As our standard of living increases, we also pay greater attention to what goes into various products, foodstuffs and pharmaceuticals. This is of particular interest to pharmacies using active ingredients in the form of powders, oils or ointments. To prevent mistakes (e.g. low-quality Chinese products), testing is extremely important. However, it used to be very expensive and time consuming. Apo-Ident produced by HiperScan (www.hiperscan.com) is now revolutionising analysis. Innovative near infrared (NIR) spectroscopy enables faster and more reliable identification and the cost-effective technology also makes such analysis affordable for smaller companies.
Together with the Fraunhofer Institute for Photonic Microsystems (IPMS), the CTR experts developed the basis for Apo-Ident, HiperScan’s successful product. As a result, users can replace costly individual chemical analysis with a beam of light as it were. At the core of the Apo-Ident is an MEMS chip. The microsystems engineering experts at CTR turned it into the SGS1900 (NIR photospectrometer). It operates with an uncooled InGaAs detector in the range from 1000 nm to 1900 nm. This means it goes beyond the typical restricted range up to 1700 nm. Other excellent features are its compactness, sensitivity and fast testing times. Small, rugged and very good value for money, the SGS1900 is therefore ideal for online analysis and as an OEM component. Analysis functions can also be integrated in the device for use as a smart sensor. It is then capable, for example, of determining water, fat or protein content.
CTR developed the complete measurement system based on the IPMS micro-scanning mirror. This included the optical design, system design simulations, electronics and developing a prototype. The wavelength range was also extended. CTR’s expertise was particularly valuable in the area of system development and SGS spectrometer design.
Apo-Ident is an analyser for pharmacies that uses near infrared light to analyse and identify the composition of substances - such as drugs or foodstuffs - in less than two minutes. In 2011, the development was ranked among the top ten in the Optical Technologies category at the German Industry Awards.