Intelligent Design Eliminates Potential Cross-Contamination in Gas Sorption Instruments

Intelligent design of vacuum systems permits the optimization of instrument performance and cost of on-board outgassing instruments. Potential sources of sample contamination and crosscontamination are reliably and consistently eliminated through the use of modern and patented vacuum system features. Standard features that ensure the absence of cross-contamination in gas sorption instruments designed with on-board outgassing units are described and include providing equivalent outgassing levels during sample treatment and analysis and achieving significant savings in equipment cost, bench space, and maintenance functions


Proper sample degassing is an essential component of high-quality gas sorption analyses. The goal of sample degassing is to remove contaminants, mainly moisture and hydrocarbons, from solid surfaces prior to their analysis (Figure 1). Contaminants present during analyses could otherwise affect the access of adsorbents to the surface and pores of the solid. Degassing can be accomplished using flow or vacuum methods. This report focuses on instrument design aspects necessary to eliminate the potential for sample contamination and cross-contamination during on-board vacuum degassing.

Vacuum Degassing Modes and Sources of Sample Contamination

Samples can be vacuum degassed in three modes:

  1. Off-line, in independent degassing units
  2. In-situ, by degassing the sample in the analysis station itself
  3. On-board, sharing a common vacuum system for separate degassing and analysis

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