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Automated sample-changing robot for solution scattering experiments at the EMBL Hamburg SAXS station X33.

Round AR, Franke D, Moritz S, Huchler R, Fritsche M, Malthan D, Klaering R, Svergun DI, Roessle M - J Appl Crystallogr (2008)

Bottom Line: At X33, a throughput of approximately 12 samples per hour, with a failure rate of sample loading of less than 0.5%, was observed.The feedback from users indicates that the ease of use and reliability of the user operation at the beamline were greatly improved compared with the manual filling mode.Full integration with the beamline control software, allowing for automated data collection of all samples loaded into the machine with remote control from the user, is presently being implemented.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: EMBL Hamburg, Building 25a, Notkestrasse 85, 22603 Hamburg, Germany.

ABSTRACT
There is a rapidly increasing interest in the use of synchrotron small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) for large-scale studies of biological macromolecules in solution, and this requires an adequate means of automating the experiment. A prototype has been developed of an automated sample changer for solution SAXS, where the solutions are kept in thermostatically controlled well plates allowing for operation with up to 192 samples. The measuring protocol involves controlled loading of protein solutions and matching buffers, followed by cleaning and drying of the cell between measurements. The system was installed and tested at the X33 beamline of the EMBL, at the storage ring DORIS-III (DESY, Hamburg), where it was used by over 50 external groups during 2007. At X33, a throughput of approximately 12 samples per hour, with a failure rate of sample loading of less than 0.5%, was observed. The feedback from users indicates that the ease of use and reliability of the user operation at the beamline were greatly improved compared with the manual filling mode. The changer is controlled by a client-server-based network protocol, locally and remotely. During the testing phase, the changer was operated in an attended mode to assess its reliability and convenience. Full integration with the beamline control software, allowing for automated data collection of all samples loaded into the machine with remote control from the user, is presently being implemented. The approach reported is not limited to synchrotron-based SAXS but can also be used on laboratory and neutron sources.

No MeSH data available.


Screenshot of the graphical user interface during user operation
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fig3: Screenshot of the graphical user interface during user operation

Mentions: The prototype has been mounted on a guide rail with wheels and can be easily disconnected from the vacuum cell and moved out of the operational position by a single person. This allows for a quick changeover to a manual filling mode for special liquids, e.g. those with high viscosity. The prototype is equipped with an integrated (touchscreen) computer (Fig. 1 ▶a), which allows for direct local control through the graphical user interface (GUI) (Fig. 3 ▶).


Automated sample-changing robot for solution scattering experiments at the EMBL Hamburg SAXS station X33.

Round AR, Franke D, Moritz S, Huchler R, Fritsche M, Malthan D, Klaering R, Svergun DI, Roessle M - J Appl Crystallogr (2008)

Screenshot of the graphical user interface during user operation
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4233401&req=5

fig3: Screenshot of the graphical user interface during user operation
Mentions: The prototype has been mounted on a guide rail with wheels and can be easily disconnected from the vacuum cell and moved out of the operational position by a single person. This allows for a quick changeover to a manual filling mode for special liquids, e.g. those with high viscosity. The prototype is equipped with an integrated (touchscreen) computer (Fig. 1 ▶a), which allows for direct local control through the graphical user interface (GUI) (Fig. 3 ▶).

Bottom Line: At X33, a throughput of approximately 12 samples per hour, with a failure rate of sample loading of less than 0.5%, was observed.The feedback from users indicates that the ease of use and reliability of the user operation at the beamline were greatly improved compared with the manual filling mode.Full integration with the beamline control software, allowing for automated data collection of all samples loaded into the machine with remote control from the user, is presently being implemented.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: EMBL Hamburg, Building 25a, Notkestrasse 85, 22603 Hamburg, Germany.

ABSTRACT
There is a rapidly increasing interest in the use of synchrotron small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) for large-scale studies of biological macromolecules in solution, and this requires an adequate means of automating the experiment. A prototype has been developed of an automated sample changer for solution SAXS, where the solutions are kept in thermostatically controlled well plates allowing for operation with up to 192 samples. The measuring protocol involves controlled loading of protein solutions and matching buffers, followed by cleaning and drying of the cell between measurements. The system was installed and tested at the X33 beamline of the EMBL, at the storage ring DORIS-III (DESY, Hamburg), where it was used by over 50 external groups during 2007. At X33, a throughput of approximately 12 samples per hour, with a failure rate of sample loading of less than 0.5%, was observed. The feedback from users indicates that the ease of use and reliability of the user operation at the beamline were greatly improved compared with the manual filling mode. The changer is controlled by a client-server-based network protocol, locally and remotely. During the testing phase, the changer was operated in an attended mode to assess its reliability and convenience. Full integration with the beamline control software, allowing for automated data collection of all samples loaded into the machine with remote control from the user, is presently being implemented. The approach reported is not limited to synchrotron-based SAXS but can also be used on laboratory and neutron sources.

No MeSH data available.