CASE STUDY: CUSTOM SYRINGE AND AIR DISPLACEMENT PUMP
- Pump for automated liquid handling application
- Lab prototype development of compact and low-cost metering pumps
- Custom Brushless and brush DC servo motor drives
- Custom encoder solution
- Final production units to be die-cast aluminum and injection molded plastic parts
The recent growth in point-of-care diagnostic testing has sparked innovation in the automated liquid handling sector. When assay developers begin to define their chemistry work flow, they must decide whether to use a generic, off-the-shelf liquid handling robot or create a custom automated platform. For example, companies that are developing lab-on-a-chip assays or custom cartridges for mid-volume instruments often choose custom liquid handling solutions based on cost constraints, package size considerations, and the need to meet specific performance requirements. Companies developing such custom liquid handling solutions turn to Simplexity as their partner.
The pump is an essential element of an automated liquid handling robot, and Simplexity has developed custom syringe and air displacement pumps in which the engineering cost was more than offset by the resulting savings and miniaturization. Simplexity-designed custom pumps typically cost about 1/8th as much as a generic pump. Additionally, Simplexity can add special functionality either not found in generic liquid handling robots or that would otherwise be excessively expensive.
A Fortune 50 Life Science company approached Simplexity with the need to develop a syringe pump-driven, 8-up liquid handler to displace fluids on standard well plates. Unlike other solutions that use stepper motors, the Simplexity design used a closed-loop servo drive system. The client needed both liquid level and bubble detection. As part of the sensor packaging development, we accomplished liquid level detection using a capacitive sensor and bubble detection through a pressure sensor.