A Tiny Droplet in the Right Place



Automated pipetting of substances at Xenon Automatisierungstechnik GmbH in Dresden


A tiny droplet in the right place

Application: Dosing & gripping
Customer: Xenon Automatisierungstechnik GmbH
Product: Cartridges for in-vitro diagnostics
Industry:: Medical/Pharmaceutical
Epson robot:: Epson SCARA robot – clean room version

 

Initial situation/task

Only a tiny droplet, and exactly in the right place to boot. To meet this requirement during the automated pipetting of substances, a dosing needle must be positioned accurately, even if the target cannot yet be defined exactly. In addition, it must be possible to implement such a task effectively and affordably.

The Dresden-based machine construction company Xenon, which specialises in assembly, testing and automated packaging systems, developed a mechanical platform with an Epson SCARA clean room robot specifically for this purpose. This platform only claims little more space than one square metre, a definite advantage, because floor space in laboratory environments is also expensive.
 

Solution

The SCARA clean room robot carries a mobile camera that can inspect the different areas and makes it possible to correct positions. Even if the target part is not always positioned in exactly the same place, the camera work makes it possible to move to dosing or gripping positions accurately. A second camera carries out quality controls. It checks whether the filled drop is in the correct position and has the required size.

Input and output of the capillaries are flexible. The Epson SCARA robot puts the filled capillaries e.g. on a sample carrier, installs them in a disposable cartridge or deposits them for shock freezing into an integrated Dewar vessel in liquid nitrogen. Handling, dispensing and QC functions of the pipetting platform can be combined with each other and programmed in various sequences, which makes it possible to adjust to new tasks and products at any time.

For the production of such medicinal products, it is indispensable that relevant batch-related data, like e. g. capillary diameter or drop size and the appertaining camera images can be recorded and archived.
 

Benefits at a glance:

  • Repeat accuracy even when filling smallest quantities
  • Flexible system: from small batch sizes to series production
  • Efficient multiple use of the cell for new tasks and products