How is a Quikchem® Lachat system run with multiple Autosamplers?

Document ID

Document ID TE5098

Version

Version 2.0

Status

Status Published

Published Date

Published Date 27/05/2017
Question
How is a Quikchem® Lachat system run with multiple Autosamplers?
Summary
Set up of virtual instruments to accommodate more than one sampler
Answer
Defining the Virtual Instruments
This is performed by creating virtual instruments. Virtual instruments are additional channels on the same instrument which can be run separately. The most common reason to do this is to handle multiple samplers.  In this example a two channel instrument will be defined as two virtual instruments. The first channel will be for ammonia. The second channel will be for cyanide. 
 
This is defined in Configuration...Instruments....Detectors/Valves tab. For the first instrument set the number of channels to 1 with the slider bar under Number of Channels. Assuming a normal set up this will result in Virtual Instrument 1 using the first channel. Make sure to set the valves and detectors by selecting the boxes labelled 1 on the right hand side of the window. These may already be selected. For some older instruments these boxes may be labelled as A/D Channels Available (detectors) and Control Bits Available (valves). Also select the heater 1 Controller box on the right hand side of the Heaters tab if the channel uses a heater. If the correct selections have been made you will see the channel numbers referenced in the Detector, Valve and Heater (if a heated channel) boxes within the Channel Properties area on the lower left hand side. They will be referenced as A1. Finally, name the instrument “Ammonia” within the Name field from either tab. This will name the first virtual instrument ammonia and this reference will help later on when selecting the instrument used.  After entering these settings press the Accept button. The virtual instrument #1 has now been defined.

 
 
Next, select instrument 2 on the upper left hand side to define the second virtual instrument. Set the number of channels to 1 with the slider bar under Number of Channels. Define Channel 1 on this second instrument to use Valve 2 and detector 2 by selecting the boxes labelled 2 on the right hand side as described for channel 1 above.
Make sure to also go to the heaters tab to define a heater if the channel uses a heater. The components will be references as A2 within the Channel Properties area on the lower left hand side. Name the instrument cyanide to easily reference later. After entering these settings press the Accept button. The virtual instrument #2 has now been defined.
 
 
When working within the Omnion software both of these tests will be performed on Channel 1. However in this example, Cyanide will be using the valve, detector and heater on channel 2.
 

 
Defining the Autosamplers
If multiple virtual instruments are being defined so that the Quikchem® system can be run with multiple Autosamplers, the additional Autosamplers will also need to be defined. These are defined in Configuration....Autosamplers. Within this window there are four tabs allowing up to four Autosamplers to be defined. Additional Autosamplers are defined in the exact same way as the first Autosampler.
Working with the Omnion run files
When creating run files for both of these tests the channel being run is channel 1. Even though the cyanide is actually running on the physical channel 2, it is the first channel (or channel 1) of virtual instrument 2. Within each of these run files, the instrument and Autosampler being used must be defined. This is done in the Run tab of the Run properties window. The default will be instrument 1 and Autosampler 1. Selecting the arrow on the right hand side of either field will bring up a drop down menu with the instrument or Autosampler choices.

 
 
Using the Virtual Instruments
Omnion allows up to four run files to be opened at a time. The first run opened will appear in Run1, the second run opened will appear in Run2, etc. By selecting the Run buttons at the top of the Omnion window it is possible to switch back and forth between the runs. To continue this example, an Ammonia run file was opened first and is present within Run1. Opening a cyanide run file will open it in Run2.  In addition to viewing the files in each of these instances runs can also be started or previewed. This is allows two files to be opened and run at the same time.