Press Releases

Picarro Announces New Field-Ready, Ultra-Sensitive Trace Gas Measurement Instrument

Sunnyvale, Calif., September 1, 2005 - Picarro, Inc., a provider of lasers and laser-based solutions for life science, environmental and industrial process monitoring applications announced today the introduction of the ESP-1000 for ultra-sensitive trace gas measurement. The ESP-1000 is the first commercially available product that captures the full benefits of a revolutionary technology called Cavity Ring Down Spectroscopy and promises to set a new standard for trace gas measurement.

The ESP-1000 offers a unique combination of high sensitivity and selectivity, high speed, and low operating cost when compared with traditional techniques such as gas chromatography, mass spectroscopy, and various optical spectroscopy methods. Excelling at the most demanding trace gas measurements, the ESP- 1000 achieves part-per-billion sensitivity without extensive sample preparation or user interaction and is ideal for field measurements. Current applications for the ESP-1000 include semiconductor manufacturing, petrochemical refining, environmental monitoring, and diesel emissions analysis. The ESP-1000's ability to make sensitive, real-time field measurements also has the potential to create new trace gas applications. For example the instrument is currently measuring stable carbon isotopes for oil exploration and breath diagnostics.

The ESP-1000 is based on a novel spectroscopic technique known as Cavity Ring Down Spectroscopy (CRDS). CRDS is a high-resolution laser absorption technique that uses a unique measurement cell to achieve an optical path length thousands of times longer than the physical length of the cell. This path length multiplication effect is the key to achieving part-per-billion sensitivity levels. The ESP-1000 contains proprietary control of wavelength, temperature, and pressure as well as sophisticated spectral analysis algorithms to achieve sensitive and accurate measurements that are stable over long periods of time. Special design consideration was given to sample handling, thermal control, vibration isolation, and packaging to insure rugged, reliable performance when deployed in the field. Further reliability and durability are achieved by selecting only highly reliable components and employing manufacturing processes adapted from the telecommunications industry.

The ESP-1000 has successfully measured ammonia, hydrogen sulfide, acetylene, carbon dioxide, ethylene, arsine, silane, and stable isotopes of carbon and hydrogen. The ESP-1000 will be featured by Picarro at the annual conference of the Federation of Analytical Chemistry & Spectroscopy Societies (FACSS), in Quebec City, Oct. 9-13 ,2005.