Hardware control

The HPLC software ChromStar for data acquisition and quantitative analysis can control one or several HPLC instruments like pumps, detectors, autosamplers, switching valves etc, either directly via the serial interface or, if you need to control more than one instrument, via an interface box. Like pumps, detectors, autosampler, control valve and column sample valve etc.


Hardware control with ChromStar

Pump control


Except ChromStar Integrator, all other versions can control 1 to 4, and when equipped with 2 interface boxes, even up to 8 SunChrom HPLC pumps, model SunFlow 100. Every box is then connected to a serial interface. The intelligent interface with own microprocessor and power supply manages all connected instruments independently from the PC after a download when starting. The pumps are connected in a so-called “daisy chain” to the interface and each to another. You can so create up to quaternary high-pressure gradients.

SunChrom micro/nano HPLC pump MicroPro™

An own special software controls the micro/nano HPLC pump MicroPro. This software is so deeply connected to ChromStar that starting a gradient program automatically and directly starts ChromStar with the data acquisition. The control of MicroPro is described in detail under micro/nano HPLC.

Autosampler control

All Spark autosamplers can be controlled conveniently and more sophisticated by ChromStar. This control includes the basic commands such as sample position, number of injections of every sample, analysis time and injection volume. These information are mostly sufficient to make a successful analysis if no additional performance features of the autosampler required, such as automatic sample preparation, microlitre pick-up, direct control (user program), derivatisation etc.

Special autosampler control

High-class and high-performance autosampler like MIDAS™, TRIATHLON™ and ENDURANCE™ can do much more than only injecting samples. There is software appropriate to these special performances. In this case the control is not operated by an interface but by a direct RS232 control. Below you may find an example of the control software for ENDURANCE™.

Firstly the sample rack can be visualised. It facilitates the acquaintance to the auto-sampler. Further on you can assign individual conditions regarding sample handling, injection and chromatographic separation to all samples. Also a “step-by-step” programming is possible even for inexperienced users. This opens new alternatives in sample handling and is without any difficulty possible with other autosamplers. Figure top right shows how to inject on a nano column of 75 µm inner diameter as low as 10 nl sample depending on the flow rate.

All autosampler controls enable, beside the operation with ChromStar, also an interfacing to HP ChemStation.

Instruments control with PrepCon
Originally PrepCon was a data acquisition and instrument control system for the preparative chromatography to control pumps, valves, data acquisition and fractioning. In the meantime, due to constant developments, PrepCon has grown up to an all-purpose pump and valve control program that can be used in the analytical, semi-preparative and preparative chromatography. The program enables isocratic elution of up to 4 solvents, but also gradient programming and developing, time control of switching valves, start of the data acquisition program ChromStar, etc.

The program window on the monitor shows the status of the pump and the positions of the valve. Monitor keys enable to operate pumps and valves automatically. In a fraction module you can generate the switching of a valve depending on the peak. This valve is responsible for fraction collection. The program incorporates also a peak detection.

The complete sequence is visualised on the monitor and each active step is shown in a timetable. During the sequence of a preparative separation you can adapt the switching times of the valves and of the pump via a graphic editor that shows the respective chromatogram.

The sequence programming can be made as well in time units, in volume units of the forwarded solvent as well as in column volume units.