hybridization to a DNA suspension array. In another version of BEADS, cell lysis is performed, and community RNA is purified and directly labeled. Multiplexed detection is accomplished by direct hybridization of the RNA to a planar microarray. The integrated IMS/PCR version of BEADS can successfully purify and amplify 10 E. coli O157:H7 cells from river water samples. Multiplexed PCR assays for the simultaneous detection of E. coli O157:H7, Salmonella, and Shigella on bead suspension arrays was demonstrated for the detection of as few as 100 cells for each organism. Results for the RNA version of BEADS are also showing promising results. Automation yields highly purified RNA, suitable for multiplexed detection on microarrays, with microarray detection specificity equivalent to PCR. Both versions of the BEADS platform show great promise for automated pathogen detection from environmental samples. Highly multiplexed pathogen detection using PCR continues to be problematic, but may be required for trace detection in large volume samples. The RNA approach solves the issues of highly multiplexed PCR and provides "live vs. dead" capabilities. However

  18. 12 CFR 1005.16 - Disclosures at automated teller machines.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 12 Banks and Banking 8 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Disclosures at automated teller machines. 1005... TRANSFERS (REGULATION E) § 1005.16 Disclosures at automated teller machines. (a) Definition. “Automated teller machine operator” means any person that operates an automated teller machine at which a...

  19. 12 CFR 1005.16 - Disclosures at automated teller machines.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 12 Banks and Banking 8 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Disclosures at automated teller machines. 1005... TRANSFERS (REGULATION E) General § 1005.16 Disclosures at automated teller machines. (a) Definition. “Automated teller machine operator” means any person that operates an automated teller machine at which...

  20. 12 CFR 1005.16 - Disclosures at automated teller machines.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 12 Banks and Banking 8 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Disclosures at automated teller machines. 1005... TRANSFERS (REGULATION E) General § 1005.16 Disclosures at automated teller machines. (a) Definition. “Automated teller machine operator” means any person that operates an automated teller machine at which...

  1. Differential proteomic analysis of mouse macrophages exposed to adsorbate-loaded heavy fuel oil derived combustion particles using an automated sample-preparation workflow.

    PubMed

    Kanashova, Tamara; Popp, Oliver; Orasche, Jürgen; Karg, Erwin; Harndorf, Horst; Stengel, Benjamin; Sklorz, Martin; Streibel, Thorsten; Zimmermann, Ralf; Dittmar, Gunnar

    2015-08-01

    Ship diesel combustion particles are known to cause broad cytotoxic effects and thereby strongly impact human health. Particles from heavy fuel oil (HFO) operated ships are considered as particularly dangerous. However, little is known about the relevant components of the ship emission particles. In particular, it is interesting to know if the particle cores, consisting of soot and metal oxides, or the adsorbate layers, consisting of semi- and low-volatile organic compounds and salts, are more relevant. We therefore sought to relate the adsorbates and the core composition of HFO combustion particles to the early cellular responses, allowing for the development of measures that counteract their detrimental effects. Hence, the semi-volatile coating of HFO-operated ship diesel engine particles was removed by stepwise thermal stripping using different temperatures. RAW 264.7 macrophages were exposed to native and thermally stripped particles in submersed culture. Proteomic changes were monitored by two different quantitative mass spectrometry approaches, stable isotope labeling by amino acids in cell culture (SILAC) and dimethyl labeling. Our data revealed that cells reacted differently to native or stripped HFO combustion particles. Cells exposed to thermally stripped particles showed a very differential reaction with respect to the composition of the individual chemical load of the particle. The cellular reactions of the HFO particles included reaction to oxidative stress, reorganization of the cytoskeleton and changes in endocytosis. Cells exposed to the 280 °C treated particles showed an induction of RNA-related processes, a number of mitochondria-associated processes as well as DNA damage response, while the exposure to 580 °C treated HFO particles mainly induced the regulation of intracellular transport. In summary, our analysis based on a highly reproducible automated proteomic sample-preparation procedure shows a diverse cellular response, depending on the

  2. 21 CFR 864.5200 - Automated cell counter.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2013-04-01 2013-04-01 false Automated cell counter. 864.5200 Section 864.5200....5200 Automated cell counter. (a) Identification. An automated cell counter is a fully-automated or semi-automated device used to count red blood cells, white blood cells, or blood platelets using a sample of...

  3. 21 CFR 864.5200 - Automated cell counter.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Automated cell counter. 864.5200 Section 864.5200....5200 Automated cell counter. (a) Identification. An automated cell counter is a fully-automated or semi-automated device used to count red blood cells, white blood cells, or blood platelets using a sample of...

  4. 21 CFR 864.5200 - Automated cell counter.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2012-04-01 2012-04-01 false Automated cell counter. 864.5200 Section 864.5200....5200 Automated cell counter. (a) Identification. An automated cell counter is a fully-automated or semi-automated device used to count red blood cells, white blood cells, or blood platelets using a sample of...

  5. 21 CFR 864.5200 - Automated cell counter.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Automated cell counter. 864.5200 Section 864.5200....5200 Automated cell counter. (a) Identification. An automated cell counter is a fully-automated or semi-automated device used to count red blood cells, white blood cells, or blood platelets using a sample of...

  6. 21 CFR 864.5200 - Automated cell counter.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Automated cell counter. 864.5200 Section 864.5200....5200 Automated cell counter. (a) Identification. An automated cell counter is a fully-automated or semi-automated device used to count red blood cells, white blood cells, or blood platelets using a sample of...

  7. Analysis of nitrosamines in water by automated SPE and isotope dilution GC/HRMS Occurrence in the different steps of a drinking water treatment plant, and in chlorinated samples from a reservoir and a sewage treatment plant effluent.

    PubMed

    Planas, Carles; Palacios, Oscar; Ventura, Francesc; Rivera, Josep; Caixach, Josep

    2008-08-15

    A method based on automated solid-phase extraction (SPE) and isotope dilution gas chromatography/high resolution mass spectrometry (GC/HRMS) has been developed for the analysis of nine nitrosamines in water samples. The combination of automated SPE and GC/HRMS for the analysis of nitrosamines has not been reported previously. The method shows as advantages the selectivity and sensitivity of GC/HRMS analysis and the high efficiency of automated SPE with coconut charcoal EPA 521 cartridges. Low method detection limits (MDLs) were achieved, along with a greater facility of the procedure and less dependence on the operator with regard to the methods based on manual SPE. Quality requirements for isotope dilution-based methods were accomplished for most analysed nitrosamines, regarding to trueness (80-120%), method precision (<15%) and MDLs (0.08-1.7 ng/L). Nineteen water samples (16 samples from a drinking water treatment plant {DWTP}, 2 chlorinated samples from a sewage treatment plant {STP} effluent, and 1 chlorinated sample from a reservoir) were analysed. Concentrations of nitrosamines in the STP effluent were 309.4 and 730.2 ng/L, being higher when higher doses of chlorine were applied. N-Nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) and N-nitrosodiethylamine (NDEA) were the main compounds identified in the STP effluent, and NDEA was detected above 200 ng/L, regulatory level for NDMA in effluents stated in Ontario (Canada). Lower concentrations of nitrosamines were found in the reservoir (20.3 ng/L) and in the DWTP samples (n.d. -28.6 ng/L). NDMA and NDEA were respectively found in the reservoir and in treated and highly chlorinated DWTP samples at concentrations above 10 ng/L (guide value established in different countries). The highest concentrations of nitrosamines were found after chlorination and ozonation processes (ozonated, treated and highly chlorinated water) in DWTP samples.

  8. Automated harvesting and processing of protein crystals through laser photoablation.

    PubMed

    Zander, Ulrich; Hoffmann, Guillaume; Cornaciu, Irina; Marquette, Jean-Pierre; Papp, Gergely; Landret, Christophe; Seroul, Gaël; Sinoir, Jérémy; Röwer, Martin; Felisaz, Frank; Rodriguez-Puente, Sonia; Mariaule, Vincent; Murphy, Peter; Mathieu, Magali; Cipriani, Florent; Márquez, José Antonio

    2016-04-01

    Currently, macromolecular crystallography projects often require the use of highly automated facilities for crystallization and X-ray data collection. However, crystal harvesting and processing largely depend on manual operations. Here, a series of new methods are presented based on the use of a low X-ray-background film as a crystallization support and a photoablation laser that enable the automation of major operations required for the preparation of crystals for X-ray diffraction experiments. In this approach, the controlled removal of the mother liquor before crystal mounting simplifies the cryocooling process, in many cases eliminating the use of cryoprotectant agents, while crystal-soaking experiments are performed through diffusion, precluding the need for repeated sample-recovery and transfer operations. Moreover, the high-precision laser enables new mounting strategies that are not accessible through other methods. This approach bridges an important gap in automation and can contribute to expanding the capabilities of modern macromolecular crystallography facilities.

  9. Automated harvesting and processing of protein crystals through laser photoablation

    PubMed Central

    Zander, Ulrich; Hoffmann, Guillaume; Cornaciu, Irina; Marquette, Jean-Pierre; Papp, Gergely; Landret, Christophe; Seroul, Gaël; Sinoir, Jérémy; Röwer, Martin; Felisaz, Frank; Rodriguez-Puente, Sonia; Mariaule, Vincent; Murphy, Peter; Mathieu, Magali; Cipriani, Florent; Márquez, José Antonio

    2016-01-01

    Currently, macromolecular crystallography projects often require the use of highly automated facilities for crystallization and X-ray data collection. However, crystal harvesting and processing largely depend on manual operations. Here, a series of new methods are presented based on the use of a low X-ray-background film as a crystallization support and a photoablation laser that enable the automation of major operations required for the preparation of crystals for X-ray diffraction experiments. In this approach, the controlled removal of the mother liquor before crystal mounting simplifies the cryocooling process, in many cases eliminating the use of cryoprotectant agents, while crystal-soaking experiments are performed through diffusion, precluding the need for repeated sample-recovery and transfer operations. Moreover, the high-precision laser enables new mounting strategies that are not accessible through other methods. This approach bridges an important gap in automation and can contribute to expanding the capabilities of modern macromolecular crystallography facilities. PMID:27050125

  10. Automation or De-automation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gorlach, Igor; Wessel, Oliver

    2008-09-01

    In the global automotive industry, for decades, vehicle manufacturers have continually increased the level of automation of production systems in order to be competitive. However, there is a new trend to decrease the level of automation, especially in final car assembly, for reasons of economy and flexibility. In this research, the final car assembly lines at three production sites of Volkswagen are analysed in order to determine the best level of automation for each, in terms of manufacturing costs, productivity, quality and flexibility. The case study is based on the methodology proposed by the Fraunhofer Institute. The results of the analysis indicate that fully automated assembly systems are not necessarily the best option in terms of cost, productivity and quality combined, which is attributed to high complexity of final car assembly systems; some de-automation is therefore recommended. On the other hand, the analysis shows that low automation can result in poor product quality due to reasons related to plant location, such as inadequate workers' skills, motivation, etc. Hence, the automation strategy should be formulated on the basis of analysis of all relevant aspects of the manufacturing process, such as costs, quality, productivity and flexibility in relation to the local context. A more balanced combination of automated and manual assembly operations provides better utilisation of equipment, reduces production costs and improves throughput.

  11. Metrology automation reliability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chain, Elizabeth E.

    1996-09-01

    At Motorola's MOS-12 facility automated measurements on 200- mm diameter wafers proceed in a hands-off 'load-and-go' mode requiring only wafer loading, measurement recipe loading, and a 'run' command for processing. Upon completion of all sample measurements, the data is uploaded to the factory's data collection software system via a SECS II interface, eliminating the requirement of manual data entry. The scope of in-line measurement automation has been extended to the entire metrology scheme from job file generation to measurement and data collection. Data analysis and comparison to part specification limits is also carried out automatically. Successful integration of automated metrology into the factory measurement system requires that automated functions, such as autofocus and pattern recognition algorithms, display a high degree of reliability. In the 24- hour factory reliability data can be collected automatically on every part measured. This reliability data is then uploaded to the factory data collection software system at the same time as the measurement data. Analysis of the metrology reliability data permits improvements to be made as needed, and provides an accurate accounting of automation reliability. This reliability data has so far been collected for the CD-SEM (critical dimension scanning electron microscope) metrology tool, and examples are presented. This analysis method can be applied to such automated in-line measurements as CD, overlay, particle and film thickness measurements.

  12. Automated headspace-solid-phase micro extraction-retention time locked-isotope dilution gas chromatography-mass spectrometry for the analysis of organotin compounds in water and sediment samples.

    PubMed

    Devosa, Christophe; Vliegen, Maarten; Willaert, Bart; David, Frank; Moens, Luc; Sandra, Pat

    2005-06-24

    An automated method for the simultaneous determination of six important organotin compounds namely monobutyltin (MBT), dibutyltin (DBT), tributyltin (TBT), monophenyltin (MPhT), diphenyltin (DPhT) and triphenyltin (TPhT) in water and sediment samples is described. The method is based on derivatization with sodium tetraethylborate followed by automated headspace-solid-phase micro extraction (SPME) combined with GC-MS under retention time locked (RTL) conditions. Home-synthesized deuterated organotin analogues were used as internal standards. Two high abundant fragment ions corresponding to the main tin isotopes Sn118 and Sn120 were chosen; one for quantification and one as qualifier ion. The method was validated and excellent figures of merit were obtained. Limits of quantification (LOQs) are from 1.3 to 15 ng l(-1) (ppt) for water samples and from 1.0 to 6.3 microg kg(-1) (ppb) for sediment samples. Accuracy for sediment samples was tested on spiked real-life sediment samples and on a reference PACS-2 marine harbor sediment. The developed method was used in a case-study at the harbor of Antwerp where sediment samples in different areas were taken and subsequently screened for TBT contamination. Concentrations ranged from 15 microg kg(-1) in the port of Antwerp up to 43 mg kg(-1) near a ship repair unit.

  13. Fully automated protein purification

    PubMed Central

    Camper, DeMarco V.; Viola, Ronald E.

    2009-01-01

    Obtaining highly purified proteins is essential to begin investigating their functional and structural properties. The steps that are typically involved in purifying proteins can include an initial capture, intermediate purification, and a final polishing step. Completing these steps can take several days and require frequent attention to ensure success. Our goal was to design automated protocols that will allow the purification of proteins with minimal operator intervention. Separate methods have been produced and tested that automate the sample loading, column washing, sample elution and peak collection steps for ion-exchange, metal affinity, hydrophobic interaction and gel filtration chromatography. These individual methods are designed to be coupled and run sequentially in any order to achieve a flexible and fully automated protein purification protocol. PMID:19595984

  14. Aptasensor based on fluorescence resonance energy transfer for the analysis of adenosine in urine samples of lung cancer patients.

    PubMed

    Hashemian, Zahra; Khayamian, Taghi; Saraji, Mohammad; Shirani, Marziyeh Poshteh

    2016-05-15

    A new aptasensor was designed for the analysis of adenosine based on fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) between CdS quantum dot (QDs) as a donor and polypyrrole (Ppy) as an acceptor. The QDs were covalently bonded to anti-adenosine aptamer where its fluorescence was quenched by Ppy. When Ppy was replaced by adenosine, the fluorescence of QDs was restored and its intensity was proportional to the adenosine concentration. Under the optimized conditions, a linear range was found to be 23-146 nM with a detection limit of 9.3 nM. The method was used for analysis of adenosine in urine samples of lung cancer patients and its accuracy was evaluated by comparison of the results of the proposed method with the standard method of HPLC-UV. Furthermore, the interactions of adenosine molecules with the aptamer were investigated using molecular modeling, including molecular dynamic simulations (MDS). The results demonstrated that each G-quadruplex aptamer can capture two adenosine molecules.

  15. Transfer and Evaluation of an Automated, Low-Cost Real-Time Reverse Transcription-PCR Test for Diagnosis and Monitoring of Human Immunodeficiency Virus Type 1 Infection in a West African Resource-Limited Setting

    PubMed Central

    Rouet, Francois; Ekouevi, Didier K.; Chaix, Marie-Laure; Burgard, Marianne; Inwoley, Andre; Tony, Thomas D'Aquin; Danel, Christine; Anglaret, Xavier; Leroy, Valeriane; Msellati, Philippe; Dabis, Francois; Rouzioux, Christine

    2005-01-01

    There is an urgent need for low-cost human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) viral load (VL) monitoring technologies in resource-limited settings. An automated TaqMan real-time reverse transcription-PCR (RT-PCR) assay was transferred to the laboratory of the Centre de Diagnostic et de Recherches sur le SIDA, Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire, and assessed for HIV-1 RNA VL testing in 806 plasma samples collected within four ANRS research programs. The detection threshold and reproducibility of the assay were first determined. The quantitative results obtained with this assay were compared with two commercial HIV-1 RNA kits (the Versant version 3.0 and Monitor version 1.5 assays) in specimens harboring mainly the circulating recombinant form 02 strain (CRF02). The clinical evaluation of this test was done in different situations including the early diagnosis of pediatric infection and the monitoring of antiretroviral-treated patients. The quantification limit of our method was 300 copies/ml. The HIV-1 RNA values obtained by real-time PCR assay were highly correlated with those obtained by the Versant kit (r = 0.901; P < 0.001) and the Monitor test (r = 0.856; P < 0.001) and homogeneously distributed according to HIV-1 genotypes. For the early diagnosis of pediatric HIV-1 infection, the sensitivity and specificity of the real-time PCR assay were both 100% (95% confidence intervals of 93.7 to 100.0 and 98.3 to 100.0, respectively), compared to the Versant results. Following initiation of antiretroviral treatment, the kinetics of HIV-1 RNA levels were very comparable, with a similar proportion of adults and children below the detection limit during follow-up with our technique and the Versant assay. The TaqMan real-time PCR ($12 per test) is now routinely used to monitor HIV-1 infection in our laboratory. This technology should be further evaluated in limited-resource countries where strains other than CRF02 are prevalent. PMID:15956387

  16. Automation pilot

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1983-01-01

    An important concept of the Action Information Management System (AIMS) approach is to evaluate office automation technology in the context of hands on use by technical program managers in the conduct of human acceptance difficulties which may accompany the transition to a significantly changing work environment. The improved productivity and communications which result from application of office automation technology are already well established for general office environments, but benefits unique to NASA are anticipated and these will be explored in detail.

  17. Office automation.

    PubMed

    Arenson, R L

    1986-03-01

    By now, the term "office automation" should have more meaning for those readers who are not intimately familiar with the subject. Not all of the preceding material pertains to every department or practice, but certainly, word processing and simple telephone management are key items. The size and complexity of the organization will dictate the usefulness of electronic mail and calendar management, and the individual radiologist's personal needs and habits will determine the usefulness of the home computer. Perhaps the most important ingredient for success in the office automation arena relates to the ability to integrate information from various systems in a simple and flexible manner. Unfortunately, this is perhaps the one area that most office automation systems have ignored or handled poorly. In the personal computer world, there has been much emphasis recently on integration of packages such as spreadsheet, database management, word processing, graphics, time management, and communications. This same philosophy of integration has been applied to a few office automation systems, but these are generally vendor-specific and do not allow for a mixture of foreign subsystems. During the next few years, it is likely that a few vendors will emerge as dominant in this integrated office automation field and will stress simplicity and flexibility as major components.

  18. Habitat automation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Swab, Rodney E.

    1992-01-01

    A habitat, on either the surface of the Moon or Mars, will be designed and built with the proven technologies of that day. These technologies will be mature and readily available to the habitat designer. We believe an acceleration of the normal pace of automation would allow a habitat to be safer and more easily maintained than would be the case otherwise. This document examines the operation of a habitat and describes elements of that operation which may benefit from an increased use of automation. Research topics within the automation realm are then defined and discussed with respect to the role they can have in the design of the habitat. Problems associated with the integration of advanced technologies into real-world projects at NASA are also addressed.

  19. Terminal automation system maintenance

    SciTech Connect

    Coffelt, D.; Hewitt, J.

    1997-01-01

    Nothing has improved petroleum product loading in recent years more than terminal automation systems. The presence of terminal automation systems (TAS) at loading racks has increased operational efficiency and safety and enhanced their accounting and management capabilities. However, like all finite systems, they occasionally malfunction or fail. Proper servicing and maintenance can minimize this. And in the unlikely event a TAS breakdown does occur, prompt and effective troubleshooting can reduce its impact on terminal productivity. To accommodate around-the-clock loading at racks, increasingly unattended by terminal personnel, TAS maintenance, servicing and troubleshooting has become increasingly demanding. It has also become increasingly important. After 15 years of trial and error at petroleum and petrochemical storage and transfer terminals, a number of successful troubleshooting programs have been developed. These include 24-hour {open_quotes}help hotlines,{close_quotes} internal (terminal company) and external (supplier) support staff, and {open_quotes}layered{close_quotes} support. These programs are described.

  20. Validation of heat transfer, thermal decomposition, and container pressurization of polyurethane foam using mean value and Latin hypercube sampling approaches

    SciTech Connect

    Scott, Sarah N.; Dodd, Amanda B.; Larsen, Marvin E.; Suo-Anttila, Jill M.; Erickson, Ken L.

    2014-12-09

    In this study, polymer foam encapsulants provide mechanical, electrical, and thermal isolation in engineered systems. It can be advantageous to surround objects of interest, such as electronics, with foams in a hermetically sealed container in order to protect them from hostile environments or from accidents such as fire. In fire environments, gas pressure from thermal decomposition of foams can cause mechanical failure of sealed systems. In this work, a detailed uncertainty quantification study of polymeric methylene diisocyanate (PMDI)-polyether-polyol based polyurethane foam is presented and compared to experimental results to assess the validity of a 3-D finite element model of the heat transfer and degradation processes. In this series of experiments, 320 kg/m3 PMDI foam in a 0.2 L sealed steel container is heated to 1,073 K at a rate of 150 K/min. The experiment ends when the can breaches due to the buildup of pressure. The temperature at key location is monitored as well as the internal pressure of the can. Both experimental uncertainty and computational uncertainty are examined and compared. The mean value method (MV) and Latin hypercube sampling (LHS) approach are used to propagate the uncertainty through the model. The results of the both the MV method and the LHS approach show that while the model generally can predict the temperature at given locations in the system, it is less successful at predicting the pressure response. Also, these two approaches for propagating uncertainty agree with each other, the importance of each input parameter on the simulation results is also investigated, showing that for the temperature response the conductivity of the steel container and the effective conductivity of the foam, are the most important parameters. For the pressure response, the activation energy, effective conductivity, and specific heat are most important. The comparison to experiments and the identification of the drivers of uncertainty allow

  1. Validation of heat transfer, thermal decomposition, and container pressurization of polyurethane foam using mean value and Latin hypercube sampling approaches

    DOE PAGES

    Scott, Sarah N.; Dodd, Amanda B.; Larsen, Marvin E.; ...

    2014-12-09

    In this study, polymer foam encapsulants provide mechanical, electrical, and thermal isolation in engineered systems. It can be advantageous to surround objects of interest, such as electronics, with foams in a hermetically sealed container in order to protect them from hostile environments or from accidents such as fire. In fire environments, gas pressure from thermal decomposition of foams can cause mechanical failure of sealed systems. In this work, a detailed uncertainty quantification study of polymeric methylene diisocyanate (PMDI)-polyether-polyol based polyurethane foam is presented and compared to experimental results to assess the validity of a 3-D finite element model of themore » heat transfer and degradation processes. In this series of experiments, 320 kg/m3 PMDI foam in a 0.2 L sealed steel container is heated to 1,073 K at a rate of 150 K/min. The experiment ends when the can breaches due to the buildup of pressure. The temperature at key location is monitored as well as the internal pressure of the can. Both experimental uncertainty and computational uncertainty are examined and compared. The mean value method (MV) and Latin hypercube sampling (LHS) approach are used to propagate the uncertainty through the model. The results of the both the MV method and the LHS approach show that while the model generally can predict the temperature at given locations in the system, it is less successful at predicting the pressure response. Also, these two approaches for propagating uncertainty agree with each other, the importance of each input parameter on the simulation results is also investigated, showing that for the temperature response the conductivity of the steel container and the effective conductivity of the foam, are the most important parameters. For the pressure response, the activation energy, effective conductivity, and specific heat are most important. The comparison to experiments and the identification of the drivers of uncertainty allow for

  2. A 1. 5--4 Kelvin detachable cold-sample transfer system: Application to inertially confined fusion with spin-polarized hydrogens fuels

    SciTech Connect

    Alexander, N.; Barden, J.; Fan, Q.; Honig, A.

    1990-01-01

    A compact cold-transfer apparatus for engaging and retrieving samples at liquid helium temperatures (1.5--4K), maintaining the samples at such temperatures for periods of hours, and subsequently inserting them in diverse apparatuses followed by disengagement, is described. The properties of several thermal radiation-insulating shrouds, necessary for very low sample temperatures, are presented. The immediate intended application is transportable target-shells containing highly spin-polarized deuterons in solid HD or D{sub 2} for inertially confined fusion (ICF) experiments. The system is also valuable for unpolarized high-density fusion fuels, as well as for other applications which are discussed. 9 refs., 6 figs.

  3. A revolutionary graphitisation system: Fully automated, compact and simple

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wacker, L.; Němec, M.; Bourquin, J.

    2010-04-01

    A new graphitisation system, directly coupled to an elemental analyser, has been developed for convenient, fast and efficient sample preparations for radiocarbon measurement by means of accelerator mass spectrometry. We demonstrate an alternative to the cryogenic transport of CO 2 into the graphitisation reactors with liquid nitrogen, which is used by others. Instead, the CO 2 coming from an EA is absorbed on a single column filled with zeolite. The CO 2 can then be easily released by heating the zeolite trap and transferred to the reactor by gas expansion. The system is simple and fully automated for sample combustion and graphitisation.

  4. DRAFT - Design of Radiological Survey and Sampling to Support Title Transfer or Lease of Property on the Department of Energy Oak Ridge Reservation

    SciTech Connect

    Cusick L.T.

    2002-09-25

    The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) owns, operates, and manages the buildings and land areas on the Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR) in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. As land and buildings are declared excess or underutilized, it is the intent of DOE to either transfer the title of or lease suitable property to the Community Reuse Organization of East Tennessee (CROET) or other entities for public use. It is DOE's responsibility, in coordination with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Region 4, and the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC), to ensure that the land, facilities, and personal property that are to have the title transferred or are to be leased are suitable for public use. Release of personal property must also meet site requirements and be approved by the DOE contractor responsible for site radiological control. The terms title transfer and lease in this document have unique meanings. Title transfer will result in release of ownership without any restriction or further control by DOE. Under lease conditions, the government retains ownership of the property along with the responsibility to oversee property utilization. This includes involvement in the lessee's health, safety, and radiological control plans and conduct of site inspections. It may also entail lease restrictions, such as limiting access to certain areas or prohibiting digging, drilling, or disturbing material under surface coatings. Survey and sampling requirements are generally more rigorous for title transfer than for lease. Because of the accelerated clean up process, there is an increasing emphasis on title transfers of facilities and land. The purpose of this document is to describe the radiological survey and sampling protocols that are being used for assessing the radiological conditions and characteristics of building and land areas on the Oak Ridge Reservation that contain space potentially available for title transfer or lease. After necessary surveys and

  5. Automated verification system user's guide

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hoffman, R. H.

    1972-01-01

    Descriptions of the operational requirements for all of the programs of the Automated Verification System (AVS) are provided. The AVS programs are: (1) FORTRAN code analysis and instrumentation program (QAMOD); (2) Test Effectiveness Evaluation Program (QAPROC); (3) Transfer Control Variable Tracking Program (QATRAK); (4) Program Anatomy Table Generator (TABGEN); and (5) Network Path Analysis Program (RAMBLE).

  6. Automation; The New Industrial Revolution.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Arnstein, George E.

    Automation is a word that describes the workings of computers and the innovations of automatic transfer machines in the factory. As the hallmark of the new industrial revolution, computers displace workers and create a need for new skills and retraining programs. With improved communication between industry and the educational community to…

  7. Automating Finance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moore, John

    2007-01-01

    In past years, higher education's financial management side has been riddled with manual processes and aging mainframe applications. This article discusses schools which had taken advantage of an array of technologies that automate billing, payment processing, and refund processing in the case of overpayment. The investments are well worth it:…

  8. Automating the analytical laboratory via the Chemical Analysis Automation paradigm

    SciTech Connect

    Hollen, R.; Rzeszutko, C.

    1997-10-01

    To address the need for standardization within the analytical chemistry laboratories of the nation, the Chemical Analysis Automation (CAA) program within the US Department of Energy, Office of Science and Technology`s Robotic Technology Development Program is developing laboratory sample analysis systems that will automate the environmental chemical laboratories. The current laboratory automation paradigm consists of islands-of-automation that do not integrate into a system architecture. Thus, today the chemist must perform most aspects of environmental analysis manually using instrumentation that generally cannot communicate with other devices in the laboratory. CAA is working towards a standardized and modular approach to laboratory automation based upon the Standard Analysis Method (SAM) architecture. Each SAM system automates a complete chemical method. The building block of a SAM is known as the Standard Laboratory Module (SLM). The SLM, either hardware or software, automates a subprotocol of an analysis method and can operate as a standalone or as a unit within a SAM. The CAA concept allows the chemist to easily assemble an automated analysis system, from sample extraction through data interpretation, using standardized SLMs without the worry of hardware or software incompatibility or the necessity of generating complicated control programs. A Task Sequence Controller (TSC) software program schedules and monitors the individual tasks to be performed by each SLM configured within a SAM. The chemist interfaces with the operation of the TSC through the Human Computer Interface (HCI), a logical, icon-driven graphical user interface. The CAA paradigm has successfully been applied in automating EPA SW-846 Methods 3541/3620/8081 for the analysis of PCBs in a soil matrix utilizing commercially available equipment in tandem with SLMs constructed by CAA.

  9. Automated Microbial Metabolism Laboratory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1973-01-01

    Development of the automated microbial metabolism laboratory (AMML) concept is reported. The focus of effort of AMML was on the advanced labeled release experiment. Labeled substrates, inhibitors, and temperatures were investigated to establish a comparative biochemical profile. Profiles at three time intervals on soil and pure cultures of bacteria isolated from soil were prepared to establish a complete library. The development of a strategy for the return of a soil sample from Mars is also reported.

  10. Implementation of a microwave-assisted tissue-processing system and an automated embedding system for breast needle core biopsy samples: morphology, immunohistochemistry, and FISH evaluation.

    PubMed

    Pegolo, Enrico; Pandolfi, Maura; Di Loreto, Carla

    2013-07-01

    A platform composed of a microwave (MW)-assisted tissue-processing system and an automated embedding system has been recently introduced in pathology laboratories. Needle core biopsy (NCB) is an established, highly accurate method for diagnosing breast lesions and for providing important pathologic, predictive, and prognostic information such as biomarker expression in case of breast carcinoma. The aim of this study was to evaluate whether breast NCBs processed with the MW-assisted tissue-processing system and automatically embedded show good-quality histology preparations and whether they are suitable for the assessment of estrogen receptor (ER), progesterone receptor (PR), Ki-67, and HER2 in breast carcinoma. A series of 233 consecutive breast NCBs processed by both conventional and MW-assisted tissue-processing systems was included in this study. The histomorphologic and immunohistochemical quality, as well as the results of the evaluation of the biomarkers, were compared-the conventional processing method being the gold standard for comparison. The quality of hematoxylin-eosin and immunohistochemical tissue sections provided by the new system is comparable to that obtained after the conventional processing method. Moreover, in breast carcinomas, a perfect agreement between the paired tissues when evaluating ER and PR status (Cohen κ = 1) and a very good agreement when evaluating Ki-67 (κ = 0.91) and HER2 (κ = 0.93) have been found. In conclusion, applying strict criteria in tissue-handling steps, breast NCB can be processed and automatically embedded with these platforms. The diagnosability and the evaluation of the main prognostic and predictive biomarkers have been proved to be reliable.

  11. Application of plume analysis to build land use regression models from mobile sampling to improve model transferability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tan, Yi; Dallmann, Timothy R.; Robinson, Allen L.; Presto, Albert A.

    2016-06-01

    Mobile monitoring of traffic-related air pollutants was conducted in Pittsburgh, PA. The data show substantial spatial variability of particle-bound polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PB-PAH) and black carbon (BC). This variability is driven in large part by pollutant plumes from high emitting vehicles (HEVs). These plumes contribute a disproportionately large fraction of the near-road exposures of PB-PAH and BC. We developed novel statistical models to describe the spatial patterns of PB-PAH and BC exposures. The models consist of two layers: a plume layer to describe the contributions of high emitting vehicles using a near-roadway kernel, and an urban-background layer that predicts the spatial pattern of other sources using land use regression. This approach leverages unique information content of highly time resolved mobile monitoring data and provides insight into source contributions. The two-layer model describes 76% of observed PB-PAH variation and 61% of BC variation. On average, HEVs contribute at least 32% of outdoor PB-PAH and 14% of BC. The transferability of the models was examined using measurements from 36 hold-out validation sites. The plume layer performed well at validation sites, but the background layer showed little transferability due to the large difference in land use between the city and outer suburbs.

  12. Comparison of paired serum and lithium heparin plasma samples for the measurement of serum amyloid A in horses using an automated turbidimetric immunoassay.

    PubMed

    Howard, Judith; Graubner, Claudia

    2014-03-01

    This study aimed to evaluate whether equine serum amyloid A (SAA) concentrations could be reliably measured in plasma with a turbidimetric immunoassay previously validated for equine SAA concentrations in serum. Paired serum and lithium-heparin samples obtained from 40 horses were evaluated. No difference was found in SAA concentrations between serum and plasma using a paired t test (P=0.48). The correlation between paired samples was 0.97 (Spearman's rank P<0.0001; 95% confidence interval 0.95-0.99). Passing-Bablok regression analyses revealed no differences between paired samples. Bland-Altman plots revealed a positive bias in plasma compared to serum but the difference was not considered clinically significant. The results indicate that lithium-heparin plasma samples are suitable for measurement of equine SAA using this method. Use of either serum or plasma allows for greater flexibility when it comes to sample collection although care should be taken when comparing data between measurements from different sample types.

  13. Improvement in the detection of enteric protozoa from clinical stool samples using the automated urine sediment analyzer sediMAX(®) 2 compared to sediMAX(®) 1.

    PubMed

    Intra, J; Sala, M R; Falbo, R; Cappellini, F; Brambilla, P

    2017-01-01

    Detection of intestinal parasites from fecal samples is routinely performed by direct wet mount examination. This method requires skilled personnel, and it is time consuming. The aim of this work is to demonstrate the usefulness of the newer automated urinary sediment analyser sediMAX 2 for a fast detection of intestinal protozoa in stool samples. A total of 700 consecutively preserved samples consisting of 70 positives and 630 negatives were analyzed. SediMAX 2 takes digital images of each sediment sample, and analysis was conducted using a dilution of stool specimens, allowing determination of typical morphology. Compared to manual microscopy, sediMAX 2 showed sensitivity and specificity of 100 % in the detection of intestinal parasites, as also recently demonstrated for sediMAX 1. However, all clinically important human protozoa were detected using only 15 images for each specimen, compared to 30 images required in sediMAX 1 analysis. Moreover, changing manually the focus, it is possible to carry out a discrimination between morphologically identical Entamoeba complex members, including the pathogenic E. histolytica and the non-pathogenic E. dispar, E. moshkovskii and E. Bangladeshi, from the non-pathogenic Entamoeba coli based on the number of nuclei present in the cells. This study presents sediMAX 2 as an automatic aid to traditional microscopy.

  14. Automated macromolecular crystallization screening

    DOEpatents

    Segelke, Brent W.; Rupp, Bernhard; Krupka, Heike I.

    2005-03-01

    An automated macromolecular crystallization screening system wherein a multiplicity of reagent mixes are produced. A multiplicity of analysis plates is produced utilizing the reagent mixes combined with a sample. The analysis plates are incubated to promote growth of crystals. Images of the crystals are made. The images are analyzed with regard to suitability of the crystals for analysis by x-ray crystallography. A design of reagent mixes is produced based upon the expected suitability of the crystals for analysis by x-ray crystallography. A second multiplicity of mixes of the reagent components is produced utilizing the design and a second multiplicity of reagent mixes is used for a second round of automated macromolecular crystallization screening. In one embodiment the multiplicity of reagent mixes are produced by a random selection of reagent components.

  15. Nonlinear calibration transfer based on hierarchical Bayesian models and Lagrange Multipliers: Error bounds of estimates via Monte Carlo - Markov Chain sampling.

    PubMed

    Seichter, Felicia; Vogt, Josef; Radermacher, Peter; Mizaikoff, Boris

    2017-01-25

    The calibration of analytical systems is time-consuming and the effort for daily calibration routines should therefore be minimized, while maintaining the analytical accuracy and precision. The 'calibration transfer' approach proposes to combine calibration data already recorded with actual calibrations measurements. However, this strategy was developed for the multivariate, linear analysis of spectroscopic data, and thus, cannot be applied to sensors with a single response channel and/or a non-linear relationship between signal and desired analytical concentration. To fill this gap for a non-linear calibration equation, we assume that the coefficients for the equation, collected over several calibration runs, are normally distributed. Considering that coefficients of an actual calibration are a sample of this distribution, only a few standards are needed for a complete calibration data set. The resulting calibration transfer approach is demonstrated for a fluorescence oxygen sensor and implemented as a hierarchical Bayesian model, combined with a Lagrange Multipliers technique and Monte-Carlo Markov-Chain sampling. The latter provides realistic estimates for coefficients and prediction together with accurate error bounds by simulating known measurement errors and system fluctuations. Performance criteria for validation and optimal selection of a reduced set of calibration samples were developed and lead to a setup which maintains the analytical performance of a full calibration. Strategies for a rapid determination of problems occurring in a daily calibration routine, are proposed, thereby opening the possibility of correcting the problem just in time.

  16. Automated Desalting Apparatus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Spencer, Maegan K.; Liu, De-Ling; Kanik, Isik; Beegle, Luther

    2010-01-01

    Because salt and metals can mask the signature of a variety of organic molecules (like amino acids) in any given sample, an automated system to purify complex field samples has been created for the analytical techniques of electrospray ionization/ mass spectroscopy (ESI/MS), capillary electrophoresis (CE), and biological assays where unique identification requires at least some processing of complex samples. This development allows for automated sample preparation in the laboratory and analysis of complex samples in the field with multiple types of analytical instruments. Rather than using tedious, exacting protocols for desalting samples by hand, this innovation, called the Automated Sample Processing System (ASPS), takes analytes that have been extracted through high-temperature solvent extraction and introduces them into the desalting column. After 20 minutes, the eluent is produced. This clear liquid can then be directly analyzed by the techniques listed above. The current apparatus including the computer and power supplies is sturdy, has an approximate mass of 10 kg, and a volume of about 20 20 20 cm, and is undergoing further miniaturization. This system currently targets amino acids. For these molecules, a slurry of 1 g cation exchange resin in deionized water is packed into a column of the apparatus. Initial generation of the resin is done by flowing sequentially 2.3 bed volumes of 2N NaOH and 2N HCl (1 mL each) to rinse the resin, followed by .5 mL of deionized water. This makes the pH of the resin near neutral, and eliminates cross sample contamination. Afterward, 2.3 mL of extracted sample is then loaded into the column onto the top of the resin bed. Because the column is packed tightly, the sample can be applied without disturbing the resin bed. This is a vital step needed to ensure that the analytes adhere to the resin. After the sample is drained, oxalic acid (1 mL, pH 1.6-1.8, adjusted with NH4OH) is pumped into the column. Oxalic acid works as a

  17. Pesticide Multiresidue Analysis in Cereal Grains Using Modified QuEChERS Method Combined with Automated Direct Sample Introduction GC-TOFMS and UPLC-MS/MS Techniques

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The QuEChERS (quick, easy, cheap, effective, rugged, and safe) sample preparation method was modified to accommodate various cereal grain matrices (corn, oat, rice and wheat) and provide good analytical results (recoveries in the range of 70-120% and RSDs <20%) for the majority of the target pestici...

  18. ACCELERATED SOLVENT EXTRACTION COMBINED WITH AUTOMATED SOLID PHASE EXTRACTION-GC/MS FOR ANALYSIS OF SEMIVOLATILE COMPOUNDS IN HIGH MOISTURE CONTENT SOLID SAMPLES

    EPA Science Inventory

    A research project was initiated to address a recurring problem of elevated detection limits above required risk-based concentrations for the determination of semivolatile organic compounds in high moisture content solid samples. This project was initiated, in cooperation with t...

  19. Comparison of turbulent-flow chromatography with automated solid-phase extraction in 96-well plates and liquid-liquid extraction used as plasma sample preparation techniques for liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Zimmer, D; Pickard, V; Czembor, W; Müller, C

    1999-08-27

    Turbulent flow chromatography (TFC) combined with the high selectivity and sensitivity of tandem mass spectrometry (MS-MS) is a new technique for the fast direct analysis of drugs from crude plasma. TFC in the 96-well plate format reduces significantly the time required for sample clean-up in the laboratory. For example, for 100 samples the workload for a technician is reduced from about 8 h by a manual liquid-liquid extraction (LLE) assay to about 1 h in the case of TFC. Sample clean-up and analysis are performed on-line on the same column. Similar chromatographic performance and validation results were achieved using HTLC Turbo-C18 columns (Cohesive Technologies) and Oasis HLB extraction columns (Waters). One 96-well plate with 96 plasma samples is analyzed within 5.25 h, corresponding to 3.3 min per sample. Compared to this LLE and analysis of 96 samples takes about 16 h. Two structurally different and highly protein bound compounds, drug A and drug B, were analyzed under identical TFC conditions and the assays were fully validated for the application to toxicokinetics studies (compliant with Good Laboratory Practices-GLP). The limit of quantitation was 1.00 microg/l and the linear working range covered three orders of magnitude for both drugs. In the case of drug A the quality of analysis by TFC was similar to the reference LLE assay and slightly better than automated solid-phase extraction in 96-well plates. The accuracy was -3.1 to 6.7% and the precision was 3.1 to 6.8% in the case of drug A determined for dog plasma by TFC-MS-MS. For drug B the accuracy was -3.7 to 3.5% and the precision was 1.6 to 5.4% for rat plasma, which is even slightly better than what was achieved with the validated protein precipitation assay.

  20. US Environmental Protection Agency Method 314.1, an automated sample preconcentration/matrix elimination suppressed conductivity method for the analysis of trace levels (0.50 microg/L) of perchlorate in drinking water.

    PubMed

    Wagner, Herbert P; Pepich, B V; Pohl, C; Later, D; Joyce, R; Srinivasan, K; Thomas, D; Woodruff, A; Deborba, B; Munch, D J

    2006-06-16

    Since 1997 there has been increasing interest in the development of analytical methods for the analysis of perchlorate. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Method 314.0, which was used during the first Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Regulation (UCMR) cycle, supports a method reporting limit (MRL) of 4.0 microg/L. The non-selective nature of conductivity detection, combined with very high ionic strength matrices, can create conditions that make the determination of perchlorate difficult. The objective of this work was to develop an automated, suppressed conductivity method with improved sensitivity for use in the second UCMR cycle. The new method, EPA Method 314.1, uses a 35 mm x 4 mm cryptand concentrator column in the sample loop position to concentrate perchlorate from a 2 mL sample volume, which is subsequently rinsed with 10 mM NaOH to remove interfering anions. The cryptand concentrator column is combined with a primary AS16 analytical column and a confirmation AS20 analytical column. Unique characteristics of the cryptand column allow perchlorate to be desorbed from the cryptand trap and refocused on the head of the guard column for subsequent separation and analysis. EPA Method 314.1 has a perchlorate lowest concentration minimum reporting level (LCMRL) of 0.13 microg/L in both drinking water and laboratory synthetic sample matrices (LSSM) containing up to 1,000 microg/L each of chloride, bicarbonate and sulfate.

  1. The WAIS Melt Monitor: An automated ice core melting system for meltwater sample handling and the collection of high resolution microparticle size distribution data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Breton, D. J.; Koffman, B. G.; Kreutz, K. J.; Hamilton, G. S.

    2010-12-01

    Paleoclimate data are often extracted from ice cores by careful geochemical analysis of meltwater samples. The analysis of the microparticles found in ice cores can also yield unique clues about atmospheric dust loading and transport, dust provenance and past environmental conditions. Determination of microparticle concentration, size distribution and chemical makeup as a function of depth is especially difficult because the particle size measurement either consumes or contaminates the meltwater, preventing further geochemical analysis. Here we describe a microcontroller-based ice core melting system which allows the collection of separate microparticle and chemistry samples from the same depth intervals in the ice core, while logging and accurately depth-tagging real-time electrical conductivity and particle size distribution data. This system was designed specifically to support microparticle analysis of the WAIS Divide WDC06A deep ice core, but many of the subsystems are applicable to more general ice core melting operations. Major system components include: a rotary encoder to measure ice core melt displacement with 0.1 millimeter accuracy, a meltwater tracking system to assign core depths to conductivity, particle and sample vial data, an optical debubbler level control system to protect the Abakus laser particle counter from damage due to air bubbles, a Rabbit 3700 microcontroller which communicates with a host PC, collects encoder and optical sensor data and autonomously operates Gilson peristaltic pumps and fraction collectors to provide automatic sample handling, melt monitor control software operating on a standard PC allowing the user to control and view the status of the system, data logging software operating on the same PC to collect data from the melting, electrical conductivity and microparticle measurement systems. Because microparticle samples can easily be contaminated, we use optical air bubble sensors and high resolution ice core density

  2. Bipartite recognition and conformational sampling mechanisms for hydride transfer from nicotinamide coenzyme to FMN in pentaerythritol tetranitrate reductase.

    PubMed

    Pudney, Christopher R; Hay, Sam; Scrutton, Nigel S

    2009-09-01

    Elucidating the origin of substrate and coenzyme specificity has been the focus of much work relating to enzyme engineering. Many enzymes exhibit tight specificity for particular substrates despite a close structural relationship to other nonreactive compounds. This tight specificity is especially remarkable and important biologically for the coenzymes NADH and NADPH. In the present study, we examined the preference of pentaerythritol tetranitrate reductase, an 'old yellow enzyme' family member, for the coenzymes NADPH over NADH. Using structural and mutagenesis studies, we have previously established that the coenzyme nicotinamide group is the key binding determinant in old yellow enzymes [Khan H et al. (2005) FEBS J 272, 4660-4671]. We have now performed detailed transient-state studies using NAD(P)H and the nonreactive analogues 1,4,5,6-tetrahydroNAD(P)H [NAD(P)H4], leading us to uncover an additional binding step in the reductive half-reaction of pentaerythritol tetranitrate reductase. We suggest that this initial binding step may primarily reflect binding of the adenine ribophosphate portion of the coenzyme, and that the second step reflects a rearrangement of the nicotinamide. Bipartite recognition, in which the adenine ribophosphate moiety localizes the coenzyme in the active site region, enables subsequent and localized searches of configurational space by the nicotinamide moiety to form the catalytically relevant charge-transfer complex. We suggest that this localized search contributes to catalytic efficiency via the principle of 'reduction in dimensionality'.

  3. Internal validation of the GlobalFiler™ Express PCR Amplification Kit for the direct amplification of reference DNA samples on a high-throughput automated workflow.

    PubMed

    Flores, Shahida; Sun, Jie; King, Jonathan; Budowle, Bruce

    2014-05-01

    The GlobalFiler™ Express PCR Amplification Kit uses 6-dye fluorescent chemistry to enable multiplexing of 21 autosomal STRs, 1 Y-STR, 1 Y-indel and the sex-determining marker amelogenin. The kit is specifically designed for processing reference DNA samples in a high throughput manner. Validation studies were conducted to assess the performance and define the limitations of this direct amplification kit for typing blood and buccal reference DNA samples on various punchable collection media. Studies included thermal cycling sensitivity, reproducibility, precision, sensitivity of detection, minimum detection threshold, system contamination, stochastic threshold and concordance. Results showed that optimal amplification and injection parameters for a 1.2mm punch from blood and buccal samples were 27 and 28 cycles, respectively, combined with a 12s injection on an ABI 3500xL Genetic Analyzer. Minimum detection thresholds were set at 100 and 120RFUs for 27 and 28 cycles, respectively, and it was suggested that data from positive amplification controls provided a better threshold representation. Stochastic thresholds were set at 250 and 400RFUs for 27 and 28 cycles, respectively, as stochastic effects increased with cycle number. The minimum amount of input DNA resulting in a full profile was 0.5ng, however, the optimum range determined was 2.5-10ng. Profile quality from the GlobalFiler™ Express Kit and the previously validated AmpFlSTR(®) Identifiler(®) Direct Kit was comparable. The validation data support that reliable DNA typing results from reference DNA samples can be obtained using the GlobalFiler™ Express PCR Amplification Kit.

  4. Automation in biological crystallization.

    PubMed

    Stewart, Patrick Shaw; Mueller-Dieckmann, Jochen

    2014-06-01

    Crystallization remains the bottleneck in the crystallographic process leading from a gene to a three-dimensional model of the encoded protein or RNA. Automation of the individual steps of a crystallization experiment, from the preparation of crystallization cocktails for initial or optimization screens to the imaging of the experiments, has been the response to address this issue. Today, large high-throughput crystallization facilities, many of them open to the general user community, are capable of setting up thousands of crystallization trials per day. It is thus possible to test multiple constructs of each target for their ability to form crystals on a production-line basis. This has improved success rates and made crystallization much more convenient. High-throughput crystallization, however, cannot relieve users of the task of producing samples of high quality. Moreover, the time gained from eliminating manual preparations must now be invested in the careful evaluation of the increased number of experiments. The latter requires a sophisticated data and laboratory information-management system. A review of the current state of automation at the individual steps of crystallization with specific attention to the automation of optimization is given.

  5. Automation in biological crystallization

    PubMed Central

    Shaw Stewart, Patrick; Mueller-Dieckmann, Jochen

    2014-01-01

    Crystallization remains the bottleneck in the crystallographic process leading from a gene to a three-dimensional model of the encoded protein or RNA. Automation of the individual steps of a crystallization experiment, from the preparation of crystallization cocktails for initial or optimization screens to the imaging of the experiments, has been the response to address this issue. Today, large high-throughput crystallization facilities, many of them open to the general user community, are capable of setting up thousands of crystallization trials per day. It is thus possible to test multiple constructs of each target for their ability to form crystals on a production-line basis. This has improved success rates and made crystallization much more convenient. High-throughput crystallization, however, cannot relieve users of the task of producing samples of high quality. Moreover, the time gained from eliminating manual preparations must now be invested in the careful evaluation of the increased number of experiments. The latter requires a sophisticated data and laboratory information-management system. A review of the current state of automation at the individual steps of crystallization with specific attention to the automation of optimization is given. PMID:24915074

  6. Transfer factors and effective half-lives of (134)Cs and (137)Cs in different environmental sample types obtained from Northern Finland: case Fukushima accident.

    PubMed

    Koivurova, Matias; Leppänen, Ari-Pekka; Kallio, Antti

    2015-08-01

    The Fukushima NPP accident caused a small but detectable cesium fallout in northern Finland, of the order of 1 Bq/m(2). This fallout transferred further to soil, water, flora and fauna. By using modern HPGe detector systems traces of (134)Cs from the Fukushima fallout were observed in various samples of biota. In northern Finland different types of environmental samples such as reindeer meat, berries, fish, lichens and wolf were collected during 2011-2013. The observed (134)Cs concentrations varied from 0.1 Bq/kg to a few Bq/kg. By using the known (134)Cs/(137)Cs ratio observed in Fukushima fallout the increase of the Fukushima accident to the (137)Cs concentrations was found to vary from 0.06 % to 6.9 % depending on the sample type. The aggregated transfer factors (Tag) and effective half-lives (Teff) for (134)Cs and (137)Cs were also determined and then compared with known values found from earlier studies which are calculated based on the fallout from the Chernobyl accident. Generally, the Tag and Teff values determined in this study were found to agree with the values found in the earlier studies. The Teff values were sample-type specific and were found to vary from 0.91 to 2.1 years for (134)Cs and the estimates for (137)Cs ranged between 1.6 and 19 years. Interestingly, the ground lichens had the longest Teff whereas the beard lichen had the shortest. In fauna, highest Tag values were determined for wolf meat ranging between 1.0 and 2.2 m(2)/kg. In flora, the highest Tag values were determined for beard lichens, ranging from 1.9 m(2)/kg to 3.5 m(2)/kg.

  7. Statistical and Economical Efficiency in Assessment of Liver Regeneration Using Defined Sample Size and Selection in Combination With a Fully Automated Image Analysis System

    PubMed Central

    Deng, Meihong; Kleinert, Robert; Huang, Hai; He, Qing; Madrahimova, Fotima; Dirsch, Olaf; Dahmen, Uta

    2009-01-01

    Quantification of liver regeneration is frequently based on determining the 5-bromo-2-deoxyuridine labeling index (BrdU-LI). The quantitative result is influenced by preanalytical, analytical, and postanalytical variables such as the region of interest (ROI). We aimed to present our newly developed and validated automatic computer-based image analysis system (AnalySIS-Macro), and to standardize the selection and sample size of ROIs. Images from BrdU-labeled and immunohistochemically stained liver sections were analyzed conventionally and with the newly developed AnalySIS-Macro and used for validation of the system. Automatic quantification correlated well with the manual counting result (r=0.9976). Validation of our AnalySIS-Macro revealed its high sensitivity (>90%) and specificity. The BrdU-LI ranged from 11% to 57% within the same liver (32.96 ± 11.94%), reflecting the highly variable spatial distribution of hepatocyte proliferation. At least 2000 hepatocytes (10 images at 200× magnification) per lobe were required as sample size for achieving a representative BrdU-LI. Furthermore, the number of pericentral areas should be equal to that of periportal areas. The combination of our AnalySIS-Macro with rules for the selection and size of ROIs represents an accurate, sensitive, specific, and efficient diagnostic tool for the determination of the BrdU-LI and the spatial distribution of proliferating hepatocytes. (J Histochem Cytochem 57:1075–1085, 2009) PMID:19620322

  8. Automated dynamic hollow fiber liquid-liquid-liquid microextraction combined with capillary electrophoresis for speciation of mercury in biological and environmental samples.

    PubMed

    Li, Pingjing; He, Man; Chen, Beibei; Hu, Bin

    2015-10-09

    A simple home-made automatic dynamic hollow fiber based liquid-liquid-liquid microextraction (AD-HF-LLLME) device was designed and constructed for the simultaneous extraction of organomercury and inorganic mercury species with the assistant of a programmable flow injection analyzer. With 18-crown-6 as the complexing reagent, mercury species including methyl-, ethyl-, phenyl- and inorganic mercury were extracted into the organic phase (chlorobenzene), and then back-extracted into the acceptor phase of 0.1% (m/v) 3-mercapto-1-propanesulfonic acid (MPS) aqueous solution. Compared with automatic static (AS)-HF-LLLME system, the extraction equilibrium of target mercury species was obtained in shorter time with higher extraction efficiency in AD-HF-LLLME system. Based on it, a new method of AD-HF-LLLME coupled with large volume sample stacking (LVSS)-capillary electrophoresis (CE)/UV detection was developed for the simultaneous analysis of methyl-, phenyl- and inorganic mercury species in biological samples and environmental water. Under the optimized conditions, AD-HF-LLLME provided high enrichment factors (EFs) of 149-253-fold within relatively short extraction equilibrium time (25min) and good precision with RSD between 3.8 and 8.1%. By combining AD-HF-LLLME with LVSS-CE/UV, EFs were magnified up to 2195-fold and the limits of detection (at S/N=3) for target mercury species were improved to be sub ppb level.

  9. Revisiting mobilisation of skeletal lead during pregnancy based on monthly sampling and cord/maternal blood lead relationships confirm placental transfer of lead.

    PubMed

    Gulson, Brian; Mizon, Karen; Korsch, Michael; Taylor, Alan

    2016-04-01

    Lead (Pb) can be released from the maternal skeleton during pregnancy and lactation and transferred to the infant. Most support for this hypothesis comes from blood Pb (PbB) studies involving limited sampling during pregnancy, the maximum usually being five samplings, including at delivery. We provide longitudinal data for PbB concentrations and Pb isotopic ratios for three cohorts of pregnant females (n = 31), two of which are based on monthly sampling and the other on quarterly sampling. We also provide data for samples collected post-partum. The data are compared with changes observed in a matched, by country and age, non-pregnant control cohort (n = 5). The monthly data illustrate the variability between subjects, which is also apparent when the data are compared on a trimester basis. Mixed model analyses showed that, in the third trimester, the mean PbB level was significantly lower for women (n = 10) who took a calcium (Ca) supplement (PbB 1.6 µg/dL) than those whose Ca intake was low (low-Ca cohort; n = 15; PbB 2.5 µg/dL) because low Ca means more mobilisation is required for homoeostasis so that more Pb was mobilised from the skeleton. For women who took the supplement, post-partum PbB levels were significantly higher than those in the other periods (2.7 vs 1.4-1.6 µg/dL). For women in the low-Ca cohort, PbB levels were higher at post-partum than in pre-pregnancy and in the first and second trimesters (3.1 vs 1.8 µg/dL), while the levels in the third trimester were higher than those in the first and second trimesters. Importantly, the increase in PbB during gestation was delayed until the third trimester in the Ca-supplemented cohort compared with the low-Ca cohort. Regression analysis showed that the changes over trimester were very similar for PbB and the (206)Pb/(204)Pb ratio providing convincing evidence for extra mobilisation of Pb from the maternal skeleton during pregnancy and lactation. Isotopic ratios in the cord blood samples were similar to

  10. Aviation Safety/Automation Program Conference

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morello, Samuel A. (Compiler)

    1990-01-01

    The Aviation Safety/Automation Program Conference - 1989 was sponsored by the NASA Langley Research Center on 11 to 12 October 1989. The conference, held at the Sheraton Beach Inn and Conference Center, Virginia Beach, Virginia, was chaired by Samuel A. Morello. The primary objective of the conference was to ensure effective communication and technology transfer by providing a forum for technical interchange of current operational problems and program results to date. The Aviation Safety/Automation Program has as its primary goal to improve the safety of the national airspace system through the development and integration of human-centered automation technologies for aircraft crews and air traffic controllers.

  11. Automated parking garage system model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Collins, E. R., Jr.

    1975-01-01

    A one-twenty-fifth scale model of the key components of an automated parking garage system is described. The design of the model required transferring a vehicle from an entry level, vertically (+Z, -Z), to a storage location at any one of four storage positions (+X, -X, +Y, +Y, -Y) on the storage levels. There are three primary subsystems: (1) a screw jack to provide the vertical motion of the elevator, (2) a cam-driven track-switching device to provide X to Y motion, and (3) a transfer cart to provide horizontal travel and a small amount to vertical motion for transfer to the storage location. Motive power is provided by dc permanent magnet gear motors, one each for the elevator and track switching device and two for the transfer cart drive system (one driving the cart horizontally and the other providing the vertical transfer). The control system, through the use of a microprocessor, provides complete automation through a feedback system which utilizes sensing devices.

  12. An Automated, Low Mass, Low Power Drill for Acquiring Subsurface Samples of Ground Ice for Astrobiology Studies on Earth and on Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Briggs, G. A.; McKay, C.; George, J.; Derkowski, G.; Cooper, G.; Zacny, K.; Baker, R. Fincher; Pollard, W.; Clifford, S.

    2003-01-01

    As a project that is part of NASA s Astrobiology Technology & Instrument Development Program (ASTID), we are developing a low mass (approx.20kg) drill that will be operated without drilling fluids and at very low power levels (approx.60 watts electrical) to access and retrieve samples from permafrost regions of Earth and Mars. The drill, designed and built as a joint effort by NASA JSC and Baker-Hughes International, takes the form of a down-hole unit attached to a cable so that it can, in principle, be scaled easily to reach significant depths. A parallel laboratory effort is being carried out at UC Berkeley to characterize the physics of dry drilling under martian conditions of pressure, temperature and atmospheric composition. Data from the UCB and JSC laboratory experiments are being used as input to a drill simulation program which is under development to provide autonomous control of the drill. The first Arctic field test of the unit is planned for May 2004. A field expedition to Eureka on Ellesmere Island in Spring 2003 provided an introduction for several team members to the practical aspects of drilling under Arctic conditions. The field effort was organized by Wayne Pollard of McGill University and Christopher McKay of NASA ARC. A conventional science drill provided by New Zealand colleagues was used to recover ground ice cores for analysis of their microbial content and also to develop techniques using tracers to track the depth of penetration of contamination from the core surface into the interior of the samples.

  13. Automated hollow-fiber liquid-phase microextraction followed by liquid chromatography with mass spectrometry for the determination of benzodiazepine drugs in biological samples.

    PubMed

    Nazaripour, Ali; Yamini, Yadollah; Ebrahimpour, Behnam; Fasihi, Javad

    2016-07-01

    In this study, two-phase hollow-fiber liquid-phase microextraction and three-phase hollow-fiber liquid-phase microextraction based on two immiscible organic solvents were compared for extraction of oxazepam and Lorazepam. Separations were performed on a liquid chromatography with mass spectrometry instrument. Under optimal conditions, three-phase hollow-fiber liquid-phase microextraction based on two immiscible organic solvents has a better extraction efficiency. In a urine sample, for three-phase hollow fiber liquid-phase microextraction based on two immiscible organic solvents, the calibration curves were found to be linear in the range of 0.6-200 and 0.9-200 μg L(-1) and the limits of detection were 0.2 and 0.3 μg L(-1) for oxazepam and lorazepam, respectively. For two-phase hollow fiber liquid-phase microextraction, the calibration curves were found to be linear in the range of 1-200 and 1.5-200 μg L(-1) and the limits of detection were 0.3 and 0.5 μg L(-1) for oxazepam and lorazepam, respectively. In a urine sample, for three-phase hollow-fiber-based liquid-phase microextraction based on two immiscible organic solvents, relative standard deviations in the range of 4.2-4.5% and preconcentration factors in the range of 70-180 were obtained for oxazepam and lorazepam, respectively. Also for the two-phase hollow-fiber liquid-phase microextraction, preconcentration factors in the range of 101-257 were obtained for oxazepam and lorazepam, respectively.

  14. Characteristics of the m2000 Automated Sample Preparation and Multiplex Real-Time PCR System for Detection of Chlamydia trachomatis and Neisseria gonorrhoeae▿

    PubMed Central

    Marshall, R.; Chernesky, M.; Jang, D.; Hook, E. W.; Cartwright, C. P.; Howell-Adams, B.; Ho, S.; Welk, J.; Lai-Zhang, J.; Brashear, J.; Diedrich, B.; Otis, K.; Webb, E.; Robinson, J.; Yu, H.

    2007-01-01

    We evaluated a new real-time PCR-based prototype assay for the detection of Chlamydia trachomatis and Neisseria gonorrhoeae developed by Abbott Molecular Inc. This assay is designed to be performed on an Abbott m2000 real-time instrument system, which consists of an m2000sp instrument for sample preparation and an m2000rt instrument for real-time PCR amplification and detection. The limit of detection of this prototype assay was determined to be 20 copies of target DNA for both C. trachomatis and N. gonorrhoeae, using serially diluted linearized plasmids. No cross-reactivity could be detected when 55 nongonococcal Neisseria isolates and 3 non-C. trachomatis Chlamydia isolates were tested at 1 million genome equivalents per reaction. Concordance with the Roche Amplicor, BDProbeTec ET, and Gen-Probe APTIMA Combo 2 tests was assessed using unlinked/deidentified surplus clinical specimens previously analyzed with these tests. For C. trachomatis, concordance for positive results ranged from 93.7% to 100%, while concordance for negative results ranged from 98.2% to 100%. For N. gonorrhoeae, concordance for positive and negative results ranged from 91.4% to 100% and 99.3% to 100%, respectively. A workflow analysis of the prototype assay was conducted to obtain information on throughput under laboratory conditions. At 48 samples/run, the time to first result for both C. trachomatis and N. gonorrhoeae was 4.5 h. A total of 135 patient specimens could be analyzed in 8.9 h, with 75 min of hands-on time. This study demonstrated the technical and clinical feasibility of the new Abbott real-time PCR C. trachomatis/N. gonorrhoeae assay. PMID:17202273

  15. Decoupling scattering and absorption of turbid samples using a simple empirical relation between coefficients of the Kubelka-Munk and radiative transfer theories.

    PubMed

    Gaonkar, Harshavardhan Ashok; Kumar, Dinesh; Ramasubramaniam, Rajagopal; Roy, Arindam

    2014-05-01

    Efforts are underway to better understand the absorption properties of micro- and nano-sized particles due to their potential in various photonic applications. However, most of these particles exhibit strong scattering in the spectral regions of interest in addition to absorption. Due to strong interference from scattering, the absorption of these turbid samples cannot be directly measured using conventional spectroscopy techniques. The optical properties of these particles are also different from that of the bulk due to quantum confinement and plasmon resonance effects and cannot be inferred from their bulk properties. By measuring the total transmittance and total reflectance (diffuse and collimated) of turbid samples and using an empirical relation between the coefficients of the Kubelka-Munk and radiative transfer theories, we have demonstrated a method to calculate the absorption and reduced scattering coefficients of turbid samples. This method is capable of extracting the absorption coefficient of turbid samples with an error of 2%. Using this method, we have decoupled the specific absorption and specific reduced scattering coefficients of commercially available micro-sized iron oxide particles. The current method can be used to measure the optical properties of irregularly shaped particle dispersions, which are otherwise difficult to estimate theoretically.

  16. Phase transfer membrane supported liquid-liquid-liquid microextraction combined with large volume sample injection capillary electrophoresis-ultraviolet detection for the speciation of inorganic and organic mercury.

    PubMed

    Li, Pingjing; Zhang, Xing; Hu, Bin

    2011-12-30

    In this paper, a novel sample pretreatment technique termed phase transfer based liquid-liquid-liquid microextraction (PT-LLLME) was proposed for the simultaneous extraction of inorganic and organic mercury species. In PT-LLLME, an intermediate solvent (acetonitrile) was added into the donor phase to improve the contacting between target mercury species and complexing reagent. Meanwhile, a membrane supported (MS)-LLLME unit was designed to realize the PT-LLLME procedure. By using nylon membrane as supporting carrier, larger than 50 μL of acceptor solution could be hung up. Following PT/MS-LLLME, the acceptor solutions were directly analyzed by large volume sample stacking capillary electrophoresis/ultraviolet detection (LVSS-CE/UV). Accordingly, a new method of PT/MS-LLLME combined with LVSS-CE/UV was developed for the simultaneous speciation of inorganic and organic mercury species. Parameters affecting the extraction efficiency of PT/MS-LLLME were investigated in details. Under the optimized conditions, enrichment factors (EFs) ranging from 160- to 478-fold were obtained for the extraction of target mercury species by PT/MS-LLLME. By combining PT/MS-LLLME with LVSS-CE/UV, EFs were magnified up to 12,138-fold and the limits of detection (at a signal-to-noise ratio of 3) were at sub ppb level. The established approach of PT/MS-LLLME-LVSS-CE/UV was successfully applied to simultaneous determination of inorganic and organic mercury species in biological samples and environmental water samples.

  17. Automating the multiprocessing environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Arpasi, Dale J.

    1989-01-01

    An approach to automate the programming and operation of tree-structured networks of multiprocessor systems is discussed. A conceptual, knowledge-based operating environment is presented, and requirements for two major technology elements are identified as follows: (1) An intelligent information translator is proposed for implementating information transfer between dissimilar hardware and software, thereby enabling independent and modular development of future systems and promoting a language-independence of codes and information; (2) A resident system activity manager, which recognizes the systems capabilities and monitors the status of all systems within the environment, is proposed for integrating dissimilar systems into effective parallel processing resources to optimally meet user needs. Finally, key computational capabilities which must be provided before the environment can be realized are identified.

  18. Automated attendance accounting system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chapman, C. P. (Inventor)

    1973-01-01

    An automated accounting system useful for applying data to a computer from any or all of a multiplicity of data terminals is disclosed. The system essentially includes a preselected number of data terminals which are each adapted to convert data words of decimal form to another form, i.e., binary, usable with the computer. Each data terminal may take the form of a keyboard unit having a number of depressable buttons or switches corresponding to selected data digits and/or function digits. A bank of data buffers, one of which is associated with each data terminal, is provided as a temporary storage. Data from the terminals is applied to the data buffers on a digit by digit basis for transfer via a multiplexer to the computer.

  19. A multiplex real-time PCR-platform integrated into automated extraction method for the rapid detection and measurement of oncogenic HPV type-specific viral DNA load from cervical samples.

    PubMed

    Broccolo, Francesco

    2014-01-01

    The persistent infection with most frequent high-risk (HR)-HPV types (HPV-16, -18, -31, -33, -45, -52, and -58) is considered to be the true precursor of neoplastic progression. HR-HPV detection and genotyping is the most effective and accurate approach in screening of the early cervical lesions and cervical cancer, although also the HR-HPV DNA load is considered an ancillary marker for persistent HPV infection. Here, it is described an in-house multiplex quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR)-based typing system for the rapid detection and quantitation of the most common HR-HPV genotypes from cervical cytology screening tests. First, a separate qPCR assay to quantify a single-copy gene is recommended prior to screening (prescreening assay) to verify the adequate cellularity of the sample and the quality of DNA extracted and to normalize the HPV copy number per genomic DNA equivalent in the sample. Subsequently, to minimize the number of reactions, two multiplex qPCR assays (first line screening) are performed to detect and quantify HPV-16, -18, -31, -33, -45, -52, and -58 (HPV-18 and -45 are measured together by single-fluorophore). In addition, a multiplex qPCR assay specific for HPV-18 and HPV-45 is also available to type precisely the samples found to be positive for one of the two strains. Finally, two nucleic acid extraction methods are proposed by using a 96-well plate format: one manual method (supported by centrifuge or by vacuum) and one automated method integrated into a robotic liquid handler workstation to minimize material and hands-on time. In conclusion, this system provides a reliable high-throughput method for the rapid detection and quantitation of HR-HPV DNA load in cervical samples.

  20. Implementation of a semi-automated strategy for the annotation of metabolomic fingerprints generated by liquid chromatography-high resolution mass spectrometry from biological samples.

    PubMed

    Courant, Frédérique; Royer, Anne-Lise; Chéreau, Sylvain; Morvan, Marie-Line; Monteau, Fabrice; Antignac, Jean-Philippe; Le Bizec, Bruno

    2012-11-07

    Metabolomics aims at detecting and semi-quantifying small molecular weight metabolites in biological samples in order to characterise the metabolic changes resulting from one or more given factors and/or to develop models based on diagnostic biomarker candidates. Nevertheless, whatever the objective of a metabolomic study, one critical step consists in the structural identification of mass spectrometric features revealed by statistical analysis and this remains a real challenge. Indeed, this requires both an understanding of the studied biological system, the correct use of various analytical information (retention time, molecular weight experimentally measured, isotopic golden rules, MS/MS fragment pattern interpretation…), or querying online databases. In gas chromatography-electro-ionisation (EI)-mass spectrometry, EI leads to a very reproducible fragmentation allowing establishment of universal EI mass spectra databases (for example, the NIST database -National Institute of Standards and Technology) and thus facilitates the identification step. Unfortunately, the situation is different when working with liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) since atmospheric pressure ionisation exhibits high inter-instrument variability regarding fragmentation. Therefore, the constitution of LC-MS "in-house" spectral databases appears relevant in this context. The present study describes the procedure developed and applied to increment 133 and 130 metabolites in databanks dedicated to analyses performed with LC-HRMS in positive and negative electrospray ionisation, and the use of these databanks for annotating quickly untargeted metabolomics fingerprints. This study also describes the optimization of the parameters controlling the automatic processing in order to obtain a fast and reliable annotation of a maximum of organic compounds. This strategy was applied to bovine kidney samples collected from control animals or animals treated with steroid hormones. Thirty

  1. Development of an automated sampling-analysis system for simultaneous measurement of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in gas and particle phases: GAC-ROS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Wei; Zhang, Yuanxun; Zhang, Yang; Zeng, Limin; Dong, Huabin; Huo, Peng; Fang, Dongqing; Schauer, James J.

    2016-06-01

    A novel online system, GAC-ROS, for simultaneous measurement of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in both gas and particle phases was developed based on 2‧,7‧-dichlorofluorescin (DCFH) assay to provide fast sampling and analysis of atmospheric ROS. The GAC-ROS, composed of a Gas and Aerosol Collector (GAC), a series of reaction and transportation systems, and a fluorescence detector, was tested for instrumental performance in laboratory. Results showed good performance with a favorable R2 value for the calibration curve (above 0.998), high penetration efficiencies of ROS (above 99.5%), and low detection limits (gas-phase ROS: 0.16 nmol H2O2 m-3; particle-phase ROS: 0.12 nmol H2O2 m-3). Laboratorial comparison between online and offline methods for particle-bound ROS showed significant loss of ROS due to the relatively long time off-line treatment. Field observations in Beijing found that concentrations of ROS in winter time were significantly higher than those observed in spring. Only a few weak positive correlations were found between ROS and some air pollutants, which reflects the complexities of ROS generation and transformation in atmosphere. This study was the first to simultaneously obtain concentrations of gas and particle-phase ROS using an online method. Consequently, it provides a powerful tool to characterize the oxidizing capacity of the atmosphere and the sources of the oxidizing capacity.

  2. Use of the BACTEC Mycobacteria Growth Indicator Tube 960 automated system for recovery of Mycobacteria from 9,558 extrapulmonary specimens, including urine samples.

    PubMed

    Hillemann, Doris; Richter, Elvira; Rüsch-Gerdes, Sabine

    2006-11-01

    The BACTEC Mycobacteria Growth Indicator Tube 960 (MGIT 960) system was applied for recovery of mycobacteria from extrapulmonary specimens and compared with solid media (Löwenstein-Jensen and Stonebrink). A total of 9,558 specimens were investigated, comprising 3,074 body fluids, 1,878 tissues, and 2,069 urine samples, from which the recovery of mycobacteria was not yet established for MGIT 960. In total, the MGIT 960 was able to detect 446 (90.3%) of the 494 isolates of Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex (MTBC) and 223 (86.0%) out of the 259 isolates of nontuberculous mycobacteria (NTM). In comparison to this, culture on solid medium revealed 358 (72.6%) MTBC isolates and 164 (66.8%) NTM isolates. While 136 (27.6%) of the MTBC isolates and 95 (19.2%) of the NTM isolates were recovered from the MGIT 960 only, 48 (9.7%) of the MTBC isolates and 36 (13.9%) NTM isolates grew only on solid media. Thus, the overall sensitivities for the recovery of mycobacteria from extrapulmonary specimens with MGIT 960 and solid media were 88.8% and 69.3%, respectively. However, the efficiency of the MGIT 960 system can be maximized with additional culture on solid media.

  3. An Automated, High-Throughput System for GISAXS and GIWAXS Measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schaible, Eric; Jimenez, Jessica; Lim, Eun Hee; Church, Matthew; Yee, Christina; Stewart, Polite; MacDowell, Alastair; Parkinson, Dula; Domning, Ed; Yang, Lee; Alvarez, Steven; Hexemer, Alexander

    2014-03-01

    Grazing incidence small-angle X-ray scattering (GISAXS) and grazing incidence wide-angle X-ray scattering (GIWAXS) are important techniques for characterizing thin films. In order to meet rapidly increasing demand, the SAXSWAXS beamline at the Advanced Light Source (beamline 7.3.3) is implementing a fully automated, high-throughput system to conduct SAXS, GISAXS and GIWAXS measurements. An automated robot arm will transfer samples from a holding tray to a measurement stage. Intelligent software will align each sample in turn, and measure each according to user-defined specifications. Users will be able to mail in trays of samples, and will be able to monitor and control their experiments remotely. Data will be pipelined to the NERSC supercomputing facility, and will be available to users via a web portal that facilitates highly parallelized analysis. Support provided by the Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis (JCAP).

  4. An Automated, High-Throughput System for GISAXS and GIWAXS measurements of thin films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schaible, Eric; Jimenez, Jessica; Church, Matthew; Lim, Eunhee; Stewart, Polite; Hexemer, Alexander

    Grazing incidence small-angle X-ray scattering (GISAXS) and grazing incidence wide-angle X-ray scattering (GIWAXS) are important techniques for characterizing thin films. In order to meet rapidly increasing demand, the SAXSWAXS beamline at the Advanced Light Source (beamline 7.3.3) has implemented a fully automated, high-throughput system to conduct SAXS, GISAXS and GIWAXS measurements. An automated robot arm transfers samples from a holding tray to a measurement stage. Intelligent software aligns each sample in turn, and measures each according to user-defined specifications. Users mail in trays of samples on individually barcoded pucks, and can download and view their data remotely. Data will be pipelined to the NERSC supercomputing facility, and will be available to users via a web portal that facilitates highly parallelized analysis. Support provided by the Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis (JCAP).

  5. Automated ac galvanomagnetic measurement system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Szofran, F. R.; Espy, P. N.

    1985-01-01

    An automated, ac galvanomagnetic measurement system is described. Hall or van der Pauw measurements in the temperature range 10-300 K can be made at a preselected magnetic field without operator attendance. Procedures to validate sample installation and correct operation of other system functions, such as magnetic field and thermometry, are included. Advantages of ac measurements are discussed.

  6. A Sample Handling System for Mars Sample Return - Design and Status

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allouis, E.; Renouf, I.; Deridder, M.; Vrancken, D.; Gelmi, R.; Re, E.

    2009-04-01

    A mission to return atmosphere and soil samples form the Mars is highly desired by planetary scientists from around the world and space agencies are starting preparation for the launch of a sample return mission in the 2020 timeframe. Such a mission would return approximately 500 grams of atmosphere, rock and soil samples to Earth by 2025. Development of a wide range of new technology will be critical to the successful implementation of such a challenging mission. Technical developments required to realise the mission include guided atmospheric entry, soft landing, sample handling robotics, biological sealing, Mars atmospheric ascent sample rendezvous & capture and Earth return. The European Space Agency has been performing system definition studies along with numerous technology development studies under the framework of the Aurora programme. Within the scope of these activities Astrium has been responsible for defining an overall sample handling architecture in collaboration with European partners (sample acquisition and sample capture, Galileo Avionica; sample containment and automated bio-sealing, Verhaert). Our work has focused on the definition and development of the robotic systems required to move the sample through the transfer chain. This paper presents the Astrium team's high level design for the surface transfer system and the orbiter transfer system. The surface transfer system is envisaged to use two robotic arms of different sizes to allow flexible operations and to enable sample transfer over relatively large distances (~2 to 3 metres): The first to deploy/retract the Drill Assembly used for sample collection, the second for the transfer of the Sample Container (the vessel containing all the collected samples) from the Drill Assembly to the Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV). The sample transfer actuator also features a complex end-effector for handling the Sample Container. The orbiter transfer system will transfer the Sample Container from the capture

  7. Detection of Ehrlichia canis in canine blood samples by real-time fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) PCR and melting curve analysis.

    PubMed

    Kongklieng, Amornmas; Thanchomnang, Tongjit; Intapan, Pewpan M; Boonmars, Thidarut; Janwan, Penchom; Sanpool, Oranuch; Lulitanond, Viraphong; Taweethavonsawat, Piyanan; Chungpivat, Sudchit; Morakote, Nimit; Maleewong, Wanchai

    2014-09-01

    Ehrlichia canis is a small pleomorphic gram-negative, coccoid, obligatory intracellular bacterium and the cause of canine monocytic ehrlichiosis. A real-time fluorescence resonance energy transfer polymerase chain reaction (real-time FRET PCR) coupled with melting curve analysis was established for detection of E. canis infection in canine blood samples. The VirB9 gene was amplified using one pair of primers and the melting curve analysis was generated by heating the hybridizing probes and amplified products. Eight E. canis-infected dog blood samples were initially identified using the Giemsa staining/microscopic method followed by conventional PCR (cPCR)/Sanger sequencing for confirmation. The sensitivity and specificity of the real-time FRET PCR detection were 87.5% and 100%, respectively and the limit of detection was 6.6 x 10(3) copies of positive E. canis control plasmids. The real-time FRET PCR with melting curve analysis reported here is better than microscopic visualization or cPCR because the method is not affected by the false bias inherent in the microscopic method. Furthermore, many samples can be processed rapidly at the same time. This convenient tool is beneficial as an alternative assay for the epidemiologic study of canine ehrlichiosis as well as for eradication of these organisms in prevention and control programs in endemic areas.

  8. Nuclear-labeling index analysis (NLIA), a software package used to perform accurate automation of cell nuclear-labeling index analysis on immunohistochemically stained rat liver samples.

    PubMed

    Xu, Y H; Sattler, G L; Edwards, H; Pitot, H C

    2000-08-01

    The nuclear labeling index (labeled nuclei/100 nuclei) and the apoptotic index (apoptotic cells/100 cells) are important parameters of cell growth and death. Automatic counting of labeled nuclei is desirable since manual counting is tedious, time-consuming, and with a greater potential for inaccuracies. A nuclear-labeling index analysis (NLIA) software package was developed in this laboratory to perform the counting process automatically and accurately. This software package consists of an application program NLIA and a set of macros for obtaining nuclear data that is used in Scion Image. It is designed to work cooperatively with Scion Image, Adobe Photoshop, and Microsoft Office. NLIA has two basic functions: building nuclear data files and analyzing nuclear data. A color image captured from an immunohistochemically stained or autoradiographic sample is loaded into NLIA. Nuclear data can be entered into the program manually, automatically, or in combination. In the manual data entering mode, NLIA acts as an object-counting tool, while in the automatic mode it acts as a data picker: picking up the data generated by Scion Image into memory. A method to enter nuclear data (both labeled nuclei and unlabeled nuclei) in the automatic mode is described. The color image is processed in Adobe Photoshop, where the interested color ranges are selected and separated. These are then analyzed in Scion Image with the help of the macros for obtaining nuclear data. Since the advanced particle analysis function is used, the counting process is automatic and rapid. Data from thousands of nuclei can be obtained within seconds. To ensure the accuracy of the analysis, a nuclear data checking and edit feature is employed in NLIA: results of computer-generated counting can be compared with the original color image by overlaying the plot of counting results onto the original color image. In this way any computer counting mistakes can be easily discovered and corrected by the operator

  9. Coring Sample Acquisition Tool

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Haddad, Nicolas E.; Murray, Saben D.; Walkemeyer, Phillip E.; Badescu, Mircea; Sherrit, Stewart; Bao, Xiaoqi; Kriechbaum, Kristopher L.; Richardson, Megan; Klein, Kerry J.

    2012-01-01

    A sample acquisition tool (SAT) has been developed that can be used autonomously to sample drill and capture rock cores. The tool is designed to accommodate core transfer using a sample tube to the IMSAH (integrated Mars sample acquisition and handling) SHEC (sample handling, encapsulation, and containerization) without ever touching the pristine core sample in the transfer process.

  10. Automated S/TEM metrology on advanced semiconductor gate structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Strauss, M.; Arjavac, J.; Horspool, D. N.; Nakahara, K.; Deeb, C.; Hobbs, C.

    2012-03-01

    Alternate techniques for obatining metrology data from advanced semiconductor device structures may be required. Automated STEM-based dimensional metrology (CD-STEM) was developed for complex 3D geometries in read/write head metrology in teh hard disk drive industry. It has been widely adopted, and is the process of record for metrology. Fully automated S/TEM metrology on advanced semiconductor gate structures is viable, with good repeatability and robustness. Consistent automated throughput of 10 samples per hour was achieved. Automated sample preparation was developed with sufficient throughput and quality to support the automated CD-STEM.

  11. Automated extraction of lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) and N-demethyl-LSD from blood, serum, plasma, and urine samples using the Zymark RapidTrace with LC/MS/MS confirmation.

    PubMed

    de Kanel, J; Vickery, W E; Waldner, B; Monahan, R M; Diamond, F X

    1998-05-01

    A forensic procedure for the quantitative confirmation of lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) and the qualitative confirmation of its metabolite, N-demethyl-LSD, in blood, serum, plasma, and urine samples is presented. The Zymark RapidTrace was used to perform fully automated solid-phase extractions of all specimen types. After extract evaporation, confirmations were performed using liquid chromatography (LC) followed by positive electrospray ionization (ESI+) mass spectrometry/mass spectrometry (MS/MS) without derivatization. Quantitation of LSD was accomplished using LSD-d3 as an internal standard. The limit of quantitation (LOQ) for LSD was 0.05 ng/mL. The limit of detection (LOD) for both LSD and N-demethyl-LSD was 0.025 ng/mL. The recovery of LSD was greater than 95% at levels of 0.1 ng/mL and 2.0 ng/mL. For LSD at 1.0 ng/mL, the within-run and between-run (different day) relative standard deviation (RSD) was 2.2% and 4.4%, respectively.

  12. An automated image analysis framework for segmentation and division plane detection of single live Staphylococcus aureus cells which can operate at millisecond sampling time scales using bespoke Slimfield microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wollman, Adam J. M.; Miller, Helen; Foster, Simon; Leake, Mark C.

    2016-10-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is an important pathogen, giving rise to antimicrobial resistance in cell strains such as Methicillin Resistant S. aureus (MRSA). Here we report an image analysis framework for automated detection and image segmentation of cells in S. aureus cell clusters, and explicit identification of their cell division planes. We use a new combination of several existing analytical tools of image analysis to detect cellular and subcellular morphological features relevant to cell division from millisecond time scale sampled images of live pathogens at a detection precision of single molecules. We demonstrate this approach using a fluorescent reporter GFP fused to the protein EzrA that localises to a mid-cell plane during division and is involved in regulation of cell size and division. This image analysis framework presents a valuable platform from which to study candidate new antimicrobials which target the cell division machinery, but may also have more general application in detecting morphologically complex structures of fluorescently labelled proteins present in clusters of other types of cells.

  13. Validation of high-throughput measurement system with microwave-assisted extraction, fully automated sample preparation device, and gas chromatography-electron capture detector for determination of polychlorinated biphenyls in whale blubber.

    PubMed

    Fujita, Hiroyuki; Honda, Katsuhisa; Hamada, Noriaki; Yasunaga, Genta; Fujise, Yoshihiro

    2009-02-01

    Validation of a high-throughput measurement system with microwave-assisted extraction (MAE), fully automated sample preparation device (SPD), and gas chromatography-electron capture detector (GC-ECD) for the determination of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in minke whale blubber was performed. PCB congeners accounting for > 95% of the total PCBs burden in blubber were efficiently extracted with a small volume (20 mL) of n-hexane using MAE due to simultaneous saponification and extraction. Further, the crude extract obtained by MAE was rapidly purified and automatically substituted to a small volume (1 mL) of toluene using SPD without using concentrators. Furthermore, the concentration of PCBs in the purified and concentrated solution was accurately determined by GC-ECD. Moreover, the result of accuracy test using a certified material (SRM 1588b; Cod liver oil) showed good agreement with the NIST certified concentration values. In addition, the method quantification limit of total-PCB in whale blubbers was 41 ng g(-1). This new measurement system for PCBs takes only four hours. Consequently, it indicated this method is the most suitable for the monitoring and screening of PCBs in the conservation of the marine ecosystem and safe distribution of foods.

  14. Autonomous Data Transfer Operations for Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Repaci, Max; Baker, Paul; Brosi, Fred

    2000-01-01

    Automating the data transfer operation can significantly reduce the cost of moving data from a spacecraft to a location on Earth. Automated data transfer methods have been developed for the terrestrial Internet. However, they often do not apply to the space environment, since in general they are based on assumptions about connectivity that are true on the Internet but not on space links. Automated file transfer protocols have been developed for use over space links that transfer data via store-and-forward of files or segments of files. This paper investigates some of the operational concepts made possible by these protocols.

  15. Water Sample Concentrator

    SciTech Connect

    Idaho National Laboratory

    2009-07-21

    Automated portable device that concentrates and packages a sample of suspected contaminated water for safe, efficient transport to a qualified analytical laboratory. This technology will help safeguard against pathogen contamination or chemical and biolog

  16. Water Sample Concentrator

    ScienceCinema

    Idaho National Laboratory

    2016-07-12

    Automated portable device that concentrates and packages a sample of suspected contaminated water for safe, efficient transport to a qualified analytical laboratory. This technology will help safeguard against pathogen contamination or chemical and biolog

  17. Specimen coordinate automated measuring machine/fiducial automated measuring machine

    SciTech Connect

    Hedglen, Robert E.; Jacket, Howard S.; Schwartz, Allan I.

    1991-01-01

    The Specimen coordinate Automated Measuring Machine (SCAMM) and the Fiducial Automated Measuring Machine (FAMM) is a computer controlled metrology system capable of measuring length, width, and thickness, and of locating fiducial marks. SCAMM and FAMM have many similarities in their designs, and they can be converted from one to the other without taking them out of the hot cell. Both have means for: supporting a plurality of samples and a standard; controlling the movement of the samples in the +/- X and Y directions; determining the coordinates of the sample; compensating for temperature effects; and verifying the accuracy of the measurements and repeating as necessary. SCAMM and FAMM are designed to be used in hot cells.

  18. 12 CFR 205.16 - Disclosures at automated teller machines.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 12 Banks and Banking 2 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Disclosures at automated teller machines. 205.16 Section 205.16 Banks and Banking FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM BOARD OF GOVERNORS OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM ELECTRONIC FUND TRANSFERS (REGULATION E) § 205.16 Disclosures at automated teller machines....

  19. 12 CFR 205.16 - Disclosures at automated teller machines.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 12 Banks and Banking 2 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Disclosures at automated teller machines. 205.16 Section 205.16 Banks and Banking FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM BOARD OF GOVERNORS OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM ELECTRONIC FUND TRANSFERS (REGULATION E) § 205.16 Disclosures at automated teller machines....

  20. 12 CFR 205.16 - Disclosures at automated teller machines.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 12 Banks and Banking 2 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Disclosures at automated teller machines. 205.16 Section 205.16 Banks and Banking FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM BOARD OF GOVERNORS OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM ELECTRONIC FUND TRANSFERS (REGULATION E) § 205.16 Disclosures at automated teller machines....

  1. 12 CFR 205.16 - Disclosures at automated teller machines.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 12 Banks and Banking 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Disclosures at automated teller machines. 205.16 Section 205.16 Banks and Banking FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM BOARD OF GOVERNORS OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM ELECTRONIC FUND TRANSFERS (REGULATION E) § 205.16 Disclosures at automated teller machines....

  2. 12 CFR 205.16 - Disclosures at automated teller machines.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 12 Banks and Banking 2 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Disclosures at automated teller machines. 205.16 Section 205.16 Banks and Banking FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM BOARD OF GOVERNORS OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM ELECTRONIC FUND TRANSFERS (REGULATION E) § 205.16 Disclosures at automated teller machines....

  3. The second to fourth digit ratio (2D:4D) in a Japanese twin sample: heritability, prenatal hormone transfer, and association with sexual orientation.

    PubMed

    Hiraishi, Kai; Sasaki, Shoko; Shikishima, Chizuru; Ando, Juko

    2012-06-01

    The second to fourth digit ratio has been argued to reflect prenatal hormonal influences and is reportedly associated with various psychological and behavioral traits, such as sexual orientation, cognitive abilities, and personality. We examined genetic and environmental influences on the second to fourth digit ratio (2D:4D) using a Japanese twin sample (N=300). The genetic analysis showed substantial additive genetic influences for both right and left hand 2D:4D. The rest of the variance was explained mainly by environmental influences not shared within twin pairs. These findings were, in general, in accordance with preceding studies with primarily Caucasian twin samples. The bivariate genetic analysis revealed that the additive genetic influences were largely shared between the right and left hand, while the non-shared environmental influences were largely unique to each hand. Results from a comparison of opposite-sex and same-sex twins were not significant, although they were in the predicted direction according to the prenatal hormone transfer hypothesis. Female monozygotic twin pairs discordant in sexual orientation showed significant within-pair differences in left hand 2D:4D, where non-heterosexual twins had lower (more masculinized) 2D:4D. In addition, we found that non-heterosexual male MZ twins had larger (more feminized) 2D:4D than their heterosexual co-twins. These results suggest the existence of non-shared environmental influences that affect both 2D:4D and sexual orientation.

  4. Easing the Transition: How to Implement an Automated Succession Plan.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Andrews, Jean P.

    1989-01-01

    An automated succession plan can create smooth transitions when employees transfer or leave the company. It can also boost productivity and employee morale. (Includes a basic nine-step implementation plan that makes the process easy and relatively painless.) (JOW)

  5. Dispersive liquid-liquid microextraction combined with semi-automated in-syringe back extraction as a new approach for the sample preparation of ionizable organic compounds prior to liquid chromatography.

    PubMed

    Melwanki, Mahaveer B; Fuh, Ming-Ren

    2008-07-11

    Dispersive liquid-liquid microextraction (DLLME) followed by a newly designed semi-automated in-syringe back extraction technique has been developed as an extraction methodology for the extraction of polar organic compounds prior to liquid chromatography (LC) measurement. The method is based on the formation of tiny droplets of the extractant in the sample solution using water-immiscible organic solvent (extractant) dissolved in a water-miscible organic dispersive solvent. Extraction of the analytes from aqueous sample into the dispersed organic droplets took place. The extracting organic phase was separated by centrifuging and the sedimented phase was withdrawn into a syringe. Then in-syringe back extraction was utilized to extract the analytes into an aqueous solution prior to LC analysis. Clenbuterol (CB), a basic organic compound used as a model, was extracted from a basified aqueous sample using 25 microL tetrachloroethylene (TCE, extraction solvent) dissolved in 500 microL acetone (as a dispersive solvent). After separation of the organic extracting phase by centrifuging, CB enriched in TCE phase was back extracted into 10 microL of 1% aqueous formic acid (FA) within the syringe. Back extraction was facilitated by repeatedly moving the plunger back and forth within the barrel of syringe, assisted by a syringe pump. Due to the plunger movement, a thin organic film is formed on the inner layer of the syringe that comes in contact with the acidic aqueous phase. Here, CB, a basic analyte, will be protonated and back extracted into FA. Various parameters affecting the extraction efficiency, viz., choice of extraction and dispersive solvent, salt effect, speed of syringe pump, back extraction time period, effect of concentration of base and acid, were evaluated. Under optimum conditions, precision, linearity (correlation coefficient, r(2)=0.9966 over the concentration range of 10-1000 ng mL(-1) CB), detection limit (4.9 ng mL(-1)), enrichment factor (175), relative

  6. Autonomy and Automation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shively, Jay

    2017-01-01

    A significant level of debate and confusion has surrounded the meaning of the terms autonomy and automation. Automation is a multi-dimensional concept, and we propose that Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) automation should be described with reference to the specific system and task that has been automated, the context in which the automation functions, and other relevant dimensions. In this paper, we present definitions of automation, pilot in the loop, pilot on the loop and pilot out of the loop. We further propose that in future, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) RPAS Panel avoids the use of the terms autonomy and autonomous when referring to automated systems on board RPA. Work Group 7 proposes to develop, in consultation with other workgroups, a taxonomy of Levels of Automation for RPAS.

  7. Automated determination of pesticide residues in olive oil by on-line reversed-phase liquid chromatography-gas chromatography using the through oven transfer adsorption desorption interface with electron-capture and nitrogen-phosphorus detectors operating simultaneously.

    PubMed

    Díaz-Plaza, Eva M; Cortés, Jose M; Vázquez, Ana; Villén, Jesús

    2007-12-07

    A rapid method for the multiresidue analysis of pesticides in olive oil is presented. Pesticides are analyzed by on-line coupling reversed-phase liquid chromatography-gas chromatography using the through oven transfer adsorption desorption (TOTAD) interface with subsequent simultaneous electron-capture and nitrogen-phosphorus detection by post-column splitter. An autosampler is employed and the olive oil is simply filtered before the chromatographic analysis. Organophosphorus, organochlorine and triazine pesticides are determined in one run. The limits of detection are below the required maximum residue levels and calibration curves are linear in the range tested. Repeatabilities (intra-day and inter-days) are good. The method was satisfactory applied to the routine analysis of numerous olive oil samples.

  8. Flow through electrode with automated calibration

    DOEpatents

    Szecsody, James E [Richland, WA; Williams, Mark D [Richland, WA; Vermeul, Vince R [Richland, WA

    2002-08-20

    The present invention is an improved automated flow through electrode liquid monitoring system. The automated system has a sample inlet to a sample pump, a sample outlet from the sample pump to at least one flow through electrode with a waste port. At least one computer controls the sample pump and records data from the at least one flow through electrode for a liquid sample. The improvement relies upon (a) at least one source of a calibration sample connected to (b) an injection valve connected to said sample outlet and connected to said source, said injection valve further connected to said at least one flow through electrode, wherein said injection valve is controlled by said computer to select between said liquid sample or said calibration sample. Advantages include improved accuracy because of more frequent calibrations, no additional labor for calibration, no need to remove the flow through electrode(s), and minimal interruption of sampling.

  9. Workflow automation architecture standard

    SciTech Connect

    Moshofsky, R.P.; Rohen, W.T.

    1994-11-14

    This document presents an architectural standard for application of workflow automation technology. The standard includes a functional architecture, process for developing an automated workflow system for a work group, functional and collateral specifications for workflow automation, and results of a proof of concept prototype.

  10. Improving Laboratory Efficiency by Automation of Preanalytic Processing of ThinPrep Specimens for Real-Time PCR High-Risk HPV Testing.

    PubMed

    Barbieri, Daniela; Venturoli, Simona; Costa, Silvano; Landini, Maria Paola

    2016-06-01

    Cervical specimens collected in liquid-based cytology (LBC) media are the most common sample type used for high-risk human papillomavirus (HPV) testing. Since preanalytic steps such as vortexing and decapping vials, liquid transfer to a sample input tube with matching unique identifier, and recapping the original vials are required for processing LBC samples prior to running the Abbott RealTime High Risk HPV assay (Abbott, Wiesbaden, Germany), a full manual execution can be complicated, especially in high-throughput diagnostic contexts. Here, a custom-configured worktable setup for the Tecan Freedom EVO (Tecan, Männedorf, Switzerland) designed to automate and control preanalytic steps for ThinPrep (Hologic, Marlborough, MA) samples was used to evaluate the impact of automated versus manual preanalytics. Archival results for manual processing of 226 samples were compared with those obtained with the Tecan protocol, observing a very good overall concordance for final assay interpretation (95.6%). High overall agreement (100%) resulted also from retesting 99 samples by both the preanalytical protocols. High reproducibility was observed analyzing 23 randomly selected samples by automated preprocessing in triplicate. Hence, the new configuration of the Tecan platform translates the manual steps required to process ThinPrep specimens into automated operations, controls sample identification, and allows for saving hands-on time, while maintaining assay reproducibility and ensuring reliability of results, making it suitable for screening settings.

  11. Automated Analysis Workstation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1997-01-01

    Information from NASA Tech Briefs of work done at Langley Research Center and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory assisted DiaSys Corporation in manufacturing their first product, the R/S 2000. Since then, the R/S 2000 and R/S 2003 have followed. Recently, DiaSys released their fourth workstation, the FE-2, which automates the process of making and manipulating wet-mount preparation of fecal concentrates. The time needed to read the sample is decreased, permitting technologists to rapidly spot parasites, ova and cysts, sometimes carried in the lower intestinal tract of humans and animals. Employing the FE-2 is non-invasive, can be performed on an out-patient basis, and quickly provides confirmatory results.

  12. Automation in Clinical Microbiology

    PubMed Central

    Ledeboer, Nathan A.

    2013-01-01

    Historically, the trend toward automation in clinical pathology laboratories has largely bypassed the clinical microbiology laboratory. In this article, we review the historical impediments to automation in the microbiology laboratory and offer insight into the reasons why we believe that we are on the cusp of a dramatic change that will sweep a wave of automation into clinical microbiology laboratories. We review the currently available specimen-processing instruments as well as the total laboratory automation solutions. Lastly, we outline the types of studies that will need to be performed to fully assess the benefits of automation in microbiology laboratories. PMID:23515547

  13. Shoe-String Automation

    SciTech Connect

    Duncan, M.L.

    2001-07-30

    Faced with a downsizing organization, serious budget reductions and retirement of key metrology personnel, maintaining capabilities to provide necessary services to our customers was becoming increasingly difficult. It appeared that the only solution was to automate some of our more personnel-intensive processes; however, it was crucial that the most personnel-intensive candidate process be automated, at the lowest price possible and with the lowest risk of failure. This discussion relates factors in the selection of the Standard Leak Calibration System for automation, the methods of automation used to provide the lowest-cost solution and the benefits realized as a result of the automation.

  14. Automated nutrient analyses in seawater

    SciTech Connect

    Whitledge, T.E.; Malloy, S.C.; Patton, C.J.; Wirick, C.D.

    1981-02-01

    This manual was assembled for use as a guide for analyzing the nutrient content of seawater samples collected in the marine coastal zone of the Northeast United States and the Bering Sea. Some modifications (changes in dilution or sample pump tube sizes) may be necessary to achieve optimum measurements in very pronounced oligotrophic, eutrophic or brackish areas. Information is presented under the following section headings: theory and mechanics of automated analysis; continuous flow system description; operation of autoanalyzer system; cookbook of current nutrient methods; automated analyzer and data analysis software; computer interfacing and hardware modifications; and trouble shooting. The three appendixes are entitled: references and additional reading; manifold components and chemicals; and software listings. (JGB)

  15. Development of automated high throughput single molecular microfluidic detection platform for signal transduction analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Po-Jung; Baghbani Kordmahale, Sina; Chou, Chao-Kai; Yamaguchi, Hirohito; Hung, Mien-Chie; Kameoka, Jun

    2016-03-01

    Signal transductions including multiple protein post-translational modifications (PTM), protein-protein interactions (PPI), and protein-nucleic acid interaction (PNI) play critical roles for cell proliferation and differentiation that are directly related to the cancer biology. Traditional methods, like mass spectrometry, immunoprecipitation, fluorescence resonance energy transfer, and fluorescence correlation spectroscopy require a large amount of sample and long processing time. "microchannel for multiple-parameter analysis of proteins in single-complex (mMAPS)"we proposed can reduce the process time and sample volume because this system is composed by microfluidic channels, fluorescence microscopy, and computerized data analysis. In this paper, we will present an automated mMAPS including integrated microfluidic device, automated stage and electrical relay for high-throughput clinical screening. Based on this result, we estimated that this automated detection system will be able to screen approximately 150 patient samples in a 24-hour period, providing a practical application to analyze tissue samples in a clinical setting.

  16. Universal microfluidic automaton for autonomous sample processing: application to the Mars Organic Analyzer.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jungkyu; Jensen, Erik C; Stockton, Amanda M; Mathies, Richard A

    2013-08-20

    A fully integrated multilayer microfluidic chemical analyzer for automated sample processing and labeling, as well as analysis using capillary zone electrophoresis is developed and characterized. Using lifting gate microfluidic control valve technology, a microfluidic automaton consisting of a two-dimensional microvalve cellular array is fabricated with soft lithography in a format that enables facile integration with a microfluidic capillary electrophoresis device. The programmable sample processor performs precise mixing, metering, and routing operations that can be combined to achieve automation of complex and diverse assay protocols. Sample labeling protocols for amino acid, aldehyde/ketone and carboxylic acid analysis are performed automatically followed by automated transfer and analysis by the integrated microfluidic capillary electrophoresis chip. Equivalent performance to off-chip sample processing is demonstrated for each compound class; the automated analysis resulted in a limit of detection of ~16 nM for amino acids. Our microfluidic automaton provides a fully automated, portable microfluidic analysis system capable of autonomous analysis of diverse compound classes in challenging environments.

  17. Orbital Fluid Transfer System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnston, A. S., (Nick); Ryder, Mel; Tyler, Tony R.

    1998-01-01

    An automated fluid and power interface system needs to be developed for future space missions which require on orbit consumable replenishment. Current method of fluid transfer require manned vehicles and extravehicular activity. Currently the US does not have an automated capability for consumable transfer on-orbit. This technology would benefit both Space Station and long duration satellites. In order to provide this technology the Automated Fluid Interface System (AFIS) was developed. The AFIS project was an advanced development program aimed at developing a prototype satellite servicer for future space operations. This mechanism could transfer propellants, cryogens, fluids, gasses, electrical power, and communications from a tanker unit to the orbiting satellite. The development of this unit was a cooperative effort between Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, and Moog, Inc. in East Aurora, New York. An engineering model was built and underwent substantial development testing at Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC). While the AFIS is not suitable for spaceflight, testing and evaluation of the AFIS provided significant experience which would be beneficial in building a flight unit. The lessons learned from testing the AFIS provided the foundation for the next generation fluid transfer mechanism, the Orbital Fluid Transfer System (OFTS). The OFTS project was a study contract with MSFC and Moog, Inc. The OFTS was designed for the International Space Station (ISS), but its flexible design could used for long duration satellite missions and other applications. The OFTS was designed to be used after docking. The primary function was to transfer bipropellants and high pressure gases. The other items addressed by this task included propellant storage, hardware integration, safety and control system issues. A new concept for high pressure couplings was also developed. The results of the AFIS testing provided an excellent basis for the OFTS design. The OFTS

  18. A 96-well screen filter plate for high-throughput biological sample preparation and LC-MS/MS analysis.

    PubMed

    Peng, Sean X; Cousineau, Martin; Juzwin, Stephen J; Ritchie, David M

    2006-01-01

    A novel 96-well screen filter plate (patent pending) has been invented to eliminate a time-consuming and labor-intensive step in preparation of in vivo study samples--to remove blood or plasma clots. These clots plug the pipet tips during a manual or automated sample-transfer step causing inaccurate pipetting or total pipetting failure. Traditionally, these blood and plasma clots are removed by picking them out manually one by one from each sample tube before any sample transfer can be made. This has significantly slowed the sample preparation process and has become a bottleneck for automated high-throughput sample preparation using robotic liquid handlers. Our novel screen filter plate was developed to solve this problem. The 96-well screen filter plate consists of 96 stainless steel wire-mesh screen tubes connected to the 96 openings of a top plate so that the screen filter plate can be readily inserted into a 96-well sample storage plate. Upon insertion, the blood and plasma clots are excluded from entering the screen tube while clear sample solutions flow freely into it. In this way, sample transfer can be easily completed by either manual or automated pipetting methods. In this report, three structurally diverse compounds were selected to evaluate and validate the use of the screen filter plate. The plasma samples of these compounds were transferred and processed in the presence and absence of the screen filter plate and then analyzed by LC-MS/MS methods. Our results showed a good agreement between the samples prepared with and without the screen filter plate, demonstrating the utility and efficiency of this novel device for preparation of blood and plasma samples. The device is simple, easy to use, and reusable. It can be employed for sample preparation of other biological fluids that contain floating particulates or aggregates.

  19. Technical Note: A fully automated purge and trap GC-MS system for quantification of volatile organic compound (VOC) fluxes between the ocean and atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andrews, S. J.; Hackenberg, S. C.; Carpenter, L. J.

    2015-04-01

    The oceans are a key source of a number of atmospherically important volatile gases. The accurate and robust determination of trace gases in seawater is a significant analytical challenge, requiring reproducible and ideally automated sample handling, a high efficiency of seawater-air transfer, removal of water vapour from the sample stream, and high sensitivity and selectivity of the analysis. Here we describe a system that was developed for the fully automated analysis of dissolved very short-lived halogenated species (VSLS) sampled from an under-way seawater supply. The system can also be used for semi-automated batch sampling from Niskin bottles filled during CTD (conductivity, temperature, depth) profiles. The essential components comprise a bespoke, automated purge and trap (AutoP & T) unit coupled to a commercial thermal desorption and gas chromatograph mass spectrometer (TD-GC-MS). The AutoP & T system has completed five research cruises, from the tropics to the poles, and collected over 2500 oceanic samples to date. It is able to quantify >25 species over a boiling point range of 34-180 °C with Henry's law coefficients of 0.018 and greater (CH22l, kHcc dimensionless gas/aqueous) and has been used to measure organic sulfurs, hydrocarbons, halocarbons and terpenes. In the eastern tropical Pacific, the high sensitivity and sampling frequency provided new information regarding the distribution of VSLS, including novel measurements of a photolytically driven diurnal cycle of CH22l within the surface ocean water.

  20. Management Planning for Workplace Automation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McDole, Thomas L.

    Several factors must be considered when implementing office automation. Included among these are whether or not to automate at all, the effects of automation on employees, requirements imposed by automation on the physical environment, effects of automation on the total organization, and effects on clientele. The reasons behind the success or…

  1. Laboratory Automation and Middleware.

    PubMed

    Riben, Michael

    2015-06-01

    The practice of surgical pathology is under constant pressure to deliver the highest quality of service, reduce errors, increase throughput, and decrease turnaround time while at the same time dealing with an aging workforce, increasing financial constraints, and economic uncertainty. Although not able to implement total laboratory automation, great progress continues to be made in workstation automation in all areas of the pathology laboratory. This report highlights the benefits and challenges of pathology automation, reviews middleware and its use to facilitate automation, and reviews the progress so far in the anatomic pathology laboratory.

  2. Automated Microbial Metabolism Laboratory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1972-01-01

    The Automated Microbial Metabolism Laboratory (AMML) 1971-1972 program involved the investigation of three separate life detection schemes. The first was a continued further development of the labeled release experiment. The possibility of chamber reuse without inbetween sterilization, to provide comparative biochemical information was tested. Findings show that individual substrates or concentrations of antimetabolites may be sequentially added to a single test chamber. The second detection system which was investigated for possible inclusion in the AMML package of assays, was nitrogen fixation as detected by acetylene reduction. Thirdly, a series of preliminary steps were taken to investigate the feasibility of detecting biopolymers in soil. A strategy for the safe return to Earth of a Mars sample prior to manned landings on Mars is outlined. The program assumes that the probability of indigenous life on Mars is unity and then broadly presents the procedures for acquisition and analysis of the Mars sample in a manner to satisfy the scientific community and the public that adequate safeguards are being taken.

  3. Sensors and Automated Analyzers for Radionuclides

    SciTech Connect

    Grate, Jay W.; Egorov, Oleg B.

    2003-03-27

    The production of nuclear weapons materials has generated large quantities of nuclear waste and significant environmental contamination. We have developed new, rapid, automated methods for determination of radionuclides using sequential injection methodologies to automate extraction chromatographic separations, with on-line flow-through scintillation counting for real time detection. This work has progressed in two main areas: radionuclide sensors for water monitoring and automated radiochemical analyzers for monitoring nuclear waste processing operations. Radionuclide sensors have been developed that collect and concentrate radionuclides in preconcentrating minicolumns with dual functionality: chemical selectivity for radionuclide capture and scintillation for signal output. These sensors can detect pertechnetate to below regulatory levels and have been engineered into a prototype for field testing. A fully automated process monitor has been developed for total technetium in nuclear waste streams. This instrument performs sample acidification, speciation adjustment, separation and detection in fifteen minutes or less.

  4. Laboratory automation in clinical bacteriology: what system to choose?

    PubMed

    Croxatto, A; Prod'hom, G; Faverjon, F; Rochais, Y; Greub, G

    2016-03-01

    Automation was introduced many years ago in several diagnostic disciplines such as chemistry, haematology and molecular biology. The first laboratory automation system for clinical bacteriology was released in 2006, and it rapidly proved its value by increasing productivity, allowing a continuous increase in sample volumes despite limited budgets and personnel shortages. Today, two major manufacturers, BD Kiestra and Copan, are commercializing partial or complete laboratory automation systems for bacteriology. The laboratory automation systems are rapidly evolving to provide improved hardware and software solutions to optimize laboratory efficiency. However, the complex parameters of the laboratory and automation systems must be considered to determine the best system for each given laboratory. We address several topics on laboratory automation that may help clinical bacteriologists to understand the particularities and operative modalities of the different systems. We present (a) a comparison of the engineering and technical features of the various elements composing the two different automated systems currently available, (b) the system workflows of partial and complete laboratory automation, which define the basis for laboratory reorganization required to optimize system efficiency, (c) the concept of digital imaging and telebacteriology, (d) the connectivity of laboratory automation to the laboratory information system, (e) the general advantages and disadvantages as well as the expected impacts provided by laboratory automation and (f) the laboratory data required to conduct a workflow assessment to determine the best configuration of an automated system for the laboratory activities and specificities.

  5. Automating Initial Guess Generation for High Fidelity Trajectory Optimization Tools

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Villa, Benjamin; Lantoine, Gregory; Sims, Jon; Whiffen, Gregory

    2013-01-01

    Many academic studies in spaceflight dynamics rely on simplified dynamical models, such as restricted three-body models or averaged forms of the equations of motion of an orbiter. In practice, the end result of these preliminary orbit studies needs to be transformed into more realistic models, in particular to generate good initial guesses for high-fidelity trajectory optimization tools like Mystic. This paper reviews and extends some of the approaches used in the literature to perform such a task, and explores the inherent trade-offs of such a transformation with a view toward automating it for the case of ballistic arcs. Sample test cases in the libration point regimes and small body orbiter transfers are presented.

  6. Automating checks of plan check automation.

    PubMed

    Halabi, Tarek; Lu, Hsiao-Ming

    2014-07-08

    While a few physicists have designed new plan check automation solutions for their clinics, fewer, if any, managed to adapt existing solutions. As complex and varied as the systems they check, these programs must gain the full confidence of those who would run them on countless patient plans. The present automation effort, planCheck, therefore focuses on versatility and ease of implementation and verification. To demonstrate this, we apply planCheck to proton gantry, stereotactic proton gantry, stereotactic proton fixed beam (STAR), and IMRT treatments.

  7. WANTED: Fully Automated Indexing.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Purcell, Royal

    1991-01-01

    Discussion of indexing focuses on the possibilities of fully automated indexing. Topics discussed include controlled indexing languages such as subject heading lists and thesauri, free indexing languages, natural indexing languages, computer-aided indexing, expert systems, and the need for greater creativity to further advance automated indexing.…

  8. The Automated Office.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Naclerio, Nick

    1979-01-01

    Clerical personnel may be able to climb career ladders as a result of office automation and expanded job opportunities in the word processing area. Suggests opportunities in an automated office system and lists books and periodicals on word processing for counselors and teachers. (MF)

  9. Planning for Office Automation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sherron, Gene T.

    1982-01-01

    The steps taken toward office automation by the University of Maryland are described. Office automation is defined and some types of word processing systems are described. Policies developed in the writing of a campus plan are listed, followed by a section on procedures adopted to implement the plan. (Author/MLW)

  10. Work and Programmable Automation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    DeVore, Paul W.

    A new industrial era based on electronics and the microprocessor has arrived, an era that is being called intelligent automation. Intelligent automation, in the form of robots, replaces workers, and the new products, using microelectronic devices, require significantly less labor to produce than the goods they replace. The microprocessor thus…

  11. Order Division Automated System.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kniemeyer, Justin M.; And Others

    This publication was prepared by the Order Division Automation Project staff to fulfill the Library of Congress' requirement to document all automation efforts. The report was originally intended for internal use only and not for distribution outside the Library. It is now felt that the library community at-large may have an interest in the…

  12. Automation and Cataloging.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Furuta, Kenneth; And Others

    1990-01-01

    These three articles address issues in library cataloging that are affected by automation: (1) the impact of automation and bibliographic utilities on professional catalogers; (2) the effect of the LASS microcomputer software on the cost of authority work in cataloging at the University of Arizona; and (3) online subject heading and classification…

  13. Automation in Immunohematology

    PubMed Central

    Bajpai, Meenu; Kaur, Ravneet; Gupta, Ekta

    2012-01-01

    There have been rapid technological advances in blood banking in South Asian region over the past decade with an increasing emphasis on quality and safety of blood products. The conventional test tube technique has given way to newer techniques such as column agglutination technique, solid phase red cell adherence assay, and erythrocyte-magnetized technique. These new technologies are adaptable to automation and major manufacturers in this field have come up with semi and fully automated equipments for immunohematology tests in the blood bank. Automation improves the objectivity and reproducibility of tests. It reduces human errors in patient identification and transcription errors. Documentation and traceability of tests, reagents and processes and archiving of results is another major advantage of automation. Shifting from manual methods to automation is a major undertaking for any transfusion service to provide quality patient care with lesser turnaround time for their ever increasing workload. This article discusses the various issues involved in the process. PMID:22988378

  14. Advances in inspection automation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weber, Walter H.; Mair, H. Douglas; Jansen, Dion; Lombardi, Luciano

    2013-01-01

    This new session at QNDE reflects the growing interest in inspection automation. Our paper describes a newly developed platform that makes the complex NDE automation possible without the need for software programmers. Inspection tasks that are tedious, error-prone or impossible for humans to perform can now be automated using a form of drag and drop visual scripting. Our work attempts to rectify the problem that NDE is not keeping pace with the rest of factory automation. Outside of NDE, robots routinely and autonomously machine parts, assemble components, weld structures and report progress to corporate databases. By contrast, components arriving in the NDT department typically require manual part handling, calibrations and analysis. The automation examples in this paper cover the development of robotic thickness gauging and the use of adaptive contour following on the NRU reactor inspection at Chalk River.

  15. Effects of automation of information-processing functions on teamwork.

    PubMed

    Wright, Melanie C; Kaber, David B

    2005-01-01

    We investigated the effects of automation as applied to different stages of information processing on team performance in a complex decision-making task. Forty teams of 2 individuals performed a simulated Theater Defense Task. Four automation conditions were simulated with computer assistance applied to realistic combinations of information acquisition, information analysis, and decision selection functions across two levels of task difficulty. Multiple measures of team effectiveness and team coordination were used. Results indicated different forms of automation have different effects on teamwork. Compared with a baseline condition, an increase in automation of information acquisition led to an increase in the ratio of information transferred to information requested; an increase in automation of information analysis resulted in higher team coordination ratings; and automation of decision selection led to better team effectiveness under low levels of task difficulty but at the cost of higher workload. The results support the use of early and intermediate forms of automation related to acquisition and analysis of information in the design of team tasks. Decision-making automation may provide benefits in more limited contexts. Applications of this research include the design and evaluation of automation in team environments.

  16. New hardware and workflows for semi-automated correlative cryo-fluorescence and cryo-electron microscopy/tomography.

    PubMed

    Schorb, Martin; Gaechter, Leander; Avinoam, Ori; Sieckmann, Frank; Clarke, Mairi; Bebeacua, Cecilia; Bykov, Yury S; Sonnen, Andreas F-P; Lihl, Reinhard; Briggs, John A G

    2017-02-01

    Correlative light and electron microscopy allows features of interest defined by fluorescence signals to be located in an electron micrograph of the same sample. Rare dynamic events or specific objects can be identified, targeted and imaged by electron microscopy or tomography. To combine it with structural studies using cryo-electron microscopy or tomography, fluorescence microscopy must be performed while maintaining the specimen vitrified at liquid-nitrogen temperatures and in a dry environment during imaging and transfer. Here we present instrumentation, software and an experimental workflow that improves the ease of use, throughput and performance of correlated cryo-fluorescence and cryo-electron microscopy. The new cryo-stage incorporates a specially modified high-numerical aperture objective lens and provides a stable and clean imaging environment. It is combined with a transfer shuttle for contamination-free loading of the specimen. Optimized microscope control software allows automated acquisition of the entire specimen area by cryo-fluorescence microscopy. The software also facilitates direct transfer of the fluorescence image and associated coordinates to the cryo-electron microscope for subsequent fluorescence-guided automated imaging. Here we describe these technological developments and present a detailed workflow, which we applied for automated cryo-electron microscopy and tomography of various specimens.

  17. Semi-automated tandem mass spectrometric (MS/MS) triple quadrupole operating parameter optimization for high-throughput MS/MS detection workflows.

    PubMed

    Geddes, Kristin; Adamson, Gary; Dube, Neal; Crathern, Susan; King, Richard C

    2009-05-01

    This paper describes an automated workflow for the determination of selected reaction monitoring (SRM) transitions and optimum mass spectrometric (MS) instrument parameters. The approach uses a Nanomate from Advion Biosciences for automated infusion of small amounts of sample in combination with Automaton optimization software from Sciex. The results are stored in the Analyst software Compound Database for automated acquisition method building. Comparisons are presented between the more traditional optimization methods of manual flow injection optimization, Autotune infusion optimization, Automaton flow injection optimization and the Nanomate-Automaton optimization approach. Data is also presented to show that acquisition methods developed on the Sciex model API3000 instrument can be effectively transferred to the Sceix API4000 and API5000 model instruments.

  18. Human performance in a multiple-task environment: effects of automation reliability on visual attention allocation.

    PubMed

    Cullen, Ralph H; Rogers, Wendy A; Fisk, Arthur D

    2013-11-01

    Diagnostic automation has been posited to alleviate the high demands of multiple-task environments; however, mixed effects have been found pertaining to performance aid success. To better understand these effects, attention allocation must be studied directly. We developed a multiple-task environment to study the effects of automation on visual attention. Participants interacted with a system providing varying levels of automation and automation reliability and then were transferred to a system with no support. Attention allocation was measured by tracking the number of times each task was viewed. We found that participants receiving automation allocated their time according to the task frequency and that tasks that benefited most from automation were most harmed when it was removed. The results suggest that the degree to which automation affects multiple-task performance is dependent on the relative attributes of the tasks involved. Moreover, there is an inverse relationship between support and cost when automation fails.

  19. Testing of the Automated Fluid Interface System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnston, A. S.; Tyler, Tony R.

    1998-01-01

    The Automated Fluid Interface System (AFIS) is an advanced development prototype satellite servicer. The device was designed to transfer consumables from one spacecraft to another. An engineering model was built and underwent development testing at Marshall Space Flight Center. While the current AFIS is not suitable for spaceflight, testing and evaluation of the AFIS provided significant experience which would be beneficial in building a flight unit.

  20. Integrated sampling procedure for metabolome analysis.

    PubMed

    Schaub, Jochen; Schiesling, Carola; Reuss, Matthias; Dauner, Michael

    2006-01-01

    Metabolome analysis, the analysis of large sets of intracellular metabolites, has become an important systems analysis method in biotechnological and pharmaceutical research. In metabolic engineering, the integration of metabolome data with fluxome and proteome data into large-scale mathematical models promises to foster rational strategies for strain and cell line improvement. However, the development of reproducible sampling procedures for quantitative analysis of intracellular metabolite concentrations represents a major challenge, accomplishing (i) fast transfer of sample, (ii) efficient quenching of metabolism, (iii) quantitative metabolite extraction, and (iv) optimum sample conditioning for subsequent quantitative analysis. In addressing these requirements, we propose an integrated sampling procedure. Simultaneous quenching and quantitative extraction of intracellular metabolites were realized by short-time exposure of cells to temperatures < or =95 degrees C, where intracellular metabolites are released quantitatively. Based on these findings, we combined principles of heat transfer with knowledge on physiology, for example, turnover rates of energy metabolites, to develop an optimized sampling procedure based on a coiled single tube heat exchanger. As a result, this sampling procedure enables reliable and reproducible measurements through (i) the integration of three unit operations into a one unit operation, (ii) the avoidance of any alteration of the sample due to chemical reagents in quenching and extraction, and (iii) automation. A sampling frequency of 5 s(-)(1) and an overall individual sample processing time faster than 30 s allow observing responses of intracellular metabolite concentrations to extracellular stimuli on a subsecond time scale. Recovery and reliability of the unit operations were analyzed. Impact of sample conditioning on subsequent IC-MS analysis of metabolites was examined as well. The integrated sampling procedure was validated

  1. Automated Fabrication Technologies for High Performance Polymer Composites

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shuart , M. J.; Johnston, N. J.; Dexter, H. B.; Marchello, J. M.; Grenoble, R. W.

    1998-01-01

    New fabrication technologies are being exploited for building high graphite-fiber-reinforced composite structure. Stitched fiber preforms and resin film infusion have been successfully demonstrated for large, composite wing structures. Other automatic processes being developed include automated placement of tacky, drapable epoxy towpreg, automated heated head placement of consolidated ribbon/tape, and vacuum-assisted resin transfer molding. These methods have the potential to yield low cost high performance structures by fabricating composite structures to net shape out-of-autoclave.

  2. Systematic review automation technologies.

    PubMed

    Tsafnat, Guy; Glasziou, Paul; Choong, Miew Keen; Dunn, Adam; Galgani, Filippo; Coiera, Enrico

    2014-07-09

    Systematic reviews, a cornerstone of evidence-based medicine, are not produced quickly enough to support clinical practice. The cost of production, availability of the requisite expertise and timeliness are often quoted as major contributors for the delay. This detailed survey of the state of the art of information systems designed to support or automate individual tasks in the systematic review, and in particular systematic reviews of randomized controlled clinical trials, reveals trends that see the convergence of several parallel research projects.We surveyed literature describing informatics systems that support or automate the processes of systematic review or each of the tasks of the systematic review. Several projects focus on automating, simplifying and/or streamlining specific tasks of the systematic review. Some tasks are already fully automated while others are still largely manual. In this review, we describe each task and the effect that its automation would have on the entire systematic review process, summarize the existing information system support for each task, and highlight where further research is needed for realizing automation for the task. Integration of the systems that automate systematic review tasks may lead to a revised systematic review workflow. We envisage the optimized workflow will lead to system in which each systematic review is described as a computer program that automatically retrieves relevant trials, appraises them, extracts and synthesizes data, evaluates the risk of bias, performs meta-analysis calculations, and produces a report in real time.

  3. Systematic review automation technologies

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Systematic reviews, a cornerstone of evidence-based medicine, are not produced quickly enough to support clinical practice. The cost of production, availability of the requisite expertise and timeliness are often quoted as major contributors for the delay. This detailed survey of the state of the art of information systems designed to support or automate individual tasks in the systematic review, and in particular systematic reviews of randomized controlled clinical trials, reveals trends that see the convergence of several parallel research projects. We surveyed literature describing informatics systems that support or automate the processes of systematic review or each of the tasks of the systematic review. Several projects focus on automating, simplifying and/or streamlining specific tasks of the systematic review. Some tasks are already fully automated while others are still largely manual. In this review, we describe each task and the effect that its automation would have on the entire systematic review process, summarize the existing information system support for each task, and highlight where further research is needed for realizing automation for the task. Integration of the systems that automate systematic review tasks may lead to a revised systematic review workflow. We envisage the optimized workflow will lead to system in which each systematic review is described as a computer program that automatically retrieves relevant trials, appraises them, extracts and synthesizes data, evaluates the risk of bias, performs meta-analysis calculations, and produces a report in real time. PMID:25005128

  4. Streamlining and automation of radioanalytical methods at a commercial laboratory

    SciTech Connect

    Harvey, J.T.; Dillard, J.W.

    1993-12-31

    Through the careful planning and design of laboratory facilities and incorporation of modern instrumentation and robotics systems, properly trained and competent laboratory associates can efficiently and safely handle radioactive and mixed waste samples. This paper addresses the potential improvements radiochemistry and mixed waste laboratories can achieve utilizing robotics for automated sample analysis. Several examples of automated systems for sample preparation and analysis will be discussed.

  5. Automating Energy Bandgap Measurements in Semiconductors Using LabVIEW

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Garg, Amit; Sharma, Reena; Dhingra, Vishal

    2010-01-01

    In this paper, we report the development of an automated system for energy bandgap and resistivity measurement of a semiconductor sample using Four-Probe method for use in the undergraduate laboratory of Physics and Electronics students. The automated data acquisition and analysis system has been developed using National Instruments USB-6008 DAQ…

  6. Automated Verification of Spatial Resolution in Remotely Sensed Imagery

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Davis, Bruce; Ryan, Robert; Holekamp, Kara; Vaughn, Ronald

    2011-01-01

    Image spatial resolution characteristics can vary widely among sources. In the case of aerial-based imaging systems, the image spatial resolution characteristics can even vary between acquisitions. In these systems, aircraft altitude, speed, and sensor look angle all affect image spatial resolution. Image spatial resolution needs to be verified with estimators that include the ground sample distance (GSD), the modulation transfer function (MTF), and the relative edge response (RER), all of which are key components of image quality, along with signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) and dynamic range. Knowledge of spatial resolution parameters is important to determine if features of interest are distinguishable in imagery or associated products, and to develop image restoration algorithms. An automated Spatial Resolution Verification Tool (SRVT) was developed to rapidly determine the spatial resolution characteristics of remotely sensed aerial and satellite imagery. Most current methods for assessing spatial resolution characteristics of imagery rely on pre-deployed engineered targets and are performed only at selected times within preselected scenes. The SRVT addresses these insufficiencies by finding uniform, high-contrast edges from urban scenes and then using these edges to determine standard estimators of spatial resolution, such as the MTF and the RER. The SRVT was developed using the MATLAB programming language and environment. This automated software algorithm assesses every image in an acquired data set, using edges found within each image, and in many cases eliminating the need for dedicated edge targets. The SRVT automatically identifies high-contrast, uniform edges and calculates the MTF and RER of each image, and when possible, within sections of an image, so that the variation of spatial resolution characteristics across the image can be analyzed. The automated algorithm is capable of quickly verifying the spatial resolution quality of all images within a data

  7. Materials for Heated Head Automated Thermoplastic Tape Placement

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jensen, Brian J.; Kinney, Megan C.; Cano, Roberto J.; Grimsley, Brian W.

    2012-01-01

    NASA Langley Research Center (LaRC) is currently pursuing multiple paths to develop out of autoclave (OOA) polymeric composite materials and processes. Polymeric composite materials development includes the synthesis of new and/or modified thermosetting and thermoplastic matrix resins designed for specific OOA processes. OOA processes currently under investigation include vacuum bag only (VBO) prepreg/composite fabrication, resin transfer molding (RTM), vacuum assisted resin transfer molding (VARTM) and heated head automated thermoplastic tape placement (HHATP). This paper will discuss the NASA Langley HHATP facility and capabilities and recent work on characterizing thermoplastic tape quality and requirements for quality part production. Samples of three distinct versions of APC-2 (AS4/PEEK) thermoplastic dry tape were obtained from two materials vendors, TENCATE, Inc. and CYTEC Engineered Materials** (standard grade and an experimental batch). Random specimens were taken from each of these samples and subjected to photo-microscopy and surface profilometry. The CYTEC standard grade of APC-2 tape had the most voids and splits and the highest surface roughness and/or waviness. Since the APC-2 tape is composed of a thermoplastic matrix, it offers the flexibility of reprocessing to improve quality, and thereby improve final quality of HHATP laminates. Discussions will also include potential research areas and future work that is required to advance the state of the art in the HHATP process for composite fabrication.

  8. Automated Visual Control System For Gob Feeders

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Molesworth, Hugh; Vann, Tony

    1983-08-01

    The usable throughput and hence profitability of an automated glass bottle production line depends, amongst other factors, on the weight of glass in each bottle. Present techniques often rely on manual weighing of bottles on a sample basis with manual control of the feeder which forms the gobs from which the bottles are produced. Currently available automated weighing systems provide improved control although the weight measurement is still done only on a sample basis. All such weight measurement systems produce an undesirable delay before the bottle is safely available for weighing. This paper describes an automated visual gob weight control system which overcomes both of the above major limitations of existing control systems. The weight of every gob is calculated by visual scanning in free fall before the bottle is formed, allowing a fast and accurate closed-loop control system to be implemented.

  9. Automated fluid analysis apparatus and techniques

    DOEpatents

    Szecsody, James E.

    2004-03-16

    An automated device that couples a pair of differently sized sample loops with a syringe pump and a source of degassed water. A fluid sample is mounted at an inlet port and delivered to the sample loops. A selected sample from the sample loops is diluted in the syringe pump with the degassed water and fed to a flow through detector for analysis. The sample inlet is also directly connected to the syringe pump to selectively perform analysis without dilution. The device is airtight and used to detect oxygen-sensitive species, such as dithionite in groundwater following a remedial injection to treat soil contamination.

  10. Managing laboratory automation

    PubMed Central

    Saboe, Thomas J.

    1995-01-01

    This paper discusses the process of managing automated systems through their life cycles within the quality-control (QC) laboratory environment. The focus is on the process of directing and managing the evolving automation of a laboratory; system examples are given. The author shows how both task and data systems have evolved, and how they interrelate. A BIG picture, or continuum view, is presented and some of the reasons for success or failure of the various examples cited are explored. Finally, some comments on future automation need are discussed. PMID:18925018

  11. The contaminant analysis automation project: The implementation of a new automation strategy

    SciTech Connect

    Erkkila, T.H.; Hollen, R.M.

    1995-12-01

    The U.S. Department of Energy`s Contaminant Analysis Automation (CAA) Project is implementing a new automation strategy. The basis of this new strategy is a fully modular architecture, which provides a {open_quotes}plug-and-play{close_quotes} environment for the laboratory chemist to rapidly put together a functioning system for automating sample preparation, sample analysis, and data interpretation. The basic building block of this architecture is the Standard Laboratory Module (SLM). The CAA Project is currently implementing this new automation strategy in an environmental chemistry application. Two Environmental Protection Agency methods, EPA SW846 3540 and 3550, followed by method EPA 8080 as chromatography (GC) analysis, followed by computer assisted data interpretation are the objective of this implementation. Several SLMs perform automated sample preparation of soil samples, a commercially available GC analyzes the samples, and a suite of software modules assist the analyst in interpreting the data and making the determinations. In this paper, we present the progress of the project and some results generated by our system thus far.

  12. Automated external defibrillation: laboratory evaluation.

    PubMed

    Rosenthal, E; Carroll, D; Vincent, R; Chamberlain, D A

    1984-04-01

    Twelve samples of ventricular fibrillation were fed into nine automated external defibrillator-pacemakers ( AEDP , "Heart Aid") of recent design. All the devices recognised and defibrillated ventricular fibrillation in seven of the samples within 30 sec. None of the devices reacted to two of the samples; in the remaining three there was inter-device variation ranging from an appropriate response to no response, as well as inappropriate pacing or delay in recognition and treatment. Poor recognition of some ventricular fibrillation waveforms with considerable inter-device variation limits the usefulness of this model. A new prototype responded more consistently and future models may be of value in community resuscitation. The difficulty of evaluating the diagnostic capability of AEDP devices in clinical use makes comprehensive laboratory testing essential prior to release.

  13. Robotic automation of the environmental chemical laboratory

    SciTech Connect

    Hollen, R.M.; Erkkila, T.H.

    1994-04-01

    To date, automation of the environmental chemical laboratory has been a slow and tedious affair. In many, of our domestic analytical laboratories, automation consists of no more than analytical instrumentation coupled to an autosampling device. When we look into the future environmental needs of our nation, and indeed the world, it is apparent that we will not be able to keep up with the drastically increasing sample load without automated analyses. Stricter regulatory requirements on the horizon will potentially mandate staggering changes in sampling and characterization requirements. The Contaminant Analysis Automation (CAA) Program was initiated in 1990 by the US government`s Department of Energy (DOE) to address these issues. By application of a new robotics paradigm, based on an integrated production chemistry foundation applied to analytical chemistry, the CAA will use standardized modular instruments called Standard Laboratory Modules (SLM) to provide flexible and standardized automation systems. By promoting the commercialization of this technology, CAA will provide the integrated robotics systems necessary to meet the coming remediation demands. This multilaboratory program is within the Robotics Technology Development Program (RTDP) of the Office of Technology Development (OTD).

  14. Automated Aflatoxin Analysis Using Inline Reusable Immunoaffinity Column Cleanup and LC-Fluorescence Detection.

    PubMed

    Rhemrev, Ria; Pazdanska, Monika; Marley, Elaine; Biselli, Scarlett; Staiger, Simone

    2015-01-01

    A novel reusable immunoaffinity cartridge containing monoclonal antibodies to aflatoxins coupled to a pressure resistant polymer has been developed. The cartridge is used in conjunction with a handling system inline to LC with fluorescence detection to provide fully automated aflatoxin analysis for routine monitoring of a variety of food matrixes. The handling system selects an immunoaffinity cartridge from a tray and automatically applies the sample extract. The cartridge is washed, then aflatoxins B1, B2, G1, and G2 are eluted and transferred inline to the LC system for quantitative analysis using fluorescence detection with postcolumn derivatization using a KOBRA® cell. Each immunoaffinity cartridge can be used up to 15 times without loss in performance, offering increased sample throughput and reduced costs compared to conventional manual sample preparation and cleanup. The system was validated in two independent laboratories using samples of peanuts and maize spiked at 2, 8, and 40 μg/kg total aflatoxins, and paprika, nutmeg, and dried figs spiked at 5, 20, and 100 μg/kg total aflatoxins. Recoveries exceeded 80% for both aflatoxin B1 and total aflatoxins. The between-day repeatability ranged from 2.1 to 9.6% for aflatoxin B1 for the six levels and five matrixes. Satisfactory Z-scores were obtained with this automated system when used for participation in proficiency testing (FAPAS®) for samples of chilli powder and hazelnut paste containing aflatoxins.

  15. Automated decision stations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tischendorf, Mark

    1990-01-01

    This paper discusses the combination of software robots and expert systems to automate everyday business tasks. Tasks which require people to repetitively interact with multiple systems screens as well as multiple systems.

  16. Automating the Media Center.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Holloway, Mary A.

    1988-01-01

    Discusses the need to develop more efficient information retrieval skills by the use of new technology. Lists four stages used in automating the media center. Describes North Carolina's pilot programs. Proposes benefits and looks at the media center's future. (MVL)

  17. Planning for Office Automation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mick, Colin K.

    1983-01-01

    Outlines a practical approach to planning for office automation termed the "Focused Process Approach" (the "what" phase, "how" phase, "doing" phase) which is a synthesis of the problem-solving and participatory planning approaches. Thirteen references are provided. (EJS)

  18. Xenon International Automated Control

    SciTech Connect

    2016-08-05

    The Xenon International Automated Control software monitors, displays status, and allows for manual operator control as well as fully automatic control of multiple commercial and PNNL designed hardware components to generate and transmit atmospheric radioxenon concentration measurements every six hours.

  19. Automated Cyber Red Teaming

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-04-01

    possible attack paths for CRT. This report surveys the current state-of-the- art planning techniques, tools and frameworks, their performance at...6 3.3 State of the art Automated Planning ..................................................................... 7 3.3.1...automated planning to CRT problems. Finally, we recommend several state-of-the- art planning tools for trial and, more generally, when it is suitable to use

  20. Automating Index Preparation

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1987-03-23

    Automating Index Preparation* Pehong Chent Michael A. Harrison Computer Science Division University of CaliforniaI Berkeley, CA 94720 March 23, 1987...Abstract Index preparation is a tedious and time-consuming task. In this paper we indicate * how the indexing process can be automated in a way which...identified and analyzed. Specifically, we describe a framework for placing index commands in the document and a general purpose index processor which

  1. Automated Pilot Advisory System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Parks, J. L., Jr.; Haidt, J. G.

    1981-01-01

    An Automated Pilot Advisory System (APAS) was developed and operationally tested to demonstrate the concept that low cost automated systems can provide air traffic and aviation weather advisory information at high density uncontrolled airports. The system was designed to enhance the see and be seen rule of flight, and pilots who used the system preferred it over the self announcement system presently used at uncontrolled airports.

  2. Automated Lattice Perturbation Theory

    SciTech Connect

    Monahan, Christopher

    2014-11-01

    I review recent developments in automated lattice perturbation theory. Starting with an overview of lattice perturbation theory, I focus on the three automation packages currently "on the market": HiPPy/HPsrc, Pastor and PhySyCAl. I highlight some recent applications of these methods, particularly in B physics. In the final section I briefly discuss the related, but distinct, approach of numerical stochastic perturbation theory.

  3. Automated Status Notification System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    NASA Lewis Research Center's Automated Status Notification System (ASNS) was born out of need. To prevent "hacker attacks," Lewis' telephone system needed to monitor communications activities 24 hr a day, 7 days a week. With decreasing staff resources, this continuous monitoring had to be automated. By utilizing existing communications hardware, a UNIX workstation, and NAWK (a pattern scanning and processing language), we implemented a continuous monitoring system.

  4. Automated Groundwater Screening

    SciTech Connect

    Taylor, Glenn A.; Collard, Leonard, B.

    2005-10-31

    The Automated Intruder Analysis has been extended to include an Automated Ground Water Screening option. This option screens 825 radionuclides while rigorously applying the National Council on Radiation Protection (NCRP) methodology. An extension to that methodology is presented to give a more realistic screening factor for those radionuclides which have significant daughters. The extension has the promise of reducing the number of radionuclides which must be tracked by the customer. By combining the Automated Intruder Analysis with the Automated Groundwater Screening a consistent set of assumptions and databases is used. A method is proposed to eliminate trigger values by performing rigorous calculation of the screening factor thereby reducing the number of radionuclides sent to further analysis. Using the same problem definitions as in previous groundwater screenings, the automated groundwater screening found one additional nuclide, Ge-68, which failed the screening. It also found that 18 of the 57 radionuclides contained in NCRP Table 3.1 failed the screening. This report describes the automated groundwater screening computer application.

  5. Automated Speech Rate Measurement in Dysarthria

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Martens, Heidi; Dekens, Tomas; Van Nuffelen, Gwen; Latacz, Lukas; Verhelst, Werner; De Bodt, Marc

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: In this study, a new algorithm for automated determination of speech rate (SR) in dysarthric speech is evaluated. We investigated how reliably the algorithm calculates the SR of dysarthric speech samples when compared with calculation performed by speech-language pathologists. Method: The new algorithm was trained and tested using Dutch…

  6. Elements of EAF automation processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ioana, A.; Constantin, N.; Dragna, E. C.

    2017-01-01

    Our article presents elements of Electric Arc Furnace (EAF) automation. So, we present and analyze detailed two automation schemes: the scheme of electrical EAF automation system; the scheme of thermic EAF automation system. The application results of these scheme of automation consists in: the sensitive reduction of specific consummation of electrical energy of Electric Arc Furnace, increasing the productivity of Electric Arc Furnace, increase the quality of the developed steel, increasing the durability of the building elements of Electric Arc Furnace.

  7. A compendium of controlled diffusion blades generated by an automated inverse design procedure

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sanz, Jose M.

    1989-01-01

    A set of sample cases was produced to test an automated design procedure developed at the NASA Lewis Research Center for the design of controlled diffusion blades. The range of application of the automated design procedure is documented. The results presented include characteristic compressor and turbine blade sections produced with the automated design code as well as various other airfoils produced with the base design method prior to the incorporation of the automated procedure.

  8. Radioanalytical Chemistry for Automated Nuclear Waste Process Monitoring

    SciTech Connect

    Jay W. Grate; Timothy A. DeVol

    2006-07-20

    The objectives of our research were to develop the first automated radiochemical process analyzer including sample pretreatment methodoology, and to initiate work on new detection approaches, especially using modified diode detectors.

  9. Single-run determination of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) di- to deca-brominated in fish meal, fish oil and fish feed by isotope dilution: application of automated sample purification and gas chromatography/ion trap tandem mass spectrometry (GC/ITMS).

    PubMed

    Blanco, Sonia Lucía; Vieites, Juan M

    2010-07-05

    The present paper describes the application of automated cleanup and fractionation procedures of the Power Prep system (Fluid Management Systems) for the determination of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in feeding stuffs and fish meal and oil. Gas chromatography (GC) separation followed by ion trap tandem mass spectrometry detection in EI mode (ITMS) allowed the analysis of di- to deca-BDEs in the samples matrices used in fish aquaculture. The method developed enabled the determination of 26 native PBDE congeners and 11 (13)C(12)-labelled congeners, including deca-BDE 209, in a single-run analysis, using isotope dilution. The automated cleanup, consisting of a succession of multilayer silica and basic alumina columns previously applied by Wyrzykowska et al. (2009) [28] in combustion flue gas, was successfully applied in our complex matrices. The method allowed an increase in productivity, i.e. lower time was required to process samples, and simultaneous purification of several samples was achieved at a time, reducing analyst dedication and human error input. Average recoveries of 43-96% were obtained. GC/ITMS can overcome the complexity originating from the sample matrix, eliminating matrix effects by tandem MS, to enable the detection of congeners penta- to nona-BDEs where interferent masses were present. The provisional detection limits, estimated in the samples, were 5-30 pg for di-, tri-, tetra-, and penta-BDEs, 20-65 pg for hexa-, hepta-, octa- and nona-BDEs, and 105 pg for deca-BDE. Reduction of deca-BDE 209 blank values is of concern to ongoing research. Good accuracy was obtained by application of the whole procedure, representing an efficient, low-cost and fast alternative for routine analyses.

  10. Advancing automation and robotics technology for the Space Station and for the US economy, volume 2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1985-01-01

    In response to Public Law 98-371, dated July 18, 1984, the NASA Advanced Technology Advisory Committee has studied automation and robotics for use in the Space Station. The Technical Report, Volume 2, provides background information on automation and robotics technologies and their potential and documents: the relevant aspects of Space Station design; representative examples of automation and robotics; applications; the state of the technology and advances needed; and considerations for technology transfer to U.S. industry and for space commercialization.

  11. Automated DNA extraction from pollen in honey.

    PubMed

    Guertler, Patrick; Eicheldinger, Adelina; Muschler, Paul; Goerlich, Ottmar; Busch, Ulrich

    2014-04-15

    In recent years, honey has become subject of DNA analysis due to potential risks evoked by microorganisms, allergens or genetically modified organisms. However, so far, only a few DNA extraction procedures are available, mostly time-consuming and laborious. Therefore, we developed an automated DNA extraction method from pollen in honey based on a CTAB buffer-based DNA extraction using the Maxwell 16 instrument and the Maxwell 16 FFS Nucleic Acid Extraction System, Custom-Kit. We altered several components and extraction parameters and compared the optimised method with a manual CTAB buffer-based DNA isolation method. The automated DNA extraction was faster and resulted in higher DNA yield and sufficient DNA purity. Real-time PCR results obtained after automated DNA extraction are comparable to results after manual DNA extraction. No PCR inhibition was observed. The applicability of this method was further successfully confirmed by analysis of different routine honey samples.

  12. Robofurnace: A semi-automated laboratory chemical vapor deposition system for high-throughput nanomaterial synthesis and process discovery

    PubMed Central

    Oliver, C. Ryan; Westrick, William; Koehler, Jeremy; Brieland-Shoultz, Anna; Anagnostopoulos-Politis, Ilias; Cruz-Gonzalez, Tizoc; Hart, A. John

    2013-01-01

    Laboratory research and development on new materials, such as nanostructured thin films, often utilizes manual equipment such as tube furnaces due to its relatively low cost and ease of setup. However, these systems can be prone to inconsistent outcomes due to variations in standard operating procedures and limitations in performance such as heating and cooling rates restrict the parameter space that can be explored. Perhaps more importantly, maximization of research throughput and the successful and efficient translation of materials processing knowledge to production-scale systems, relies on the attainment of consistent outcomes. In response to this need, we present a semi-automated lab-scale chemical vapor deposition (CVD) furnace system, called “Robofurnace.” Robofurnace is an automated CVD system built around a standard tube furnace, which automates sample insertion and removal and uses motion of the furnace to achieve rapid heating and cooling. The system has a 10-sample magazine and motorized transfer arm, which isolates the samples from the lab atmosphere and enables highly repeatable placement of the sample within the tube. The system is designed to enable continuous operation of the CVD reactor, with asynchronous loading/unloading of samples. To demonstrate its performance, Robofurnace is used to develop a rapid CVD recipe for carbon nanotube (CNT) forest growth, achieving a 10-fold improvement in CNT forest mass density compared to a benchmark recipe using a manual tube furnace. In the long run, multiple systems like Robofurnace may be linked to share data among laboratories by methods such as Twitter. Our hope is Robofurnace and like automation will enable machine learning to optimize and discover relationships in complex material synthesis processes. PMID:24289435

  13. Robofurnace: A semi-automated laboratory chemical vapor deposition system for high-throughput nanomaterial synthesis and process discovery

    SciTech Connect

    Oliver, C. Ryan; Westrick, William; Koehler, Jeremy; Brieland-Shoultz, Anna; Anagnostopoulos-Politis, Ilias; Cruz-Gonzalez, Tizoc; Hart, A. John

    2013-11-15

    Laboratory research and development on new materials, such as nanostructured thin films, often utilizes manual equipment such as tube furnaces due to its relatively low cost and ease of setup. However, these systems can be prone to inconsistent outcomes due to variations in standard operating procedures and limitations in performance such as heating and cooling rates restrict the parameter space that can be explored. Perhaps more importantly, maximization of research throughput and the successful and efficient translation of materials processing knowledge to production-scale systems, relies on the attainment of consistent outcomes. In response to this need, we present a semi-automated lab-scale chemical vapor deposition (CVD) furnace system, called “Robofurnace.” Robofurnace is an automated CVD system built around a standard tube furnace, which automates sample insertion and removal and uses motion of the furnace to achieve rapid heating and cooling. The system has a 10-sample magazine and motorized transfer arm, which isolates the samples from the lab atmosphere and enables highly repeatable placement of the sample within the tube. The system is designed to enable continuous operation of the CVD reactor, with asynchronous loading/unloading of samples. To demonstrate its performance, Robofurnace is used to develop a rapid CVD recipe for carbon nanotube (CNT) forest growth, achieving a 10-fold improvement in CNT forest mass density compared to a benchmark recipe using a manual tube furnace. In the long run, multiple systems like Robofurnace may be linked to share data among laboratories by methods such as Twitter. Our hope is Robofurnace and like automation will enable machine learning to optimize and discover relationships in complex material synthesis processes.

  14. Robofurnace: A semi-automated laboratory chemical vapor deposition system for high-throughput nanomaterial synthesis and process discovery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oliver, C. Ryan; Westrick, William; Koehler, Jeremy; Brieland-Shoultz, Anna; Anagnostopoulos-Politis, Ilias; Cruz-Gonzalez, Tizoc; Hart, A. John

    2013-11-01

    Laboratory research and development on new materials, such as nanostructured thin films, often utilizes manual equipment such as tube furnaces due to its relatively low cost and ease of setup. However, these systems can be prone to inconsistent outcomes due to variations in standard operating procedures and limitations in performance such as heating and cooling rates restrict the parameter space that can be explored. Perhaps more importantly, maximization of research throughput and the successful and efficient translation of materials processing knowledge to production-scale systems, relies on the attainment of consistent outcomes. In response to this need, we present a semi-automated lab-scale chemical vapor deposition (CVD) furnace system, called "Robofurnace." Robofurnace is an automated CVD system built around a standard tube furnace, which automates sample insertion and removal and uses motion of the furnace to achieve rapid heating and cooling. The system has a 10-sample magazine and motorized transfer arm, which isolates the samples from the lab atmosphere and enables highly repeatable placement of the sample within the tube. The system is designed to enable continuous operation of the CVD reactor, with asynchronous loading/unloading of samples. To demonstrate its performance, Robofurnace is used to develop a rapid CVD recipe for carbon nanotube (CNT) forest growth, achieving a 10-fold improvement in CNT forest mass density compared to a benchmark recipe using a manual tube furnace. In the long run, multiple systems like Robofurnace may be linked to share data among laboratories by methods such as Twitter. Our hope is Robofurnace and like automation will enable machine learning to optimize and discover relationships in complex material synthesis processes.

  15. Robofurnace: a semi-automated laboratory chemical vapor deposition system for high-throughput nanomaterial synthesis and process discovery.

    PubMed

    Oliver, C Ryan; Westrick, William; Koehler, Jeremy; Brieland-Shoultz, Anna; Anagnostopoulos-Politis, Ilias; Cruz-Gonzalez, Tizoc; Hart, A John

    2013-11-01

    Laboratory research and development on new materials, such as nanostructured thin films, often utilizes manual equipment such as tube furnaces due to its relatively low cost and ease of setup. However, these systems can be prone to inconsistent outcomes due to variations in standard operating procedures and limitations in performance such as heating and cooling rates restrict the parameter space that can be explored. Perhaps more importantly, maximization of research throughput and the successful and efficient translation of materials processing knowledge to production-scale systems, relies on the attainment of consistent outcomes. In response to this need, we present a semi-automated lab-scale chemical vapor deposition (CVD) furnace system, called "Robofurnace." Robofurnace is an automated CVD system built around a standard tube furnace, which automates sample insertion and removal and uses motion of the furnace to achieve rapid heating and cooling. The system has a 10-sample magazine and motorized transfer arm, which isolates the samples from the lab atmosphere and enables highly repeatable placement of the sample within the tube. The system is designed to enable continuous operation of the CVD reactor, with asynchronous loading∕unloading of samples. To demonstrate its performance, Robofurnace is used to develop a rapid CVD recipe for carbon nanotube (CNT) forest growth, achieving a 10-fold improvement in CNT forest mass density compared to a benchmark recipe using a manual tube furnace. In the long run, multiple systems like Robofurnace may be linked to share data among laboratories by methods such as Twitter. Our hope is Robofurnace and like automation will enable machine learning to optimize and discover relationships in complex material synthesis processes.

  16. Analysis of the juice and water losses in salted and unsalted pork samples heated in water bath. Consequences for the prediction of weight loss by transfer models.

    PubMed

    Bombrun, Laure; Gatellier, Philippe; Portanguen, Stéphane; Kondjoyan, Alain

    2015-01-01

    This study has analyzed the effect of different factors on variation of meat weight due to juice loss, and variation of water content of pork samples heated in a water bath. The weight loss (WL) was influenced by initial water content of raw meat which can be connected to meat pH, muscle type, and by pre-salting. WL was also influenced by sample thickness and by nature of the surrounding fluid. These effects were significant at 50°C and in thinner samples but decreased as meat temperature and sample thickness increased. WL showed no significant difference in response to prior freezing, applying a surface constraint during heating or varying meat salt content from 0.8 to 2.0%. The results were interpreted from literature knowledge on protein denaturation, contraction and, transport phenomena. Reliably predicting WL from water content variation during heating hinges on taking into account the loss of dry matter and the possible effects of meat pH, sample size or surrounding fluid.

  17. Power subsystem automation study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Imamura, M. S.; Moser, R. L.; Veatch, M.

    1983-01-01

    Generic power-system elements and their potential faults are identified. Automation functions and their resulting benefits are defined and automation functions between power subsystem, central spacecraft computer, and ground flight-support personnel are partitioned. All automation activities were categorized as data handling, monitoring, routine control, fault handling, planning and operations, or anomaly handling. Incorporation of all these classes of tasks, except for anomaly handling, in power subsystem hardware and software was concluded to be mandatory to meet the design and operational requirements of the space station. The key drivers are long mission lifetime, modular growth, high-performance flexibility, a need to accommodate different electrical user-load equipment, onorbit assembly/maintenance/servicing, and potentially large number of power subsystem components. A significant effort in algorithm development and validation is essential in meeting the 1987 technology readiness date for the space station.

  18. Automated telescope scheduling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnston, Mark D.

    1988-01-01

    With the ever increasing level of automation of astronomical telescopes the benefits and feasibility of automated planning and scheduling are becoming more apparent. Improved efficiency and increased overall telescope utilization are the most obvious goals. Automated scheduling at some level has been done for several satellite observatories, but the requirements on these systems were much less stringent than on modern ground or satellite observatories. The scheduling problem is particularly acute for Hubble Space Telescope: virtually all observations must be planned in excruciating detail weeks to months in advance. Space Telescope Science Institute has recently made significant progress on the scheduling problem by exploiting state-of-the-art artificial intelligence software technology. What is especially interesting is that this effort has already yielded software that is well suited to scheduling groundbased telescopes, including the problem of optimizing the coordinated scheduling of more than one telescope.

  19. Automating the CMS DAQ

    SciTech Connect

    Bauer, G.; et al.

    2014-01-01

    We present the automation mechanisms that have been added to the Data Acquisition and Run Control systems of the Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) experiment during Run 1 of the LHC, ranging from the automation of routine tasks to automatic error recovery and context-sensitive guidance to the operator. These mechanisms helped CMS to maintain a data taking efficiency above 90% and to even improve it to 95% towards the end of Run 1, despite an increase in the occurrence of single-event upsets in sub-detector electronics at high LHC luminosity.

  20. Automated Library System Specifications.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1986-06-01

    AD-A78 95 AUTOMATED LIBRARY SYSTEM SPECIFICATIONS(U) ARMY LIBRARY /i MANAGEMENT OFFICE ALEXANDRIA VA ASSISTANT CHIEF OF STAFF FOR INFORMATION... MANAGEMENT M B BONNETT JUN 86 UNCLASSIFIED F/G 9/2 NLEElIIhllEEEEE IllEEEEEllllEI .1lm lliml * ~I fI.L25 MI, [OCM RL,;OCLUTO fl. ’N k~ AUTOMATED LIBRARY...SYSTEM SPECIFICATIONS .,I Prepared by Mary B. Bonnett ARMY LIBRARY MANAGEMENT OFFICE OFFICE OF THE ASSISTANT CHIEF OF STAFF FOR INFORMATION MANAGEMENT Lij

  1. Automated gas chromatography

    DOEpatents

    Mowry, Curtis D.; Blair, Dianna S.; Rodacy, Philip J.; Reber, Stephen D.

    1999-01-01

    An apparatus and process for the continuous, near real-time monitoring of low-level concentrations of organic compounds in a liquid, and, more particularly, a water stream. A small liquid volume of flow from a liquid process stream containing organic compounds is diverted by an automated process to a heated vaporization capillary where the liquid volume is vaporized to a gas that flows to an automated gas chromatograph separation column to chromatographically separate the organic compounds. Organic compounds are detected and the information transmitted to a control system for use in process control. Concentrations of organic compounds less than one part per million are detected in less than one minute.

  2. Automated knowledge generation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Myler, Harley R.; Gonzalez, Avelino J.

    1988-01-01

    The general objectives of the NASA/UCF Automated Knowledge Generation Project were the development of an intelligent software system that could access CAD design data bases, interpret them, and generate a diagnostic knowledge base in the form of a system model. The initial area of concentration is in the diagnosis of the process control system using the Knowledge-based Autonomous Test Engineer (KATE) diagnostic system. A secondary objective was the study of general problems of automated knowledge generation. A prototype was developed, based on object-oriented language (Flavors).

  3. Automated diagnostic kiosk for diagnosing diseases

    DOEpatents

    Regan, John Frederick; Birch, James Michael

    2014-02-11

    An automated and autonomous diagnostic apparatus that is capable of dispensing collection vials and collections kits to users interesting in collecting a biological sample and submitting their collected sample contained within a collection vial into the apparatus for automated diagnostic services. The user communicates with the apparatus through a touch-screen monitor. A user is able to enter personnel information into the apparatus including medical history, insurance information, co-payment, and answer a series of questions regarding their illness, which is used to determine the assay most likely to yield a positive result. Remotely-located physicians can communicate with users of the apparatus using video tele-medicine and request specific assays to be performed. The apparatus archives submitted samples for additional testing. Users may receive their assay results electronically. Users may allow the uploading of their diagnoses into a central databank for disease surveillance purposes.

  4. Altering user' acceptance of automation through prior automation exposure.

    PubMed

    Bekier, Marek; Molesworth, Brett R C

    2016-08-22

    Air navigation service providers worldwide see increased use of automation as one solution to overcome the capacity constraints imbedded in the present air traffic management (ATM) system. However, increased use of automation within any system is dependent on user acceptance. The present research sought to determine if the point at which an individual is no longer willing to accept or cooperate with automation can be manipulated. Forty participants underwent training on a computer-based air traffic control programme, followed by two ATM exercises (order counterbalanced), one with and one without the aid of automation. Results revealed after exposure to a task with automation assistance, user acceptance of high(er) levels of automation ('tipping point') decreased; suggesting it is indeed possible to alter automation acceptance. Practitioner Summary: This paper investigates whether the point at which a user of automation rejects automation (i.e. 'tipping point') is constant or can be manipulated. The results revealed after exposure to a task with automation assistance, user acceptance of high(er) levels of automation decreased; suggesting it is possible to alter automation acceptance.

  5. Automate it: ligand-binding assay productivity in a discovery bioanalytical setting.

    PubMed

    Leung, Sheldon S; Dreher, Elizabeth A

    2013-07-01

    In multiple industries, including the biopharmaceutical industry, automation is synonymous with increased productivity. Environments with high-throughput needs commonly employ automation for efficiency. However, in a discovery bioanalytical ligand-binding assay laboratory setting where the focus is not necessarily on sample analysis throughput, but instead on assay development and characterization, is automation applicable? Can automation enhance productivity when tasks are more customized than routine? In this Perspective we review the different categories of automation with ligand-binding assays with these questions in mind. In considering whether automation technology has progressed far enough to result in a positive return in investment in the discovery setting, the resource investment required to operate in this space was contrasted with the gain in productivity. In our opinion, technology advancements in automated technology platforms, and especially personal automation, have allowed these categories to strike the right balance for investment in the discovery laboratory setting.

  6. Manual and automated reticulocyte counts.

    PubMed

    Simionatto, Mackelly; de Paula, Josiane Padilha; Chaves, Michele Ana Flores; Bortoloso, Márcia; Cicchetti, Domenic; Leonart, Maria Suely Soares; do Nascimento, Aguinaldo José

    2010-12-01

    Manual reticulocyte counts were examined under light microscopy, using the property whereby supravital stain precipitates residual ribosomal RNA versus the automated flow methods, with the suggestion that in the latter there is greater precision and an ability to determine both mature and immature reticulocyte fractions. Three hundred and forty-one venous blood samples of patients were analyzed of whom 224 newborn and the rest adults; 51 males and 66 females, with ages between 0 and 89 years, as part of the laboratory routine for hematological examinations at the Clinical Laboratory of the Hospital Universitário do Oeste do Paraná. This work aimed to compare manual and automated methodologies for reticulocyte countings and evaluate random and systematic errors. The results obtained showed that the difference between the two methods was very small, with an estimated 0·4% systematic error and 3·9% random error. Thus, it has been confirmed that both methods, when well conducted, can reflect precisely the reticulocyte counts for adequate clinical use.

  7. Automated screening for biological weapons in homeland defense.

    PubMed

    Emanuel, Peter A; Fruchey, Isaac R; Bailey, Andrew M; Dang, Jessica L; Niyogi, Kakoli; Roos, Jason W; Cullin, David; Emanuel, Diana C

    2005-01-01

    Biological threat detection programs that collect air samples and monitor for large-scale release of biowarfare agents generate large numbers of samples that must be quickly and accurately screened for the presence of biological agents. An impediment to the rapid analysis of large numbers of environmental biological samples is that manual laboratory processes are time-consuming and require resources to maintain infrastructure, trained personnel, and adequate supplies of testing reagents. An ideal screening system would be capable of processing multiple samples rapidly, cost-effectively, and with minimal personnel. In the present study, we evaluated the Automated Biological Agent Testing System (ABATS) to explore the capability of automation to increase sample throughput, maximize system accuracy, and reduce the analysis costs associated with biological threat agent screening in environmental samples. This study demonstrates the utility of this concept and the potential of an automated system to address the growing environmental monitoring needs of the United States.

  8. Revisiting the fission track method for the analysis of particles in safeguards environmental samples.

    PubMed

    Dzigal, N; Chinea-Cano, E; Walsh, S; Limbeck, A

    2017-05-15

    This paper details an improved approach to environmental particle analysis for safeguards by means of a combination of an upgraded version of the so-called fission track method with state-of-the-art microscope and microprobe techniques. Improvements to the fission track method comprise a novel sample assembly, the automation of several of its steps and the extensive use of correlative microscopy. This is followed by an automated isolation of particles-of-interest by means of laser micro-dissection (LMD) and their collection onto a harvester for transfer to other micro-analytical instruments for further analysis. The samples examined in this contribution were analysed for their nuclear material signatures, in particular the presence of uranium isotopes. The length of a single analysis cycle herewith was reduced to 12 days.

  9. Automating Small Libraries.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Swan, James

    1996-01-01

    Presents a four-phase plan for small libraries strategizing for automation: inventory and weeding, data conversion, implementation, and enhancements. Other topics include selecting a system, MARC records, compatibility, ease of use, industry standards, searching capabilities, support services, system security, screen displays, circulation modules,…

  10. Automated conflict resolution issues

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wike, Jeffrey S.

    1991-01-01

    A discussion is presented of how conflicts for Space Network resources should be resolved in the ATDRSS era. The following topics are presented: a description of how resource conflicts are currently resolved; a description of issues associated with automated conflict resolution; present conflict resolution strategies; and topics for further discussion.

  11. Automated Accounting. Instructor Guide.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moses, Duane R.

    This curriculum guide was developed to assist business instructors using Dac Easy Accounting College Edition Version 2.0 software in their accounting programs. The module consists of four units containing assignment sheets and job sheets designed to enable students to master competencies identified in the area of automated accounting. The first…

  12. Automated Student Model Improvement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Koedinger, Kenneth R.; McLaughlin, Elizabeth A.; Stamper, John C.

    2012-01-01

    Student modeling plays a critical role in developing and improving instruction and instructional technologies. We present a technique for automated improvement of student models that leverages the DataShop repository, crowd sourcing, and a version of the Learning Factors Analysis algorithm. We demonstrate this method on eleven educational…

  13. Personnel Department Automation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilkinson, David

    In 1989, the Austin Independent School District's Office of Research and Evaluation was directed to monitor the automation of personnel information and processes in the district's Department of Personnel. Earlier, a study committee appointed by the Superintendent during the 1988-89 school year identified issues related to Personnel Department…

  14. Validating Automated Speaking Tests

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bernstein, Jared; Van Moere, Alistair; Cheng, Jian

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents evidence that supports the valid use of scores from fully automatic tests of spoken language ability to indicate a person's effectiveness in spoken communication. The paper reviews the constructs, scoring, and the concurrent validity evidence of "facility-in-L2" tests, a family of automated spoken language tests in Spanish,…

  15. Automated Essay Scoring

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dikli, Semire

    2006-01-01

    The impacts of computers on writing have been widely studied for three decades. Even basic computers functions, i.e. word processing, have been of great assistance to writers in modifying their essays. The research on Automated Essay Scoring (AES) has revealed that computers have the capacity to function as a more effective cognitive tool (Attali,…

  16. Automated Microbial Genome Annotation

    SciTech Connect

    Land, Miriam

    2009-05-29

    Miriam Land of the DOE Joint Genome Institute at Oak Ridge National Laboratory gives a talk on the current state and future challenges of moving toward automated microbial genome annotation at the "Sequencing, Finishing, Analysis in the Future" meeting in Santa Fe, NM

  17. Automated Administrative Data Bases

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Marrie, M. D.; Jarrett, J. R.; Reising, S. A.; Hodge, J. E.

    1984-01-01

    Improved productivity and more effective response to information requirements for internal management, NASA Centers, and Headquarters resulted from using automated techniques. Modules developed to provide information on manpower, RTOPS, full time equivalency, and physical space reduced duplication, increased communication, and saved time. There is potential for greater savings by sharing and integrating with those who have the same requirements.

  18. Automated Management Of Documents

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Boy, Guy

    1995-01-01

    Report presents main technical issues involved in computer-integrated documentation. Problems associated with automation of management and maintenance of documents analyzed from perspectives of artificial intelligence and human factors. Technologies that may prove useful in computer-integrated documentation reviewed: these include conventional approaches to indexing and retrieval of information, use of hypertext, and knowledge-based artificial-intelligence systems.

  19. Building Automation Systems.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Honeywell, Inc., Minneapolis, Minn.

    A number of different automation systems for use in monitoring and controlling building equipment are described in this brochure. The system functions include--(1) collection of information, (2) processing and display of data at a central panel, and (3) taking corrective action by sounding alarms, making adjustments, or automatically starting and…

  20. Guide to Library Automation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Toohill, Barbara G.

    Directed toward librarians and library administrators who wish to procure automated systems or services for their libraries, this guide offers practical suggestions, advice, and methods for determining requirements, estimating costs and benefits, writing specifications procuring systems, negotiating contracts, and installing systems. The advice…