JP4178122B2 - Dispensing device and automatic analyzer equipped with the same - Google Patents

Dispensing device and automatic analyzer equipped with the same Download PDF

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JP4178122B2
JP4178122B2 JP2004090802A JP2004090802A JP4178122B2 JP 4178122 B2 JP4178122 B2 JP 4178122B2 JP 2004090802 A JP2004090802 A JP 2004090802A JP 2004090802 A JP2004090802 A JP 2004090802A JP 4178122 B2 JP4178122 B2 JP 4178122B2
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明大 島瀬
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本発明は所定量の液体の試料や試薬をある容器から別の容器へ吸引・吐出(以下、分注と称する)する分注装置及びそれを備えた自動分析装置に係り、特に液体流路内に圧力センサを備えた分注装置、及びそれを備えた自動分析装置に関する。   The present invention relates to a dispensing device for sucking and discharging (hereinafter referred to as dispensing) a predetermined amount of a liquid sample or reagent from one container to another, and an automatic analyzer equipped with the dispensing device. The present invention relates to a dispensing device including a pressure sensor and an automatic analyzer including the same.

例えば、血液,尿等の生体サンプル中の特定成分の定性・定量分析を行う生化学自動分析装置や免疫自動分析装置などの自動分析装置では、液体の試料や試薬をある容器(サンプル容器,試薬容器等)から別の容器(反応容器等)へ自動で吸引・吐出(以下、分注と称する)してサンプルと試薬を反応させるための分注装置が備えられている。   For example, in an automatic analyzer such as a biochemical automatic analyzer or an immune automatic analyzer that performs qualitative / quantitative analysis of a specific component in a biological sample such as blood or urine, a liquid sample or reagent is contained in a container (sample container, reagent). A dispensing device is provided for reacting a sample and a reagent by automatically aspirating and discharging (hereinafter referred to as dispensing) from another container (such as a container) to another container (such as a reaction container).

これら分注装置は極めて高い分注精度(分注再現性および正確性)が要求されるため、シリンジ,ダイアフラム等の圧力発生手段で発生させた圧力を正確に伝達すべく、分注流路内が精製水等の液体(以下、システム水と称する)で充填されているのが普通である。   Since these dispensing devices require extremely high dispensing accuracy (dispensation reproducibility and accuracy), in order to accurately transmit the pressure generated by pressure generating means such as syringes and diaphragms, Is usually filled with a liquid such as purified water (hereinafter referred to as system water).

特許文献1では、流路に圧力センサを備えることが提案されている。吸引する液体中に析出物があり吸引ノズルが詰まったり、吸引ノズルが吸引する液体に僅かに届かないままに吸引して空気を吸い込んだりすれば流路内の圧力が変化する。これを利用して分注の異常を検出し警報を出すことにより誤った分析を行うことを防止することができる。   In patent document 1, it is proposed to provide a pressure sensor in the flow path. If there is a deposit in the liquid to be sucked and the suction nozzle is clogged, or if air is sucked in without sucking the liquid sucked by the suction nozzle, the pressure in the flow path changes. It is possible to prevent erroneous analysis by using this to detect dispensing abnormality and issue an alarm.

特開2002−333449号公報JP 2002-333449 A

圧力センサは、−98kPaから98kPa(ゲージ圧)程度の低圧を高感度で測定するために径の大きなダイヤフラムを利用するのが一般的であり、その径は10mm程度ないしそれ以上であることが多い。一方、圧力センサに接続される配管の径は数mmと細いため、配管と圧力センサをつなぐ接続容器室内では流路の断面積が急拡大し、この部分の流れが乱れて流速が減少するため、流路内の気泡が圧力センサ部分に滞留しやすい。   A pressure sensor generally uses a diaphragm having a large diameter in order to measure a low pressure of about −98 kPa to 98 kPa (gauge pressure) with high sensitivity, and the diameter is often about 10 mm or more. . On the other hand, since the diameter of the pipe connected to the pressure sensor is as thin as several millimeters, the cross-sectional area of the flow path suddenly expands in the connection container chamber connecting the pipe and the pressure sensor, and the flow in this part is disturbed and the flow velocity decreases. , Bubbles in the flow path tend to stay in the pressure sensor portion.

ダイヤフラム径が小さい圧力センサを採用することで流れの乱れを抑え気泡を除去しやすくすることも可能だが、ダイヤフラム径の小さな圧力センサは一般的に製作が困難なため、汎用的な圧力センサと比較してきわめて高価になる問題がある。   Although a pressure sensor with a small diaphragm diameter can be used to suppress turbulence in the flow and make it easier to remove bubbles, a pressure sensor with a small diaphragm diameter is generally difficult to manufacture, so it is compared with a general-purpose pressure sensor. There is a problem that becomes extremely expensive.

分注装置において、分注流路内に気泡が残留すると、その分圧力伝達特性が変化し、分注精度に悪影響を与えるおそれがある。   In the dispensing device, if bubbles remain in the dispensing flow path, the pressure transmission characteristics change accordingly, which may adversely affect dispensing accuracy.

本発明は、分注時の圧力変動から分注時の異常を検知することを目的として圧力センサを備えた分注装置において、特に気泡の残りやすい圧力センサ取付部分の気泡が残留しにくい分注装置及びそれを備えた自動分析装置を提供することを目的とする。   The present invention relates to a dispensing device equipped with a pressure sensor for the purpose of detecting abnormalities during dispensing from pressure fluctuations during dispensing. An object is to provide an apparatus and an automatic analyzer including the apparatus.

上記目的を達成するための本発明の構成は以下の通りである。   The configuration of the present invention for achieving the above object is as follows.

液体を吸引・吐出するノズルと、該ノズルに接続され液体を吸引・吐出させるための圧力を発生させる圧力発生手段と、前記ノズル及び前記圧力発生手段を含めた流路内の圧力を測定する圧力センサと、を備えた分注装置において、
前記圧力センサと前記流路との接続部の流路内形状が円錐であり、円錐の頂点部が鉛直上方となるよう配置され、円錐の底周面の接線方向および円錐の頂点部に液体の流入出口を設け、円錐の底面に前記圧力センサの受圧面が配置されている分注装置。
Nozzle for sucking and discharging liquid, pressure generating means connected to the nozzle for generating pressure for sucking and discharging liquid, and pressure for measuring the pressure in the flow path including the nozzle and the pressure generating means A dispensing device comprising a sensor,
The connection between the pressure sensor and the flow path has a conical shape in the flow path, and the apex of the cone is arranged vertically upward, and the liquid is tangential to the bottom peripheral surface of the cone and the apex of the cone. A dispensing apparatus in which an inlet / outlet is provided and a pressure receiving surface of the pressure sensor is disposed on a bottom surface of a cone.

配管中の気泡を効率良く除去するためには、円錐の頂点部から抜けた気泡がノズルから大気中に抜けていくことが効率的であり、従い、円錐の頂点部の液体の流入出口に前記ノズル側の配管を接続することが好ましい。もちろん、配管中に気泡を除去するトラップ等を設ければ、必ずしも頂点部の液体流入出口にノズル側の配管を接続する必要はない。   In order to efficiently remove the bubbles in the pipe, it is efficient that the bubbles that have escaped from the top of the cone escape from the nozzle into the atmosphere. It is preferable to connect a pipe on the nozzle side. Of course, if a trap or the like for removing bubbles is provided in the pipe, it is not always necessary to connect the pipe on the nozzle side to the liquid inlet / outlet at the apex.

本発明は圧力センサの直径が配管に比べて大きい場合に効果的に気泡除去する作用がある。一般的な分注装置の流路径は数mm、一般的な低圧域測定用圧力センサの直径は10mm程度であり、このようなときに効果が大きい。もちろん、10mmという数字はそれ自体に臨界性はなく、一般的な圧力センサの外形寸法を目安として規定しているに過ぎない。圧力センサコストと気泡除去効果のアンドを考えた場合、センサ直径は5mm以上,30mm以下であることが好ましい。   The present invention has an effect of removing bubbles effectively when the diameter of the pressure sensor is larger than that of the pipe. The flow diameter of a general dispensing apparatus is several mm, and the diameter of a general pressure sensor for measuring a low pressure region is about 10 mm. In such a case, the effect is great. Of course, the number 10 mm is not critical in itself, and is merely defined using the general dimensions of a general pressure sensor as a guide. Considering the AND of pressure sensor cost and bubble removal effect, the sensor diameter is preferably 5 mm or more and 30 mm or less.

配管径と圧力センサ径の関係であるが、圧力センサ径が大きすぎると渦がうまく発生しなくなるので気泡除去効果は期待できない。一方、圧力センサ径と配管径が近すぎても同様である。実験的に検証してはいないが、配管径の数倍から10倍以内の圧力センサ径が好ましいと考えられる。   Although the relationship between the pipe diameter and the pressure sensor diameter, if the pressure sensor diameter is too large, vortices are not generated well, so the bubble removal effect cannot be expected. On the other hand, the same is true if the pressure sensor diameter and the pipe diameter are too close. Although not verified experimentally, a pressure sensor diameter within several to 10 times the pipe diameter is considered preferable.

本発明により、気泡が残りやすい圧力センサ取付部でも気泡除去が可能となり、圧力センサを備えた分注装置でも安定した圧力伝達特性が得られる。これにより、分注精度に悪影響を与えることなく、分注時の異常を判断する機能を備えることができる。   According to the present invention, it is possible to remove bubbles even in a pressure sensor mounting portion where bubbles are likely to remain, and a stable pressure transmission characteristic can be obtained even in a dispensing device equipped with a pressure sensor. Thereby, the function which judges the abnormality at the time of dispensing can be provided, without having a bad influence on dispensing accuracy.

また、本発明を用いれば、ダイヤフラム径が大きく高感度なセンサを採用できるため、分注異常判断機能において確度の高い,信頼性のある判定を下すことができる。   In addition, if the present invention is used, a highly sensitive sensor having a large diaphragm diameter can be adopted, so that a highly reliable and reliable determination can be made in the dispensing abnormality determination function.

本発明は気泡除去のための特別な機構を用いないため、極めて安価に気泡除去手段を提供できる。また、機構を用いていないことから故障のポテンシャルが無くメンテナンスフリーとなる。   Since the present invention does not use a special mechanism for removing bubbles, the bubble removing means can be provided at a very low cost. Also, since no mechanism is used, there is no failure potential and maintenance is free.

以下、本発明の実施例を説明する。   Examples of the present invention will be described below.

図1は本発明に関わる分注装置の概略構成図である。   FIG. 1 is a schematic configuration diagram of a dispensing apparatus according to the present invention.

ノズル1とシリンジ2は配管3a,3bを介し接続され、さらにシリンジ2は配管3cを介し電磁弁4と接続されている。分注動作は電磁弁4を閉じた状態でシリンジ2のプランジャを上下させることで行う。電磁弁4はさらに配管3dを介し給水ポンプ5と接続されており、電磁弁4を開放し、給水ポンプ5によってタンク6内のシステム水7を送り込むことで、分注流路内にシステム水の充填・置換を行うようになっている。   The nozzle 1 and the syringe 2 are connected via pipes 3a and 3b, and the syringe 2 is further connected to the solenoid valve 4 via a pipe 3c. The dispensing operation is performed by moving the plunger of the syringe 2 up and down while the electromagnetic valve 4 is closed. The electromagnetic valve 4 is further connected to a water supply pump 5 through a pipe 3d. The electromagnetic valve 4 is opened, and the system water 7 in the tank 6 is fed by the water supply pump 5 so that the system water is introduced into the dispensing flow path. Filling and replacement are performed.

分注時の異常を検知するために、ダイアフラム直径14.5mm の圧力センサ8が接続容器9を介して分注流路(流路系1.5mm )に接続されている。なお、圧力センサ8の接続箇所は、分注動作を行うときの流路系内部であればどこでも問題なく、図1ではノズル1とシリンジ2の間に接続されているが、シリンジ2と電磁弁4の間でも構わない。   In order to detect an abnormality at the time of dispensing, a pressure sensor 8 having a diaphragm diameter of 14.5 mm is connected to a dispensing flow path (flow path system 1.5 mm) via a connection container 9. In addition, there is no problem anywhere in the connection place of the pressure sensor 8 as long as it is inside the flow path system when the dispensing operation is performed, and in FIG. 1, it is connected between the nozzle 1 and the syringe 2, but the syringe 2 and the electromagnetic valve. It may be between 4.

図2に接続容器9の詳細構造および圧力センサ8の取付け方法を示す。   FIG. 2 shows a detailed structure of the connection container 9 and a method for attaching the pressure sensor 8.

接続容器の室内9aは円錐状となっており、円錐頂点が鉛直上方となるように設置する。円錐の底周面の接線方向には流入出口9bが、頂点部には流入出口9cがあり、流入出口9bは給水ポンプ側の配管と接続し、流入出口9cはノズル側の配管と接続する。これにより、給水ポンプ5により接続容器室内9aにシステム水7を流す場合、システム水7が流入出口9bより流入し、流入出口9cに抜ける構造となる。   The connecting container chamber 9a has a conical shape and is installed so that the apex of the cone is vertically upward. There is an inflow / outlet port 9b in the tangential direction of the bottom peripheral surface of the cone, and an inflow / outlet port 9c at the apex. Thereby, when the system water 7 is caused to flow into the connection container chamber 9a by the water supply pump 5, the system water 7 flows in from the inflow / outflow port 9b and comes out to the inflow / outlet port 9c.

圧力センサ8はダイアフラム(受圧面)8aが円錐の底面となるように取付ける。圧力センサ8の固定方法は接続部よりシステム水が漏水しないような構造であればよく、圧力センサの形状・仕様にあわせる。ねじ部を持つセンサであればねじ込みとしてもよいし、センサの背面より固定用金具で押し付けるようにしてもよい。   The pressure sensor 8 is attached so that the diaphragm (pressure receiving surface) 8a becomes the bottom of the cone. The pressure sensor 8 may be fixed as long as the system water does not leak from the connection portion, and is matched to the shape and specifications of the pressure sensor. If the sensor has a threaded portion, it may be screwed or may be pressed from the back of the sensor with a fixing bracket.

次に、接続容器室内で気泡を除去する仕組みについて説明する。   Next, a mechanism for removing bubbles in the connection container chamber will be described.

流入出口9bより流入したシステム水は室内9aの円周面に沿って旋回流を起こす。旋回流による遠心力のためシステム水は室内9a内壁をらせん状に流れ、このとき室内9a内壁に残る気泡は勢いのある旋回流によって押し流される。遠心力により比重の軽い気泡は円錐中央に集まり、そのまま浮上して流入出口9cより押し出される。流量によっては、システム水を流している間、気泡の集合が円錐中央に集まったまま浮上できない場合があるが、この場合、システム水を断続的に流すようにすれば、この集まった気泡が、システム水の供給を止めた時に流入出口9c付近に浮上し、再度供給したときにそのまま押し出されるから、除去できる。   The system water flowing in from the inlet / outlet 9b causes a swirling flow along the circumferential surface of the room 9a. Due to the centrifugal force caused by the swirling flow, the system water flows spirally on the inner wall of the indoor 9a, and at this time, the bubbles remaining on the inner wall of the indoor 9a are swept away by the vigorous swirling flow. Bubbles with a light specific gravity gather at the center of the cone due to the centrifugal force, float as they are, and are pushed out from the inlet / outlet 9c. Depending on the flow rate, while the system water is flowing, there may be a case where a set of bubbles cannot be lifted while gathering at the center of the cone, but in this case, if the system water is allowed to flow intermittently, When the supply of system water is stopped, it floats in the vicinity of the inlet / outlet 9c, and when it is supplied again, it is pushed out as it is.

図3は、この発明の実施例にかかる自動分析装置の構成例を示している。まず、液体試料を装置にセットするための試料ディスク201,その液体試料分注を行う試料分注プローブ204,液体試料と試薬の反応容器である反応セル211およびその保持具である反応ディスク206,測定項目に応じた試薬をセットする複数の試薬ディスク202,210,試薬の分注を行う複数の試薬プローブ203,209,反応セル211中に分注された液体試料と添加された試薬の反応を安定させるために攪拌するための攪拌機構208,反応セル中の廃液の吸引および洗浄を行う洗浄機構207,そしてこれらの機構および分析の制御部からなる。また、液体試料のセットは、試料ディスクの代わりに試料ラックによるものであっても構わない。試薬分注の移動機構についても試薬プローブが回転移動の代わりにXY機構による平面移動であっても構わない。   FIG. 3 shows a configuration example of the automatic analyzer according to the embodiment of the present invention. First, a sample disk 201 for setting a liquid sample in the apparatus, a sample dispensing probe 204 for dispensing the liquid sample, a reaction cell 211 that is a reaction container for the liquid sample and the reagent, and a reaction disk 206 that is a holder thereof, A plurality of reagent disks 202 and 210 for setting reagents according to measurement items, a plurality of reagent probes 203 and 209 for dispensing reagents, and a reaction between the liquid sample dispensed in the reaction cell 211 and the added reagent It comprises a stirring mechanism 208 for stirring for stabilization, a cleaning mechanism 207 for sucking and cleaning waste liquid in the reaction cell, and a control section for these mechanisms and analysis. The set of liquid samples may be based on a sample rack instead of the sample disk. As for the reagent dispensing moving mechanism, the reagent probe may be moved in a plane by an XY mechanism instead of rotational movement.

本発明に関わる分注装置の概略構成図である。It is a schematic block diagram of the dispensing apparatus in connection with this invention. 本発明における接続容器の詳細構造および圧力センサの取付方法を示す図である。It is a figure which shows the detailed structure of the connection container in this invention, and the attachment method of a pressure sensor. 本発明の分注装置が適用可能な自動分析装置の概略構成図である。It is a schematic block diagram of the automatic analyzer which can apply the dispensing apparatus of this invention.

符号の説明Explanation of symbols

1…ノズル、2…シリンジ、3a,3b,3c,3d…配管、4…電磁弁、5…給水ポンプ、6…タンク、7…システム水、8…圧力センサ、8a…ダイヤフラム(受圧面)、9…接続容器、9a…室内、9b,9c…流入出口、10…パッキン。   DESCRIPTION OF SYMBOLS 1 ... Nozzle, 2 ... Syringe, 3a, 3b, 3c, 3d ... Piping, 4 ... Solenoid valve, 5 ... Water supply pump, 6 ... Tank, 7 ... System water, 8 ... Pressure sensor, 8a ... Diaphragm (pressure receiving surface), 9 ... Connection container, 9a ... Indoor, 9b, 9c ... Inlet / outlet, 10 ... Packing.

Claims (2)

液体を吸引・吐出するノズルと、
該ノズルに接続され液体を吸引・吐出させるための圧力を発生させる圧力発生手段と、
前記ノズル及び前記圧力発生手段を含めた流路内の圧力を測定する圧力センサと、
を備えた分注装置において、
前記圧力センサと前記流路との接続部の流路内形状が円錐であり、円錐の頂点部が鉛直上方となるよう配置され、円錐の底周面の接線方向に前記圧力発生手段と接続される液体の流入出口を設け、円錐の頂点部に前記ノズルと接続される液体の流入出口を設け、
更に、円錐の底面に前記圧力センサの受圧面が配置され、かつ前記円錐の底面の直径が5mm以上30mm以下であることを特徴とする分注装置。
A nozzle for sucking and discharging liquid;
Pressure generating means connected to the nozzle for generating pressure for sucking and discharging the liquid;
A pressure sensor for measuring the pressure in the flow path including the nozzle and the pressure generating means;
In a dispensing device with
The connection portion between the pressure sensor and the flow channel has a conical shape in the flow channel, and the apex of the cone is arranged vertically upward, and is connected to the pressure generating means in the tangential direction of the bottom peripheral surface of the cone. A liquid inflow / outflow port is provided, and a liquid inflow / outflow port connected to the nozzle is provided at the apex of the cone,
Further, the dispensing device is characterized in that the pressure receiving surface of the pressure sensor is disposed on the bottom surface of the cone, and the diameter of the bottom surface of the cone is 5 mm or more and 30 mm or less .
試薬と試料を混合させる反応容器と、
該反応容器中の反応を計測する計測手段と、
該反応容器に試料を分注する分注手段と、
を備えた自動分析装置において、
前記分注手段が請求項1に記載の分注装置であることを特徴とする自動分析装置。
A reaction vessel for mixing the reagent and the sample;
Measuring means for measuring the reaction in the reaction vessel;
Dispensing means for dispensing a sample into the reaction vessel;
In an automatic analyzer equipped with
The automatic analyzer according to claim 1, wherein the dispensing unit is the dispensing apparatus according to claim 1 .
JP2004090802A 2004-03-26 2004-03-26 Dispensing device and automatic analyzer equipped with the same Active JP4178122B2 (en)

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