(19)
(11)EP 3 139 162 B1

(12)EUROPEAN PATENT SPECIFICATION

(45)Mention of the grant of the patent:
20.06.2018 Bulletin 2018/25

(21)Application number: 16187681.8

(22)Date of filing:  07.09.2016
(51)Int. Cl.: 
G01N 33/49  (2006.01)
G01N 35/00  (2006.01)
G01N 35/10  (2006.01)

(54)

MEASUREMENT APPARATUS WITH MOVABLE MEASUREMENT CELL

MESSAPPARATUR MIT BEWEGLICHER MESSZELLE

DISPOSITIF DE MESURE AVEC CELLULE DE MESURE MOBILE


(84)Designated Contracting States:
AL AT BE BG CH CY CZ DE DK EE ES FI FR GB GR HR HU IE IS IT LI LT LU LV MC MK MT NL NO PL PT RO RS SE SI SK SM TR

(30)Priority: 07.09.2015 DE 102015114951

(43)Date of publication of application:
08.03.2017 Bulletin 2017/10

(73)Proprietor: EXIAS Medical GmbH
8020 Graz (AT)

(72)Inventor:
  • Nauschnegg, Gerald
    8051 Graz (AT)

(74)Representative: Dilg, Haeusler, Schindelmann Patentanwaltsgesellschaft mbH 
Leonrodstrasse 58
80636 München
80636 München (DE)


(56)References cited: : 
DE-T2- 69 216 485
US-B1- 6 343 223
US-A- 5 646 046
US-B1- 8 158 430
  
      
    Note: Within nine months from the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent, any person may give notice to the European Patent Office of opposition to the European patent granted. Notice of opposition shall be filed in a written reasoned statement. It shall not be deemed to have been filed until the opposition fee has been paid. (Art. 99(1) European Patent Convention).


    Description

    Field of invention



    [0001] The present invention further relates to a measurement apparatus for measuring at least one constituent of a liquid sample, the measurement apparatus comprising a movable measurement cell. Further, the present invention relates to a method for manufacturing a measurement apparatus cell and still further relates to a method for measuring at least one constituent of a liquid sample.

    Art Background



    [0002] For measuring parameters of a blood sample, such as blood gases, electrolytes and metabolites, an accurate control of the temperature of the sample to be examined may be required. Samples may be supplied into a conventional measurement apparatus at different temperatures, such as for example between 4°C and 41 °C. The measurement of the blood parameters is however required to be performed at a fixed temperature, such as 37°C. Such a temperature may for example be required to measure a partial pressure of oxygen, a partial pressure of carbon dioxide, to measure a pH or to measure an electrolyte concentration, such as calcium, sodium, potassium or chloride ions.

    [0003] It may take some time to adjust the temperature of the sample to the intended measurement temperature. Furthermore, a measurement time is influenced by the time required to supply the sample into the measurement cell in the measurement apparatus. Further, the measurement time may be dependent on maximally possible pump velocities.

    [0004] Furthermore, a measurement accuracy may depend on a possible change of the sample on the way from the external sample source to the measurement sensors due to carry-over effects (i.e. dilution). Also a possible entrapment of air bubbles may result in wrong measurements. The carry-over effects as well
    as the entrapment of air bubbles may most likely happen on positions where the material of the sample path changes. Different materials (e.g. steel, plastic, rubber, material of the sensor (casing) etc.) with which the sample may be in contact during supply to the measurement apparatus or during measurement itself may therefore influence the result of the measurement and thus may influence the measurement accuracy.

    [0005] The required accuracy of the temperature regulation or temperature control may for example be 37°C +/- 0.2°C. Such accuracy of the temperature regulation may be required due to the temperature dependency of the solubility of gases within blood and within aqueous solutions, as well as the temperature dependency of the pH value for example. It may further be desired to use as little amount of sample as possible, while maintaining measurement accuracy. In this respect, the wetting properties of different materials of the measurement cell as well as the sample supply path may be relevant and also the constructional design of the measurement cell.

    [0006] In conventional measurement systems, the sample may be heated along a pre-heating path which is integrated within the measurement apparatus, Other arrangements or concepts of the prior art directly heat up the sample within the measurement chamber by positioning the measurement cell or measurement chamber between voluminous heating blocks. Other systems of the prior art use measurement cells with sensor substrates having printed thereon resistance traces and a printed temperature sensor for changing and controlling the temperature of the sample, the measurement cell directly attached to the measurement apparatus in a fixed position.

    [0007] The European patent application EP 1 674 866 A1 discloses an arrangement for controlling the temperature of a measurement cell, wherein the measurement cell comprises a measurement channel in which a sensor element is arranged and an analyzer having a surface that can be temperature-controlled. The measurement cell can exchangeably be inserted into the analyzer and may be brought in contact with the surface which may be temperature-controllable. A heat conducting elastic or plastic layer is attached on a measurement cell wall or the surface which may be temperature-controllable.

    [0008] The European patent application EP 2 199 792 A1 discloses a method for examining the quality of a thermal coupling of a measurement cell, wherein the measurement cell is exchangeably insertable into an analyzer and comprises at least one sensor element within a measurement channel. The measurement channel is filled with a calibration liquid and a rapid temperature change is applied on the element which may be temperature-controllable and with which the measurement cell is in mechanical contact. Further, a time course of a signal of the at least one sensor element is acquired and the quality of the thermal coupling is determined based on an analysis of the time course of the signal.

    [0009] US 5,342,498 discloses an improved electronic wiring board having a thermistor and at least one blood gas sensor supported, in close relation, one to the other, on one side of the board and a heater supported on the other side of the board to provide heat in response to temperature sensed by the thermistor, to at least the region where the thermistor and the blood gas sensor are positioned on the board to control the temperature of the region of the board within a narrow distribution of temperatures,
    US 5,718,816 describes a sensor cartridge into which sensors are installed, wherein a plurality of inner walls within the housing locate a pump tube assembly and right angle fluid coupling within the housing. An opening in the housing receives a first boss which extends from the blood analyzer. A capture/release arm has an opening through which the first boss protrudes. The arm is resiliently held in place such that an inner edge of the opening is captured within a ring-like groove in the boss that extends from the blood analyzer when the cartridge is installed in the blood analyzer. Electrical contacts of the connector on the rear side of the sensor assembly are aligned to mating electrical contacts of the blood analyzer as the sensor assembly is being installed by alignment of the boss which extends from the blood analyzer to mate with the boss which extends from the housing, and alignment of two male fluid connectors. DE69216485T2 discloses an measurement apparatus with a movable measurement cell.

    [0010] Most measurement systems and methods of the prior art have the disadvantage that a voluminous, heavy heating block and/or a pre-tempering path and/or a heated measurement chamber are used, to satisfy the requirements of the temperature control during the measurement. The heating
    block or the pre-tempering path are, due to cost issues, to be arranged within the measurement apparatus and cannot be placed into a consumable. Further, the thermal coupling between the heating block and the actual measurement cell is unknown and needs to be examined, as discussed in the above cited application EP 2 199 792 A1. The quality of the thermal coupling strongly influences the velocity or speed of arriving at a temperature of the sample that is required for the measurement.

    [0011] Another measurement system and method of the prior art has the disadvantage that a measurement cell with a heated sensor substrate is to be placed in a fixed position at the analysator. This arrangement requires to extended tubing paths, resulting in a higher demand of calibration liquids and a higher time effort for supplying these liquids. Another disadvantage of this setup is that the sample input system has to be rotatably coupled to the measurement cell requiring a sealing element between the sample supply system and the measurement cell.

    [0012] In prior art solutions, the position of the measurement cell is fixed within the measurement apparatus. The supply of the sample thus necessarily is performed using extending tubing resulting in a change/modification of the sample within the supply tubing. Further, the required minimal sample volume is negatively affected. Due to the extensive tubing paths, also the minimally achievable measurement times are limited by a lower limit (for example 35 s) thereby lowering throughput.

    [0013] There may be a need for a movable measurement cell for measuring at least one constituent of a liquid sample, for a measurement system for measuring at least one constituent of a liquid sample, for a method for manufacturing a movable measurement cell and for a method for measuring at least one constituent of a liquid sample, wherein at least one of the above-mentioned disadvantages of the prior art are attenuated, reduced or even avoided.

    [0014] In particular, it may be desired to achieve a measurement cell that allows an accurate measurement of at least one constituent of a liquid sample in a reliable manner, in a sufficiently short measurement time and requiring a sufficiently low amount of sample. Furthermore, it may be desired to provide a measurement cell which may easily be manufactured and which allows convenient feeding of a sample from different source containers in particular having a short sample supply path.

    Summary of the Invention



    [0015] The need is satisfied by the subject-matter of the independent claims. According to the present invention it is provided a measurement apparatus comprising a movable measurement cell for measuring at least one constituent of a liquid sample, in particular whole blood, the measurement cell including a first portion comprising a measurement system having at least one sensitive area at a surface of the first portion, a second portion comprising a at least a part of a reception space for the sample, the second portion being connected to the first portion such that the sample is in contact with the at least one sensitive area when the sample is located within the reception space, and a sample supply system attached to an inlet (e.g. located or fixed at the first portion and/or at the second portion) to allow supply of a liquid sample into the reception space. The sample supply system may be fixedly attached to the inlet, not allowing deformation or movement. The sample supply system may be made from solid and/or non-bendable material(s) and may be stiff. The sample supply system may be adapted to supply a fluid sample to the reception space from a sample container providing access to a surface of the liquid sample, in particular without requiring any (bendable or flexible) tubing or any elastomeric sealing. The supply system may not change shape and/or may not deform during supply of the sample into the reception space.

    [0016] The movable measurement cell may in particular be moved for feeding a sample from an external source via the sample supply system and the inlet of the measurement cell into the reception space. Different sample source containers or external equipment providing the sample may require different orientations or configurations of the sample supply system in order to be able to feed the sample from the external source into the reception space. The sample supply system may be fixedly attached to the inlet (in one embodiment being arranged at the second portion of the measurement cell, in another embodiment being arranged at the first portion of the measurement cell). Thus, during feeding a sample from different sample sources, the sample supply system remains attached to the inlet in a position and orientation fixed relative to the rest of the measurement cell. However, the whole measurement cell may be moved (for example translated and/or rotated or turned) in order to arrange the sample supply system (in particular regarding orientation) such that the sample can be filled from the external source or external container into the sample supply system which in turn supplies the sample via the inlet into the reception space for measurement.

    [0017] The measurement system may in particular be adapted to measure the concentration of at least one ion, such as K+, Ca++, Na+, Cl-, and/or pH and/or partial pressures of O2, CO2 and/or concentrations of Glucose, Lactate, Urea, Creatinine or the like. For each particular analyte, at least one separate respective sensitive area may be provided. When several sensitive areas for measurement of different constituents of the liquid are provided, the sensitive area may be arranged side by side along a longitudinal direction of the reception space.

    [0018] The measurement system may be adapted to perform potentiometric and/or amperometric measurement and/or conductometric measurements i.e. measurements of electrical potentials and/or electric currents and/or electric impedances. As measurement result, concentration of different analytes may be determined and/or the values of the partial pressures of different gases within the sample may be determined and/or the volumetric amount of blood cells and output. The measurement system may alternatively or additionally also be adapted to perform optical measurements.

    [0019] The reception space may in particular be configured as a channel having a longitudinal direction corresponding to a flow direction during supply of the sample into the reception space. The reception space comprised in the second portion may be formed as a channel or as a groove and the reception space may be (at least partly) closed when the first portion is connected to the second portion. The reception space may be accessed after connecting the second portion to the first portion via the inlet and/or via an outlet (in particular e.g. at the second portion).

    [0020] The second portion may be integrally formed and may not comprise any electrically conducting material. The second portion may in particular serve as a casing providing an enclosure to define the reception space or measurement channel. The reception space will also be referred to as measurement channel. The first portion may be glued to the second portion or may be connected by other means. A seal may be arranged between interfaces of the first portion and the second portion in order to tightly seal the reception space.

    [0021] The sample supply system allows supplying a sample from different source containers into the reception space via for example a supply tube, such as a supply needle made from an inert metal or any (in particular biocompatible) material matching the requirements for this application, e.g. some polymeric material. Thereby, deterioration of the sample may be reduced and the supply length may be limited to the length of the sample supply system.

    [0022] According to the present invention, the sample supply system includes a supply needle connected at one end to the inlet having a lumen in communication with the reception space.

    [0023] The supply needle may be straight and may have a length between 3 cm and 20 cm. Thereby, a short supply length may be provided. For feeding a sample from an external container into the reception space, another end of the supply needle may be immersed into the sample contained in an open external container, while the other end of the supply needle is vertically arranged at a lower level than the one end of the needle that is connected to the inlet. For feeding a sample from other external sources, the supply needle may be oriented differently, for example such that the one end is vertically at a lower level than the other end of the supply needle. Thereby, samples from different sample sources may conveniently be fed into the reception space for measurement by previously appropriately orienting/positioning (i.e. moving in general) the movable measurement cell.

    [0024] According to an embodiment of the present invention, the sample supply system further includes an elastomer element having a through hole, the supply needle being at least partially inserted into the through hole. The supply needle is in a fixed orientation coupled to the first and/or second portion.

    [0025] The elastomer may comprise rubber and the elastomer element may in particular have (optionally in some embodiments) a rotational symmetry, the symmetry axis in particular running along a longitudinal axis of the through hole. In other embodiments the elastomer element does not have any symmetry. The elastomer element may, when engaged into a supporting portion, support and protect the supply needle. Furthermore, the elastomer element may allow connection of a capillary, while the supply needle is at the other end partly inserted into the through hole such that the other end of the needle and an end of the capillary contact each other (or are at least close apart from each other) at a center of the through hole, thereby allowing feeding a sample originally located within the capillary into the supply needle for supply of the sample into the reception space.

    [0026] According to an embodiment of the present invention, the supply needle is adapted to allow supply of a sample from a syringe or from a vacutainer, wherein the supply needle being partially inserted into the through hole of the elastomer element from one side allows supply of a sample from a capillary while the capillary is partially inserted into the through hole of the supply needle from another side.

    [0027] Thereby, a number of conventionally used sample containers or sample source equipment is supported.

    [0028] According to an embodiment of the present invention, the movable measurement cell further comprises a heating/temperature detection system integrated into the first portion,

    [0029] The heating/temperature detection system may be adapted for both heating and temperature detection. The heating/temperature detection system may in particular be adapted to heat the sample when located within the reception space. The heating/temperature detection system may be electrically insulated from the sample when arranged or located or present within the reception space. The heating/temperature detection system may be located close to the reception space, such as 0.02 mm to 1.5 mm away from the reception space, in particular from the sensitive area of the measurement system.

    [0030] The heating/temperature detection system may further include a control system that is adapted to operate a heating system and a temperature detection system of the heating/temperature detection system, in order to change and maintain the temperature of the sample supplied to the reception space. Thereby, the measurement of the at least one constituent may be performed at a defined temperature.

    [0031] Thereby, a simple heating/temperature detection system is provided requiring a simple construction. Heating may be performed by running an electric current through the heating wire. Temperature detection may be performed by measuring a resistance of the heating wire, wherein the resistance may depend on the temperature. The heating wire may be arranged in the meandering manner such that the heating wire multiple times crosses (when viewed in projection) the measurement channel, without electrically contacting a sample within the reception space. Thereby, a homogeneous temperature profile, in particular constant temperature, along the longitudinal direction of the measurement channel may be achieved. Thereby, the measurement accuracy may be improved.

    [0032] According to an embodiment of the present invention, the first portion comprises a polymer formed as a printed circuit board. The polymer may effectively adhere to the second portion when a conventionally available adhesive is used. Further, manufacturing the first portion may thereby be simplified. In particular, a conventionally available printed circuit board material may be used and conventionally available techniques may be applied to form copper conductive traces and/or sensor areas and/or other electronic elements onto the polymer according to the requirements of the measurement system and the requirements of the heating/temperature detection system. The printed circuit board may be layered.

    [0033] According to an embodiment of the present invention, the printed circuit board comprises several layers including a first layer including the measurement system, and (at least) a second layer having an upper surface attached to a lower surface of the first layer and including a heating/temperature detection system, wherein an upper surface of the first layer is attached, in particular using an adhesive, to the second portion to partly close the reception space.

    [0034] Thereby, manufacturing of the first portion may be simplified, while enabling an accurate measurement, while the temperature of the sample is controlled.

    [0035] According to an embodiment of the present invention, the several layers further include and are attached to each other in that order: a third layer including a heat conducting material for distributing heat generated by the heating/temperature detection system; and/or a fourth layer including an electrically conducting material for electrical shielding; and/or a fifth layer including a heating/temperature detection system; and/or a sixth layer including an electrically conducting material for electrical shielding. Other orders of layers and other numbers of layers may be possible. The number of layers and order of layers may be selected depending on the application.

    [0036] The additional layers may be optional but may improve homogeneity of the temperature distribution and/or may reduce the influence of disturbing electrical or electromagnetic signals.

    [0037] According to an embodiment of the present invention, the material of the printed circuit board comprises a fibre-reinforced polymer, fibres of the fibre-reinforced polymer in particular including at least one of glass, carbon, aramid, basalt, paper, wood, asbestos, wherein the polymer in particular comprises a at least one of epoxy, vinylester, polyester thermosetting plastic, phenol formaldehyde. Thereby, conventionally available polymer material may be used, simplifying the manufacturing of the measurement cell and reducing the costs of the measurement cell.

    [0038] According to an embodiment of the present invention, the second portion is integrally formed, in particular manufactured by injection molding, further in particular using polycarbonate and/or blends of polymers. Thereby, manufacturing of the first portion may be simplified and costs may be reduced. Further, connecting the first portion with the second portion may be achieved by gluing the first portion to the second portion using a conventionally available adhesive.

    [0039] It should be understood that features individually or in any combination described, mentioned or provided for a movable measurement cell are also, individually or in any combination applicable or employable to a measurement apparatus for measuring at least one constituent of a sample, to a method for manufacturing a movable measurement cell and to a method for measuring at least one constituent of a sample according to an embodiment of the present invention and vice versa.

    [0040] According to the present invention, it is provided a measurement apparatus for measuring at least one constituent of a liquid sample, the measurement apparatus comprising: a movable measurement cell comprising a trail engagement portion; a mounting system for movably mounting the movable measurement cell, the mounting system including; a bar having a guiding trail; and a supporting portion at one end of the bar for supporting the supply needle, wherein the trail engagement portion of the measurement cell is engageable with the guiding trail for moving the movable measurement cell in a direction of the guiding trail being along a longitudinal direction of the supply needle.

    [0041] The measurement apparatus may further comprise a data processing module for processing measurement data obtained from the measurement system, an energy supply system for providing electrical energy to components (such as the measurement system, heating/temperature detection system(s)) of the measurement cell, pump(s), valve(s), a user interface, external network capability, access to a database, etc.

    [0042] The bar may also be formed as a frame allowing to move the movable measurement cell along a straight translation path and also allowing the swivel or rotate of pivot the measurement cell. The moving distance may amount to between 3 cm and 15 cm, the cell may be rotated by 10 to 90 degrees or even further. The bar may have a length between 3 cm and 15 cm. The measurement cell engaged with the guiding trail may be shifted (for example by hand) along the guiding trail. The measurement cell may for example comprise as trail engagement portion one (or more) protrusions (in particular integrally formed with the second portion) being inserted into and/or protruding through a slit representing the guiding trail. Other configurations are possible. When the measurement cell is shifted towards another end of the bar, the trail engagement portion may be disengaged from the guiding trail for removing the measurement cell from the mounting system. For example, when the guiding trail is provided as a slot, the slot may have at the other end of the bar, an enlarged opening through which ends of the trail engagement portion of the measurement cell may be withdrawn for removal of the measurement cell (e.g. for maintenance or replacement). Also the bar may be manufactured from a polymer, in particular manufactured using injection moulding.

    [0043] According to an embodiment of the present invention, the supporting portion of the mounting system is adapted to circumferentially engage the elastomer element, thereby clamping the elastomer element while the supply needle is at least partially inserted into the through hole of the elastomer element. The supporting portion may prohibit bending of the supply needle.

    [0044] According to an embodiment of the present invention, the measurement apparatus further comprises a base, wherein the measurement cell is rotatably fixed at one point to the base, thereby allowing to pivot the measurement cell around the one point to orient the supply needle such that the end connected to the inlet of the measurement cell is selectively vertically at a higher position, at a same position or at a lower position than another end of the supply needle into which the sample is supplied from an external source, wherein the bar is in particular, at another end apart from the one end where the supporting portion is arranged, rotatably fixed at a portions of the base that can rotate around a rotation center. Thereby, feeding samples from different source equipment into the reception space of the movable measurement cell is enabled.

    [0045] The measurement apparatus may further comprise a washing plate, being fixed at the base and having a through hole, wherein when the movable measurement cell is appropriately pivoted, the elastomer element contacts the washing plate and seals fluid supplied to the through hole of the washing hole such that the fluid is guided through the through hole of the elastomer element and the lumen of the supply needle to enter the reception space. The washing plate may serve as a fluidic coupling means between the inlet of the measurement cell and washing and/or calibration solutions and/or reagents. Washing and/or calibration solutions may be introduced into the measurement cell via the washing plate.

    [0046] According to an embodiment of the present invention it is provided a method for manufacturing a measurement apparatus comprising manufacturing a movable measurement cell for measuring at least one constituent of a liquid sample, the method comprising: manufacturing a first portion comprising a measurement system having at least one sensitive area at a surface of the first portion; manufacturing, in particular by injection moulding, a second portion comprising a at least a part of a reception space for the sample; connecting the second portion and the first portion such that the sample is in contact with the at least one sensitive area when the sample is located within the reception space; and attaching a sample supply system to an inlet (e.g. at the second portion) to allow supply of a liquid sample into the reception space.

    [0047] The first portion may be manufactured by layering several layers each layer comprising circuitry or shielding or heat generation or temperature distribution or temperature measurement equipment. Thereby, conventional methodology may be utilized.

    [0048] According to the present invention it is provided a method for measuring at least one constituent of a liquid sample, the method comprising; providing a measurement apparatus comprising a movable measurement cell for measuring at least one constituent of a liquid sample, the measurement cell including: a first portion comprising a measurement system having at least one sensitive area at a surface of the first portion; a second portion comprising a at least a part of a reception space for the sample, the second portion being connected to the first portion such that the sample is in contact with the at least one sensitive area when the sample is located within the reception space; and a sample supply system attached to an inlet (e.g. at the second portion) to allow supply of a liquid sample into the reception space; moving the movable measurement cell such that the sample supply system is in a configuration, in particular a position and/or an orientation, to allow feeding a liquid sample from an external source into the sample supply system.

    [0049] The method for measuring may further comprise operating the heating/temperature detection system in order to achieve a desired
    measurement temperature of the sample located within the reception space and to maintain this desired temperature. The desired temperature may for example be 37°C. The accuracy of the temperature control may for example achieve a temperature of 37°C +/- 0.2°C.

    [0050] According to an embodiment of the present invention, the temperature control (including heating and/or measurement and/or regulation of the temperature to achieve a constant temperature) may be directly integrated into the measurement cell, in particular in the polymeric sensor substrate (printed circuit board material). The sample supply may be directly attached to the measurement cell, thus may be a portion of the measurement cell.

    [0051] In embodiments of the present invention, the expensive, voluminous and heavy heating block and/or a pre-heating path are avoided and the heating can completely be included in a movable measurement cell. The measurement cell may be movably mounted to support different sample containers. Due to the direct connection of the sample supply at the casing of the measurement cell, an extremely short sample path without the need for moveable connection between the sample supply system and the measurement cell is enabled, avoiding a sealing or a tubing part. Thereby, deterioration of the sample may be reduced or even avoided, in turn enabling an extremely small sample volume, such as between 1 µl and 50 µl, in particular between 5 µl and 30 µl, in particular below 20 µl. Due to the integrated heating, the sample temperature may be brought to the required temperature in a very short time, such as in a time between 1 s and 10 s, in particular below 5 s. The opportunity to move the measurement cell (in particular for feeding a sample into the reception space and/or for measuring) enables to feed all reagents required for the operation into the measurement cell on a short path, thereby reducing the measurement time.

    [0052] According to an embodiment of the present invention, the measurement cell comprises a combination of features including a polymeric substrate, an integrated heating- and/or temperature detection- and/or temperature regulation system and an attachment of a sample supply system directly at the casing of the measuring cell, while allowing to move the measurement cell.

    [0053] A measurement apparatus may comprise a temperature regulation system (external to the measurement cell) for controlling the temperature within the measurement cell, in particular the reception space.

    [0054] In embodiments of the present invention, the sample volume required to perform a measurement of at least one constituent may be minimized and the complexity of the measurement apparatus may be reduced.

    [0055] The aspects defined above and further aspects of the present invention are apparent from the examples of embodiment to be described hereinafter and are explained with reference to the examples of embodiment. The invention will be described in more detail hereinafter with reference to examples of embodiment but to which the invention is not limited.

    Brief Description of the Drawings



    [0056] Embodiments of the present invention are now described with reference to the accompanying drawings. The invention is not restricted to the described or illustrated embodiments.

    Fig. 1 schematically illustrates (a part of) a measurement apparatus according to an embodiment of the present invention including a movable measurement cell according to an embodiment of the present invention;

    Fig. 2 schematically illustrates a construction of a printed circuit board included in a movable measurement cell according to an embodiment of the present invention;

    Fig. 3 illustrates a perspective view of (a part of) a measurement apparatus according to an embodiment of the present invention during a purging step;

    Figs. 4, 5 and 6 illustrate measurement apparatuses according to embodiments of the present invention during feeding of a sample from different sample sources according to embodiments of the present invention.


    Detailed Description



    [0057] Fig. 1 schematically illustrates (a part of) a measurement apparatus 1 according to an embodiment of the present invention including a movable measurement cell 3 according to an embodiment of the present invention and a mounting system 6. The measurement cell 3 includes a first portion 5 comprising a measurement system 8 having at least one sensitive area 10 and the measurement cell 3 further including a (in Fig. 1 only partly visible) second portion 7 which comprises a reception space 9 for the sample.

    [0058] The first portion 5 and the second portion 7 are connected with each other by gluing such that the sample is in contact with the at least one sensitive area 10 when the sample is located within the reception space 9.

    [0059] The movable measurement cell 3 further comprises a sample supply system 11 which is (fixedly) attached to an inlet 13 at the second portion 7 of the measurement cell 3 to allow supply of a liquid sample into the reception space 9 without requiring any tubing and/or elastomeric sealing. In other embodiments the inlet 13 is arranged at the first portion 5 and thus also the supply needle is attached to the first portion 5. The sample supply system 11 includes a supply needle 15 connected at one end to the inlet 13 and having a lumen in communication with the reception space 9. The reception space 9 may for example have a volume between 10 µm and 30 µm, in particular substantially or less than 20 µm.

    [0060] The measurement system 8 includes in the illustrated example five different sensitive areas 10 for measuring the concentration of five different constituents of the sample. The constituents to be measured may for example include ions of K, Ca, Cl, Na and also ions of H. Thus, also the pH may be measured using the measuring system 8.

    [0061] The measurement apparatus 1 may further comprise (in Fig. 1 not illustrated) a data processing module for processing measurement data obtained from the measurement system 8, an energy supply system for providing electrical energy to components (such as the measurement system, heating/temperature detection system(s)) of the measurement cell, pump(s), valve(s), a user interface, external network capability, access to a database, etc.

    [0062] What is illustrated in Fig. 1 is a projection through the first portion 5 which is formed by a printed circuit board including five layers, as is illustrated in Fig. 2.

    [0063] The sample supply system 11 further comprises an elastomer element 17 having a through hole 19 through which the supply needle 15 may (partly) be inserted. In the configuration illustrated in Fig. 1, the insertion needle 15 is only partly inserted into the elastomer element 17.

    [0064] The measurement apparatus 1 illustrated in Fig. 1 further comprises the mounting system 6 that includes a bar 21 having a (in Fig. 1 not illustrated) guiding trail and the mounting system 6 further comprises a supporting portion 23 at one end of the bar for supporting the supply needle 15. In particular, the supporting portion 23 of the mounting system 6 circumferentially engages the elastomer element 17, thereby clamping the elastomer element 17 while the supply needle 15 is partly or at least partly inserted into the through hole 19 of the elastomer element 17. The supporting portion 23 prevents the supply needle 15 from bending during usage of the moveable measurement cell 3.

    [0065] The mounting system 6 is rotatably fixed at a base 59.

    [0066] The internal construction of the first portion 5 is schematically illustrated in Fig. 2 in an explosive view. The first portion 5 comprises several layers including a first layer 25 including the measurement system 8 having the sensitive areas 10. The first portion 5 further comprises a second layer 27 which is with an upper layer attached to a lower surface of the first layer 25 and including a heating/temperature detection system 29 which comprises a heating wire 30. An upper surface 26 of a circuit board 28 has the measurement system 8 including the sensitive areas 10 attached to it. With this surface 26 onto which the sensitive areas 10 are attached, the first layer 25 is connected to the second portion 7 of the measurement cell 3, in order to close the reception space 9. Thus, when the sample is filled into the reception space 9, the sample is in direct contact with the sensitive areas 10 of the measurement system 8.

    [0067] The heating/temperature detection system 29 is attached to a circuit board 28 to form the second layer 27.

    [0068] The first portion 5 further comprises a third layer 31 comprising a copper plate 33 attached to a circuit board 28, in order to achieve a homogeneous temperature distribution across a region overlapping with a lateral extent of the reception space 9.

    [0069] The first portion 5 further comprises a fourth layer 35 including a shielding plate 37 and a circuit board 28 onto which the shielding plate 37 is attached. The fourth layer 35 is provided for electrical shielding purposes.

    [0070] The first portion 5 of the moveable measurement cell 3 further comprises a fifth layer 39 including a further heating/temperature detection system 41 (in particular including a heating wire in a meander configuration). In the embodiment illustrated in Fig. 2 the heating/detection system 29 has the heating wire 30 arranged in a lateral region only slightly larger than (or having substantially a same size as) the lateral extent of the reception space 9. Other dimensions are possible. The further heating/temperature detection system 41 is attached to a circuit board 28 which is thereby also included in the fifth layer of the first portion 5.

    [0071] The first portion 5 further comprises a sixth layer 43 only including a shielding plate 45 without having an additional circuit board attached.

    [0072] In other embodiments of the present invention, one or more layers may be omitted and/or the order of the arrangement of the layers may be different from the embodiment illustrated in Fig. 2. For example, the first portion 5 may include only the first layer and the second layer. In other embodiments, the first portion 5 of the moveable measurement cell 3 may include the first layer 25, the second layer 27 and a shielding layer, such as shielding layer 35 or shielding layer 43. Other combinations are possible. Further layers 31 and/or 37 may be omitted.

    [0073] Fig. 3 schematically illustrates (a part of) a measurement apparatus 1 (illustrated in Fig. 1 in projection) in a perspective view showing the second portion 7 in front of the first portion 5 as it is in particular used during washing/purging and calibrating the moveable measurement cell 3. The mounting system 6 includes a guiding trail 22 on the bar 21. The second portion 7 of the moveable measurement cell 3 has a trail engagement portion 47 here formed as two protrusions protruding through a slot provided by the guiding trail 22. The movable measurement cell 3 may be moved along the guiding trail 22 along the direction 49 which corresponds to the direction 51 of a longitudinal axis of the supply needle 15. During movement of the movable measurement cell 3, the supply needle 15 penetrates through the through hole 19 of the elastomer element 17, allowing to adjust a portion of the supply needle 15 to protrude beyond the supporting portion 23 of the mounting system 6.

    [0074] For supporting electrical energy to the functional elements and receiving electrical signals from the functional elements comprised in the first portion 5, a cable 53 is connected to respective contact terminals 55 of the first portion 5 of the moveable measurement cell 3. The contact terminals 55 may be contacted from different layers, such as layers 25, 27, 31, 35, 39, 43 by filling through holes 32 within the circuit boards 28 with electrically conducting material.

    [0075] Fig. 3 also illustrates an outlet 57 and an inlet 58 in communication with the reception space 9. The inlet 58 may serve to supply a solution for a reference electrode.

    [0076] During supply of a sample via the supply needle 15, a peristaltic pump may be connected (for example using a piping) to the outlet 57 and an end of the supply needle may be immersed in sample to be examined. The sample may then be drawn (by the action of the pump) through the lumen of the supply needle 15 into the reception space 9. Thereupon, the desired temperature (such as 37°C) may be adjusted by controlling the heating/temperature detection system 29 and/or also operating the further heating/temperature detection system 41. As soon as the temperature has reached the desired temperature and the temperature remains constant within +/- 0.2°C, the measurement system 8 may be operated to measure one or more constituents of the sample.

    [0077] During washing/purging and/or calibration procedure illustrated in Fig. 3 the measurement cell 3 is turned (using e.g. an electric motor in an automatic manner) such that the bar 21 and thus also the supply needle 15 is oriented vertically and such that the elastomer element 17 fits and contacts a washing plate 24, while the supply needle ends within the through hole 19 of the elastomer element 17. The washing plate 24 is fixed at the base 59 by not illustrated mounting elements. The elastomer element 17 presses onto the washing plate 24 and seals a washing and/or calibration solution 20 guided within a piping 18 from leaking out into the environment. Thereby an automatic washing of the supply needle 15 and the entire sample flow path within the measurement cell 3 is enabled and/or a calibration of the measurement system 8 is performed.

    [0078] Figs. 4, 5 and 6 illustrate different configurations of the measurement cell 3 for loading a sample from different sample sources.

    [0079] Fig. 4 illustrates the case, where a sample is to be loaded into the measurement cell 3 from a syringe 61. The measurement cell 3 is rotatably fixed at the base 59 at one point 63 so that the measurement cell 3 can be swiveled or rotated around the point 63. By rotating the measurement cell 3 around the point 63 it is possible to orient the supply needle 15 such that the end connected to the inlet 13 of the measurement cell 3 is vertically at a higher position, at a same position or at a lower position than another end of the supply needle into which the sample is supplied from an external source, here the syringe 61. In particular, in the situation illustrated in Fig. 4, the end of the supply needle 15 inserted into the syringe 61 is at a vertically lower position than the end of the supply needle 15 connected to the inlet 3 of the measurement cell 3. The bar 21 is at another end apart from the one end where the supporting portion 23 is arranged, rotatably fixed at a portion 65 of the base 59 that can rotate around a rotation center 67. The rotation may be realized using an electric motor that is controlled by (a controller of) the measurement apparatus 1. Rotation around the axis 67 may result in a rotation and/or translation of the measurement cell 3 including the supply needle 15, thereby in particular allowing to adjust different orientations of the supply needle 15.

    [0080] Fig. 5 illustrates the case, where a sample is to be loaded into the measurement cell 3 from an open container 69, such as an open vacutainer. The orientation of the supply needle 15 and thus the orientation of the measurement cell 3 is similar to the orientation illustrated in Fig. 4.

    [0081] Fig. 6 illustrates the situation in which a sample is to be loaded into the measurement cell 3 from a capillary 71. In this situation, the orientation of the supply needle 15 is different from the orientation of the supply needle illustrated in Figs. 4 and 5, In the situation illustrated in Fig. 6, the end of the supply needle 15 into which the sample from the capillary 71 is to be loaded (the side of the supply needle 15 close to the supporting portion 23) is at a vertically higher position than the end of the supply needle close to the inlet 13 of the measurement cell 3. Thereby, it is prohibited that sample runs out of the capillary 71 at an end 73 of the capillary, due to gravity that acts in a vertical downward direction.

    [0082] The base 59 further comprises an access slit 60 (illustrated in Figs. 4, 5, 6) through which the bar 21 and/or a part of an external container can slide.

    [0083] The measurement system 8 may comprise several sensors adapted to measure a concentration of at least one of, in particular ions of, K, Ca, Cl, Na, and/or to measure the pH-value, and/or to measure partial pressure of O2, and/or partial pressure of CO2 And/or to measure the concentrations of Glucose or Lactate.

    [0084] It should be noted that the term "comprising" does not exclude other elements or steps and "a" or "an" does not exclude a plurality. Also elements described in association with different embodiments may be combined. It should also be noted that reference signs in the claims should not be construed as limiting the scope of the claims.


    Claims

    1. Measurement apparatus (1) for measuring at least one constituent of a liquid sample, the measurement apparatus comprising:

    a movable measurement cell (3) including:

    a first portion (5) comprising a measurement system (8) having at least one sensitive area (10) at a surface (26) of the first portion (5);

    a second portion (7) comprising at least a part of a reception space (9) for the sample, the second portion being connected to the first portion such that the sample is in contact with the at least one sensitive area (10) when the sample is located within the reception space (9);

    a sample supply system (11) attached to an inlet (13) to allow supply of a liquid sample into the reception space (9); and

    a trail engagement portion (47),

    wherein the sample supply system (11) includes a supply needle (15) connected at one end to the inlet (13), the supply needle (15) having a lumen in communication with the reception space (9),

    the measurement apparatus further comprising:
    a mounting system (6) for movably mounting the movable measurement cell, the mounting system (6) including:

    a bar (21) having a guiding trail (22); and

    a supporting portion (23) at one end of the bar for supporting the supply needle (15),

    wherein the trail engagement portion (47) of the measurement cell (3) is engageable with the guiding trail (22) for moving the movable measurement cell in a direction (49) of the guiding trail (22) being along a longitudinal direction (51) of the supply needle (15).
     
    2. Measurement apparatus according to claim 1,
    wherein the sample supply system (11) further includes an elastomer element (17) having a through hole (19), the supply needle (15) being at least partially inserted into the through hole (19).
     
    3. Measurement apparatus according to claim 2,
    wherein the supply needle (15) is adapted to penetrate the through hole of the elastomer element (17) such as to allow supply of a sample into an end of the needle protruding from the elastomer element (17) from a syringe (61) or from a vacutainer (69),
    wherein the supply needle (15) when being partially inserted into the through hole (19) of the elastomer element (17) from one side allows supply of a sample from a capillary (71) while the capillary (71) is partially inserted into the through hole of the supply needle (15) from another side.
     
    4. Measurement apparatus according to one of the preceding claims,
    further comprising:
    a heating/temperature detection system (29) integrated into the first portion (5).
     
    5. Measurement apparatus according to the preceding claim,
    wherein the heating/temperature detection system (29) comprises a heating wire (30) temporarily alternatingly used for heating and temperature detection, wherein the wire is in particular arranged in meandering manner, and/or
    wherein the first portion (5) comprises a polymer formed as a printed circuit board (25, 27,31,35,39,43).
     
    6. Measurement apparatus according to the preceding claim, wherein the printed circuit board comprises several layers (25, 27,31,35,39,43) including:

    a first layer (25) including the measurement system (8);

    a second layer (27) having an upper surface attached to a lower surface of the first layer (25) and including the heating/temperature detection system (29),

    wherein an upper surface (26) of the first layer is attached, in particular using an adhesive, to the second portion (7) to partly close the reception space (9).
     
    7. Measurement apparatus according to the preceding claim, the several layers further including and being attached to each other in that order:

    a third layer (31) including a heat conducting material (33) for distributing heat generated by the heating/temperature detection system; and/or

    a fourth layer (35) including an electrically conducting material (37) for electrical shielding; and/or

    a fifth layer (39) including a further heating/temperature detection system (41); and/or

    a sixth layer (43) including an electrically conducting material (45) for electrical shielding.


     
    8. Measurement apparatus according to one of the preceding claims 5 to 7, wherein the polymer comprises a fibre-reinforced polymer,
    fibres of the fibre-reinforced polymer in particular including at least one of glass, carbon, aramid, basalt, paper, wood, asbestos,
    wherein the polymer in particular comprises a at least one of epoxy, vinylester, polyester thermosetting plastic, phenol formaldehyde.
     
    9. Measurement apparatus according to one of the preceding claims, wherein the second portion (7) is integrally formed, in particular manufactured by injection moulding, further in particular using polycarbonate, polyester, polyamides and blends thereof.
     
    10. Measurement apparatus according to one of the preceding claims, wherein the supporting portion (23) of the mounting system (6) is adapted to circumferentially engage the elastomer element (17), thereby clamping the elastomer element while the supply needle (15) is at least partially inserted into the through hole (19) of the elastomer element (17).
     
    11. Measurement apparatus according to one of the preceding claims, the measurement apparatus further comprising:
    a base (59),
    wherein the measurement cell (3) is rotatably fixed at one point (63) to the base (59),
    thereby allowing to pivot the measurement cell around the one point (63) to orient the supply needle (15) such that the end connected to the inlet (13) of the measurement cell (3) is selectively vertically at a higher position, at a same position or at a lower position than another end of the supply needle (15) into which the sample is supplied from an external source (61, 69, 71), wherein the bar (21) is in particular, at another end apart from the one end where the supporting portion is arranged, rotatably fixed at a portion (65) of the base (59) that can rotate around a rotation center (67).
     
    12. Measurement apparatus according to the preceding claim, the measurement apparatus further comprising:
    a washing plate (24), being fixed at the base (59) and having a through hole (16),
    wherein when the movable measurement cell (3) is appropriately pivoted, the elastomer element (17) contacts the washing plate (24) and seals fluid (20) supplied to the through hole (16) of the washing hole such that the fluid is guided through the through hole of the elastomer element (17) and the lumen of the supply needle (15) to enter the reception space (9).
     
    13. Method for manufacturing a measurement apparatus (1) for measuring at least one constituent of a liquid sample, the method comprising:
    manufacturing a movable measurement cell (3) comprising:

    manufacturing a first portion (5) comprising a measurement system (8) having at least one sensitive area (10) at a surface of the first portion;

    manufacturing, in particular by injection moulding, a second portion (7) comprising at least a part of a reception space (9) for the sample;

    connecting the second portion (7) and the first portion (5) such that the sample may come in contact with the at least one sensitive area (10) when the sample is located within the reception space (9);

    providing a trail engagement portion (47); and

    attaching a sample supply system (11) to an inlet (13) to allow supply of a liquid sample into the reception space (9), wherein the sample supply system (11) includes a supply needle (15) connected at one end to the inlet (13), the supply needle (15) having a lumen in communication with the reception space (9),

    the method further comprising:
    providing a mounting system (6) for movably mounting the movable measurement cell, the mounting system (6) including:

    a bar (21) having a guiding trail (22); and

    a supporting portion (23) at one end of the bar for supporting the supply needle (15),

    wherein the trail engagement portion (47) of the measurement cell (3) is engageable with the guiding trail (22) for moving the movable measurement cell in a direction (49) of the guiding trail (22) being along a longitudinal direction (51) of the supply needle (15).
     
    14. Method for measuring at least one constituent of a liquid sample, the method comprising:

    providing a measurement apparatus according to one of claims 1 to 12;

    moving the movable measurement cell (3) such that the sample supply system (11) is in a configuration, in particular a position and/or an orientation, to allow feeding a liquid sample from an external source (61, 69, 71) into the sample supply system (11).


     


    Ansprüche

    1. Messvorrichtung (1) zum Messen zumindest eines Bestandteiles von einer flüssigen Probe, die Messvorrichtung aufweisend:
    eine bewegliche Messzelle (3) enthaltend:

    einen ersten Teil (5) aufweisend ein Messsystem (8), welches zumindest einen sensitiven Bereich (10) hat an einer Oberfläche (26) von dem ersten Teil (5);

    einen zweiten Teil (7) aufweisend zumindest einen Teil von einem Empfangsraum (9) für die Probe,

    wobei der zweite Teil verbunden ist zu dem ersten Teil, sodass die Probe in Kontakt ist mit dem zumindest einen sensitiven Bereich (10), wenn die Probe lokalisiert ist innerhalb des Empfangsraumes (9);

    ein Probe Liefersystem (11), welches angebracht ist an einem Einlass (13) zum Zulassen von Liefern von einer flüssigen Probe in den Empfangsraum (9); und

    einen Spur Einklinkteil (47),

    wobei das Probe Liefersystem (11) enthält eine Liefernadel (15), welche verbunden ist an einem Ende zu dem Einlass (13),
    wobei die Liefernadel (15) einen Lumen hat in Kommunikation mit dem Empfangsraum (9),
    die Messvorrichtung ferner aufweisend;
    ein Montagesystem (6) zum beweglichen Montieren der beweglichen Messzelle, das Montagesystem (6) aufweisend:

    eine Strebe (21) aufweisend eine Führungsspur (22); und

    einen Unterstützungsteil (22) an einem Ende von der Strebe zum Unterstützen der Liefernadel (15),

    wobei der Spur Einklinkteil (47) von der Messzelle (3) einklinkbar ist mit der Führungsspur (22) zum Bewegen der beweglichen Messzelle in eine Richtung (49) von der Führungsspur (22), welche entlang einer longitudinalen Richtung (51) von der Liefernadel (15) ist.
     
    2. Messvorrichtung gemäß Anspruch 1,
    wobei das Probe Liefersystem (11) ferner enthält ein Elastomerelement (17), welches eine Durchgangsbohrung (19) hat, wobei die Liefernadel (15) zumindest teilweise eingeführt ist in die Durchgangsbohrung (19).
     
    3. Messvorrichtung gemäß Anspruch 2,
    wobei die Liefernadel (15) adaptiert ist zum Durchstechen der Durchgangsbohrung von dem Elastomerelement (17), um so zuzulassen Liefern von einer Probe in ein Ende von der Nadel, welche hinausragt aus dem Elastomerelement (17) von einer Spritze (61) oder von einem Vacutainer (69), wobei die Liefernadel (15), wenn diese teilweise eingeführt ist in die Durchgangsbohrung (19) von dem Elastomerelement (17) von einer Seite, Liefern von einer Probe von einem Kapillarrohr (71) zulässt, während das Kapillarrohr (71) teilweise eingeführt ist in die Durchgangsbohrung von der Liefernadel (15) von einer anderen Seite.
     
    4. Messvorrichtung gemäß einem der vorherigen Ansprüche, ferner aufweisend:
    ein Wärme/Temperatur Detektionssystem (29), welches integriert ist in den ersten Teil (5).
     
    5. Messvorrichtung gemäß des vorherigen Anspruches,
    wobei das Wärme/Temperatur Detektionssystem (29) aufweist einen Heizdraht (30), welcher temporär wechselnd genutzt wird zur Wärme und Temperaturdetektion,
    wobei der Draht im Wesentlichen angeordnet ist in schlangenförmiger Weise, und/oder
    wobei der erste Teil (5) aufweist ein Polymer, welches ausgebildet ist wie eine Leiterplatte (25, 27, 31, 35, 39, 43).
     
    6. Messvorrichtung gemäß des vorherigen Anspruchs,
    wobei die Leiterplatte aufweist mehrere Schichten (25, 27, 31, 35, 39, 43) enthaltend:

    eine erste Schicht (25), welche das Messsystem (8) enthält;

    eine zweite Schicht (27), welche eine obere Oberfläche hat, welche angebracht ist an einer untern Oberfläche von der ersten Schicht (25), und welche das Wärme/ Temperatur Detektionssystem (29) enthält,

    wobei eine obere Oberfläche (26) von der ersten Schicht angebracht ist, im Wesentlichen verwendend ein Haftmittel, an dem zweiten Teil (7) zum teilweise Schließen des Empfangsraumes (9).
     
    7. Messvorrichtung gemäß des vorherigen Anspruchs,
    wobei die mehreren Schichten ferner enthalten und angebracht sind zu einander in dieser Folge:

    eine dritte Schicht (31), welche enthält ein Wärme leitfähiges Material (33) zum Verteilen von Wärme, welche generiert wird mittels des Wärme/Temperatur Detektionssystems; und/oder

    eine vierte Schicht (35), welche enthält ein elektrisch leitfähiges Material (37) zum elektrischen Abschirmen; und/oder

    eine fünfte Schicht (39), welche enthält ein weiteres Wärme/Temperatur Detektionssystem (41); und/oder

    eine sechste Schicht (43), welche enthält ein elektrisch leitfähiges Material (45) zum elektrischen Abschirmen.


     
    8. Messvorrichtung gemäß einem der vorherigen Ansprüche 5 bis 7,
    wobei das Polymer aufweist ein faserverstärktes Polymer, wobei Fasern von dem faserverstärkten Polymer im Wesentlichen enthalten zumindest eines von Glas, Karbon, Aramid, Basalt, Papier, Holz, Asbest,
    wobei das Polymer im Wesentlichen aufweist zumindest eines von Epoxid, Vinylester, Polyester duroplastisches Plastik, Phenol Formaldehyd.
     
    9. Messvorrichtung gemäß einem der vorherigen Ansprüche,
    wobei der zweite Teil (7) integral ausgebildet ist, im Wesentlichen hergestellt mittels Spritzgussverfahrens, ferner im Wesentlichen verwendend Polycarbonate, Polyester, Polyamide und Blenden davon.
     
    10. Messvorrichtung gemäß einem der vorherigen Ansprüche,
    wobei der Unterstützungsteil (23) von dem Montagesystem (6) adaptiert ist zum peripheren Einklinken des Elastomerelementes (17), damit das Elastomerelement, solange die Liefernadel (15) zumindest teilweise eingeführt ist in die Durchgangsbohrung (19) von dem Elastomerelement (17), festgeklemmt wird.
     
    11. Messvorrichtung gemäß einem der vorherigen Ansprüche, die Messvorrichtung ferner aufweisend:
    eine Basis (59),
    wobei die Messzelle (3) drehbar befestigt ist an einem Punkt (63) mit der Basis (59), um damit ein Drehen der Messzelle um den einen Punkt (63) herum zu erlauben, um die Liefernadel (15) zu orientieren, sodass das Ende, welches verbunden ist zu dem Einlass (13) von der Messzelle (3), selektiv vertikal an einer höheren Position, an einer gleichen Position oder an einer niedrigeren Position ist als ein anderes Ende von der Liefernadel (15), in welcher die Probe eingespeist wird von einer externen Quelle (61, 69, 71), wobei die Strebe (21) im Wesentlichen, an einem anderen Ende abseits von dem einen Ende, wo der Unterstützungsteil angeordnet ist, drehbar befestigt ist an einem Teil (65) von der Basis (59), welcher rotieren kann um ein Rotationszentrum (67) herum.
     
    12. Messvorrichtung gemäß dem vorherigen Anspruch, die Messvorrichtung ferner aufweisend:
    eine Waschplatte (24), welche befestigt ist an der Basis (59) und eine Durchgangsbohrung (16) hat,
    wobei, wenn die bewegliche Messzelle (3) entsprechend gedreht ist, das Elastomerelement (17) die Waschplatte (24) kontaktiert und Flüssigkeit (20) abdichtet, welche geliefert wird zu der Durchgangsbohrung (16) von dem Waschloch, sodass das Fluid geleitet wird durch die Durchgangsbohrung von dem Elastomerelement (17) und das Lumen von der Liefernadel (15) zum Betreten des Empfangsraumes (9).
     
    13. Verfahren zum Herstellen einer Messvorrichtung (1) zum Messen zumindest eines Bestandteiles von einer flüssigen Probe, das Verfahren aufweisend:
    Herstellen einer beweglichen Messzelle (3) aufweisend:

    Herstellen eines ersten Teiles (5) aufweisend ein Messsystem (8), welches zumindest einen sensitiven Bereich (10) hat an einer Oberfläche von dem ersten Teil;

    Herstellen, im Wesentlichen mittels Spritzgussverfahrens, eines zweiten Teiles (7) aufweisend zumindest einen Teil von einem Empfangsraum (9) für die Probe;

    Verbinden des zweiten Teils (7) und des ersten Teils (5), sodass die Probe in Kontakt kommen mag mit dem zumindest einen sensitiven Bereich (10), wenn die Probe lokalisiert ist innerhalb des Empfangsraumes (9);

    Bereitstellen eines Spur Einklinkteiles (47); und

    Anbringen eines Probe Liefersystems (11) zu einem Einlass (13) zum Zulassen von Liefern einer flüssigen Probe in den Empfangsraum (9), wobei das Probe Liefersystem (11) enthält eine Liefernadel (15), welche verbunden ist an einem Ende zu dem Einlass (13), wobei die Liefernadel (15) eine Lumen hat in Kommunikation mit dem Empfangsraum (9),

    das Verfahren ferner aufweisend:
    Bereitstellen eines Montagesystems (6) zum beweglichen Montieren der beweglichen Messzelle, das Montagesystem (6) enthaltend:

    eine Strebe (21), welche eine Führungsspur (22) hat; und

    einen Unterstützungsteil (23) an einem Ende von der Strebe zum Unterstützen der Liefernadel (15),

    wobei der Spur Einklinkteil (47) von der Messzelle (3) einklingbar ist mit der Führungsspur (22) zum Bewegen der beweglichen Messzelle in eine Richtung (49) von der Führungsspur (22), welche entlang einer longitudinalen Richtung (51) von der Liefernadel (15) ist.
     
    14. Das Verfahren zum Messen zumindest eines Bestandteils von einer flüssigen Probe, das Verfahren aufweisend:

    Bereitstellen einer Messvorrichtung gemäß einem der Ansprüche 1 bis 12;

    Bewegen der beweglichen Messzelle (3), sodass das Probe Liefersystem (11) in einer Konfiguration ist, im Wesentlichen eine Position und/oder eine Orientierung, zum Zulassen von Speisung einer flüssigen Probe von einer externen Quelle (61, 69, 71) in das Probe Liefersystem (11).


     


    Revendications

    1. Appareil de mesure (1) pour mesurer au moins un constituant d'un échantillon de liquide, l'appareil de mesure comprenant :
    une cellule de mesure mobile (3) incluant :

    une première portion (5) comprenant un système de mesure (8) ayant au moins une zone sensible (10) au niveau d'une surface (26) de la première portion (5) ;

    une seconde portion (7) comprenant au moins une partie d'un espace de réception (9) pour l'échantillon, la seconde portion étant reliée à la première portion de sorte que l'échantillon soit en contact avec l'au moins une zone sensible (10) lorsque l'échantillon se trouve au sein de l'espace de réception (9) ;

    un système d'approvisionnement en échantillon (11) raccordé à une entrée (13) pour permettre l'approvisionnement en un échantillon de liquide dans l'espace de réception (9) ; et

    une portion de mise en prise de rail (47),

    dans lequel le système d'approvisionnement en échantillon (11) inclut une aiguille d'approvisionnement (15) reliée au niveau d'une extrémité à l'entrée (13), l'aiguille d'approvisionnement (15) ayant une lumière en communication avec l'espace de réception (9),

    l'appareil de mesure comprenant en outre :
    un système de montage (6) pour monter de manière mobile la cellule de mesure mobile, le système de montage (6) incluant :

    une barre (21) ayant un rail de guidage (22) ; et

    une portion de support (23) au niveau d'une extrémité de la barre pour supporter l'aiguille d'approvisionnement (15),

    dans lequel la portion de mise en prise de rail (47) de la cellule de mesure (3) peut être mise en prise avec le rail de guidage (22) pour déplacer la cellule de mesure mobile dans une direction (49) du rail de guidage (22) qui est le long d'une direction longitudinale (51) de l'aiguille d'approvisionnement (15).


     
    2. Appareil de mesure selon la revendication 1,
    dans lequel le système d'approvisionnement en échantillon (11) inclut en outre un élément en élastomère (17) ayant un trou traversant (19), l'aiguille d'approvisionnement (15) étant au moins partiellement insérée dans le trou traversant (19).
     
    3. Appareil de mesure selon la revendication 2,
    dans lequel l'aiguille d'approvisionnement (15) est adaptée pour pénétrer dans le trou traversant de l'élément en élastomère (17) de sorte à permettre un approvisionnement en échantillon dans une extrémité de l'aiguille faisant saillie de l'élément en élastomère (17) à partir d'une seringue (61) ou à partir d'un tube vacutainer (69),
    dans lequel l'aiguille d'approvisionnement (15) lorsqu'elle est partiellement insérée dans le trou traversant (19) de l'élément en élastomère (17) depuis un côté permet un approvisionnement en échantillon à partir d'un capillaire (71) tandis que le capillaire (71) est partiellement inséré dans le trou traversant de l'aiguille d'approvisionnement (15) depuis un autre côté.
     
    4. Appareil de mesure selon l'une des revendications précédentes, comprenant en outre :
    un système de réchauffement/détection de température (29) intégré dans la première portion (5).
     
    5. Appareil de mesure selon la revendication précédente,
    dans lequel le système de réchauffement/détection de température (29) comprend un filament chauffant (30) utilisé temporairement et en alternance pour une détection de réchauffement et de température, dans lequel le filament est en particulier agencé de manière sinueuse, et/ou
    dans lequel la première portion (5) comprend un polymère formé en tant que carte de circuit imprimé (25, 27, 31, 35, 39, 43).
     
    6. Appareil de mesure selon la revendication précédente, dans lequel la carte de circuit imprimé comprend plusieurs couches (25, 27, 31, 35, 39, 43) incluant :

    une première couche (25) incluant le système de mesure (8) ;

    une seconde couche (27) ayant une surface supérieure raccordée à une surface inférieure de la première couche (25) et incluant le système de réchauffement/détection de température (29),

    dans lequel une surface supérieure (26) de la première couche est raccordée, en particulier à l'aide d'un adhésif, à la seconde portion (7) pour fermer partiellement l'espace de réception (9).


     
    7. Appareil de mesure selon la revendication précédente, les plusieurs couches incluant en outre et étant raccordées les unes aux autres dans cet ordre :

    une troisième couche (31) incluant un matériau conducteur de chaleur (33) pour distribuer la chaleur générée par le système de réchauffement/détection de température ; et/ou

    une quatrième couche (35) incluant un matériau électriquement conducteur (37) pour une protection électrique ; et/ou

    une cinquième couche (39) incluant un système de réchauffement/détection de température supplémentaire (41) ; et/ou

    une sixième couche (43) incluant un matériau électriquement conducteur (45) pour une protection électrique.


     
    8. Appareil de mesure selon l'une des revendications précédentes 5 à 7, dans lequel le polymère comprend un polymère renforcé par des fibres, des fibres du polymère renforcé par des fibres incluant en particulier au moins l'un parmi le verre, le carbone, l'aramide, le basalte, le papier, le bois, l'amiante, dans lequel le polymère comprend en particulier au moins l'un parmi l'époxy, le vinylester, le plastique thermodurcissable de polyester, le phénol-formaldéhyde.
     
    9. Appareil de mesure selon l'une des revendications précédentes, dans lequel la seconde portion (7) est formée d'un seul tenant, en particulier fabriquée par moulage par injection, en outre en particulier à l'aide de polycarbonate, de polyester, de polyamides et de mélanges de ceux-ci.
     
    10. Appareil de mesure selon l'une des revendications précédentes, dans lequel la portion de support (23) du système de montage (6) est adaptée pour se mettre en prise circonférentiellement avec l'élément en élastomère (17), serrant ainsi l'élément en élastomère tandis que l'aiguille d'approvisionnement (15) est au moins partiellement insérée dans le trou traversant (19) de l'élément en élastomère (17).
     
    11. Appareil de mesure selon l'une des revendications précédentes, l'appareil de mesure comprenant en outre :

    une base (59),

    dans lequel la cellule de mesure (3) est fixée de manière rotative au niveau d'un point (63) à la base (59),

    permettant ainsi de faire pivoter la cellule de mesure autour de l'un point (63) pour orienter l'aiguille d'approvisionnement (15) de sorte que l'extrémité reliée à l'entrée (13) de la cellule de mesure (3) soit sélectivement verticalement dans une position plus haute, dans une même position ou dans une position plus basse qu'une autre extrémité de l'aiguille d'approvisionnement (15) approvisionnée en l'échantillon à partir d'une source externe (61, 69, 71), dans lequel la barre (21) est en particulier, au niveau d'une autre extrémité espacée de l'une extrémité où la portion de support est agencée, fixée de manière rotative au niveau d'une portion (65) de la base (59) qui peut tourner autour d'un centre de rotation (67).


     
    12. Appareil de mesure selon la revendication précédente, l'appareil de mesure comprenant en outre :

    un plateau de lavage (24), qui est fixé au niveau de la base (59) et ayant un trou traversant (16),

    dans lequel lorsque la cellule de mesure mobile (3) est pivotée de manière appropriée, l'élément en élastomère (17) entre en contact avec le plateau de lavage (24) et scelle un fluide (20) en lequel est approvisionné le trou traversant (16) du trou de lavage de sorte que le fluide soit guidé à travers le trou traversant de l'élément en élastomère (17) et la lumière de l'aiguille d'approvisionnement (15) pour entrer dans l'espace de réception (9).


     
    13. Procédé pour fabriquer un appareil de mesure (1) pour mesurer au moins un constituant d'un échantillon de liquide, le procédé comprenant :
    la fabrication d'une cellule de mesure mobile (3) comprenant :

    la fabrication d'une première portion (5) comprenant un système de mesure (8) ayant au moins une zone sensible (10) au niveau d'une surface de la première portion ;

    la fabrication, en particulier par moulage par injection, d'une seconde portion (7) comprenant au moins une partie d'un espace de réception (9) pour l'échantillon ;

    la liaison de la seconde portion (7) et de la première portion (5) de sorte que l'échantillon puisse entrer en contact avec l'au moins une zone sensible (10) lorsque l'échantillon se trouve au sein de l'espace de réception (9) ;

    la fourniture d'une portion de mise en prise de rail (47) ; et

    le raccordement d'un système d'approvisionnement en échantillon (11) à une entrée (13) pour permettre un approvisionnement en un échantillon de liquide dans l'espace de réception (9), dans lequel le système d'approvisionnement en échantillon (11) inclut une aiguille d'approvisionnement (15) reliée au niveau d'une extrémité à l'entrée (13), l'aiguille d'approvisionnement (15) ayant une lumière en communication avec l'espace de réception (9),

    le procédé comprenant en outre :
    la fourniture d'un système de montage (6) pour monter de manière mobile la cellule de mesure mobile, le système de montage (6) incluant :

    une barre (21) ayant un rail de guidage (22) ; et

    une portion de support (23) au niveau d'une extrémité de la barre pour supporter l'aiguille d'approvisionnement (15),

    dans lequel la portion de mise en prise de rail (47) de la cellule de mesure (3) peut être mise en prise avec le rail de guidage (22) pour déplacer la cellule de mesure mobile dans une direction (49) du rail de guidage (22) qui est le long d'une direction longitudinale (51) de l'aiguille d'approvisionnement (15).


     
    14. Procédé pour mesurer au moins un constituant d'un échantillon de liquide, le procédé comprenant :

    la fourniture d'un appareil de mesure selon l'une des revendications 1 à 12 ;

    le déplacement de la cellule de mesure mobile (3) de sorte que le système d'approvisionnement en échantillon (11) soit dans une configuration, en particulier une position et/ou une orientation, pour permettre un approvisionnement en un échantillon de liquide depuis une source externe (61, 69, 71) dans le système d'approvisionnement en échantillon (11).


     




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    REFERENCES CITED IN THE DESCRIPTION



    This list of references cited by the applicant is for the reader's convenience only. It does not form part of the European patent document. Even though great care has been taken in compiling the references, errors or omissions cannot be excluded and the EPO disclaims all liability in this regard.

    Patent documents cited in the description