The field of gas sensor technology is broad. One widespread application is the breath alcohol test, in which the alcohol content in the breath is measured. But gas sensor technology is also used in the search for explosives and drugs at the airport. Here, microfluidics helps making the tests more accurate and faster.
A major problem in gas sensing is getting a sufficient supply of the gas to be tested to the sensor. A sensor does not fill well on its own, and changes in the gas take a long time to show up. In addition, the concentration of the various components in the air is usually not uniform. The mp6 micropump enables active addition of new air and extraction of old air. Thus, the sensor is regularly supplied with a new sample and can display a more accurate result.
Active gas sensor technology with micropumps is can be used to measure the CO2 concentration. With the demand for higher safety and efficiency in industrial processes, the use of sensors is continuously increasing. In order to produce stable and defined measured values in these processes, the ambient conditions of the sensor must be kept at a constant level.
This case study uses the example of CO2 sensors to show how the mp6 micropump can be used in the field of sensor technology.
At our customer Kühner AG, the mp6 micropump is used in the “Kühner TOM” analysis unit. This unit measures oxygen transfer rate (OTR), carbon dioxide transfer rate (CTR) and respiratory quotient (RQ) in up to 16 independent shake flasks simultaneously. This analysis by gas sensors enables a better understanding of cultivation processes and efficient and rational process development.
The system enables cell growth analysis through gas sensing. Here, the mp6 micropump provides the supply of fresh air needed during cell growth. In addition, the mp6 extracts the used air at the bioreactor and guides it to the necessary sensors. All this happens in the smallest space possible.