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Fabrication of an Optical Cell Dryer for the Spectroscopic Analysis Cells

Published: January 8th, 2019



1Department of Physics, Graduate School of Science, Tokyo University of Science

A protocol for fabricating a device for simultaneously drying multiple optical cells is presented.

Optical cells, which are experimental instruments, are small, square tubes sealed on one side. A sample is placed in this tube, and a measurement is performed with a spectroscope. The materials used for optical cells generally include quartz glass or plastic, but expensive quartz glass is reused by removing substances, other than liquids, to be analyzed that adhere to the interior of the container. In such a case, the optical cells are washed with water or ethanol and dried. Then, the next sample is added and measured. Optical cells are dried naturally or with a manual hairdryer. However, drying takes time, which makes it one of the factors that increase the experiment time. In this study, the objective is to drastically reduce the drying time with a dedicated automatic dryer that can dry multiple optical cells at once. To realize this, a circuit was designed for a microcomputer, and the hardware using it was independently designed and manufactured.

Optical cells are used as laboratory instruments in a wide range of fields. In life science research, biomolecules such as nucleic acids and proteins are often utilized for experiments, and spectroscopic methods are widely used for quantitative methods. Accurately quantifying the sample of the experiment is indispensable for obtaining more accurate and reproducible results. The absorption spectrum obtained by a spectrophotometer has often been used for the quantification of biomolecules such as nucleic acids and proteins1,2,3,4. Research on ....

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1. Design

  1. See Figure 1 for details of the development drawing.
  2. Cut a 3-mm thick acrylic board to 210 mm in width x 60 mm in height x 104 mm in depth, bond with acrylic adhesive and assemble the case.
  3. Install as many as 30 optical cells of 12.5 x 12.5 mm.
  4. Attach switches and lamps for starting and stopping and a variable dial for the drying time setting on the front face of the casing.
  5. See Figure 2 for an extern.......

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As shown in Table 1, in the case of ethanol washing, the average drying time in natural drying was 426.4 s, and the average drying time in the optical-cell dryer was 106 s. In the case of water washing, the average drying time in natural drying was 1481.4 s, and the average drying time in the optical-cell dryer was 371.6 s. In both cases, the drying time was reduced to approximately one-fourth. The drying time distribution of the optical-cell dryer is shown in

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The optical cells can be dried simultaneously with the blowers, and the drying time can be considerably reduced. Even if the stop operation is not executed, it can be safely stopped by using the automatic stop function of the timer. From the measurement results of the drying time distribution, there was no significant difference in drying time because of the difference in the installation position of the optical cells.

A critical step of the protocol is the design of the casing. The challenge .......

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The authors have no acknowledgments.


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Name Company Catalog Number Comments
blower ebm-papst 422JN Mulfingen, Germany
Microcomputer Atmel Corporation ATmega 328 P CA, USA
Blower selection button Sengoku Densyo Co., Ltd. MS-358 (red) Tokyo, Japan
Blower operationg lamp Akizuki Denshi Tsusho Co., Ltd. DB-15-T-OR Tokyo, Japan
Blower start button Sengoku Densyo Co., Ltd. MS-350M (white) Tokyo, Japan
Timer Akizuki Denshi Tsusho Co., Ltd. SH16K4A105L20KC Tokyo, Japan
Power supply switch Marutsuelec Co., Ltd. 3010-P3C1T1G2C01B02BKBK-EI Tokyo, Japan
Power supply lamp Akizuki Denshi Tsusho Co., Ltd. DB-15-T-G Tokyo, Japan
OLED module Akihabara Co., Ltd. M096P4W Tokyo, Japan

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