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Science  17 Nov 2017:
Vol. 358, Issue 6365, pp. 955
DOI: 10.1126/science.358.6365.955

Handheld Photometer

NECi Superior Enzymes introduces a handheld photometer that interfaces with Android mobile devices using a wireless Bluetooth connection. The new photometer determines the amount of nitrate or phosphate by measuring the light passed through the sample, following a simple enzymatic reaction. Fertilizers rich in nitrate and phosphate increase crop yield and ensure food security; but when excess nutrients migrate from agricultural fields and accumulate in local watersheds, valuable crop nutrients are wasted, contributing to harmful algal blooms and causing unmanageable levels of nitrate at drinking-water processing plants. NECi's enzyme-based photometer furnishes accurate data anywhere on-site, with no laboratory required. Unlike other handheld photometers, NECi's instrument features a true "optical bench" that measures light through cuvettes—mimicking a laboratory-grade spectrophotometer. The enzymatic reaction is easy to perform, completely nontoxic, and produces reliable data for agriculture, citizen monitoring, education, environmental analysis, regulatory monitoring, and more.

FTIR Spectrometers

The ALPHA II compact Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectrometer features fully automated test routines for validating operational qualification and performance as well as innovations in temperature-stabilized detection and high-quality, IR-source technology. The instrument also has an optional, industrial-grade touch panel PC and OPUS-TOUCH touchscreen software for easy and highly intuitive use, which includes built-in routine application workflows. It is equipped with Bruker's CenterGlow IR-source technology, guaranteeing consistently high intensity and a lifetime of at least 5 years. Due to its wide range of plug-and-play QuickSnap sampling modules, the ALPHA II can be adopted to almost any measurement scenario. The extended capabilities of the OPUS software are available for more advanced applications, and are compatible with Bruker's complete FTIR, FT near-infrared, and Raman product portfolio.

CMOS Camera

KURO is the world's first scientific complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) camera system to implement back-illuminated sensor technology. Until now, this key technology has been leveraged almost exclusively by charge-coupled device camera systems, which, despite their excellent sensitivity, are unable to match CMOS frame rates. Front-illuminated CMOS cameras, meanwhile, cannot meet the high-sensitivity requirements of today's ultralow-light scientific imaging and spectroscopy applications. The KURO camera, however, delivers both the fast frame rates and exceptional sensitivity needed for applications such as hyperspectral imaging, astronomy, cold-atom imaging, quantum imaging, fluorescence spectroscopy, and high-speed spectroscopy, while eliminating the drawbacks commonly associated with conventional CMOS cameras.

High Brightness Monochromator

The McPherson Model 207A is a 670-mm focal length, optically fast f/4.7 monochromator. Off-axis parabolic (OAP) mirrors provide both low f/number and stigmatic monochromator performance. The OAP optics feature coincident sagittal and tangential foci and perfect collimation and focusing, and the highly polished OAP mirrors with smooth surfaces are especially suitable for work in the deep-UV and vacuum regions. The 207A preserves high brightness with no chromatic aberrations. Other features include Snap-In diffraction gratings optimized for spectral resolution and/or wavelength-range coverage. For charge-coupled devices, there is an accessible 50-mm-wide focal plane, and precise, durable slits for coupling free-space or fiber optic signals. Researchers needing versatile high brightness as a tunable light source for diagnostic or analytical spectroscopy in the life sciences use Model 207A.

Handheld Spectroscopic Analyzer 

The KT-100 Katana, a laser-induced breakdown spectroscopic (LIBS) handheld analyzer, provides a new and improved way to identify elemental composition for both heavy and light alloying elements in metals. Primary uses include scrap metal sorting, quality assurance in metal fabrication, and positive material identification in petrochemical operations. The unit includes powerful QuickID software, allowing identification of even the most difficult alloys in less than two seconds—at the pull of the trigger. The KT-100's proprietary Breakthrough Laser Ablation & Detection Engine (BLADE) technology makes it the smallest and lightest handheld LIBS available on the market. Its Drill Down feature rapidly prepares samples by removing contaminants that can affect positive metal identification. With an extended battery life, the KT-100 is also less susceptible to fatigue and downtime, which is critical for on- and off-site operations. The GPS and macro camera allow for instrument and sample tracking.

Quadrupole Mass Spectrometer

The degree of retention of hydrogen and helium in metals is very important in diverse applications, including hydrogen-embrittlement quantification, tritium retention measurement in fusion reactor wall tiles, and solar panel quality control. The Hiden Temperature Programmed Desorption (TPD) Workstation was developed specifically for such applications by providing measurement at ultra-high vacuum (UHV) conditions, with integrated analysis and quantification of desorbed gases by quadrupole mass spectrometry. Sample heating is performed by a fully programmable temperature regime operating from 50°C to 1,000°C. Sample specimens are typically disk segments of 1–2 sq. cm area; and the vacuum sample load lock permits sample placement and replacement without loss of UHV vacuum integrity. The Hiden quadrupole mass spectrometer probe is mounted directly above the sample surface to optimize desorbed gas detection, its fast digital detection system providing accurate data recording through rapid gas-evolution events. A water-cooled shroud prevents radiant heating of the quadrupole probe structure.

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