The gas orifice is at the very tip of the nebulizer. It is made of Teflon® which is VERY SOFT. This tip is very easily damaged and should NEVER be touched with fingers, tissues, or anything else. If the tip is accidentally touched, and the nebulizer continues to operate, then it is still functional, and its use can be safely continued.
2. Dropping and Breakage
The Burgener Nebulizer body is 100% Teflon® . Generally it will not break. If it is dropped such that the tip is deformed, then it will be irreparably damaged. If it continues to operate after being dropped, then it has not been affected, and its use can be safely continued.
Your new Burgener Nebulizer is unique. It should give you a long and convenient service on almost any liquid you can pump to it. The operation and care of your nebulizer is different from glass nebulizers in several important ways.
1. Washing Your Nebulizer:
Please DO NOT wash your nebulizer in acid or solvents to 'prevent salt build up'. Teflon® does not wet, so salts do not build up. For the longest life and best performance, wash your nebulizer by simply running water as a sample for 10 minutes at the end of the day before shutting down the plasma. Any other form of washing is excessive, unnecessary, of no advantage, and often detrimental. DO NOT remove the filter in the back of the nebulizer under any circumstance. DO NOT immerse the nebulizer completely in any liquid (water, acid, or any other solvent). It would cause saturation of the filter plug and plugging of the gas orifice.
2. Optimum Gas Flow Rate & Pressures:
Burgener Nebulizers will operate safely at pressures up to 80 psi. Higher pressures produce finer mists, and larger Argon flow rates. For the T2002, on a TJA TRACE approx. 30 - 40 psi (0.8 l/min) is the normal range. For the Model 50, approx. 45 - 50 psi (1 l/min) is normal. Test it at various pressures to optimize.
The exact pressure depends on the nebulizer, as well as the type of center tube being used in the plasma torch. Each nebulizer must be tested by looking for the pressure which gives optimum precision. This will generally be found to be a narrow range of 1 to 2 psi. An initial pressure can generally be found by observing the central channel of the plasma while aspirating a solution of 1,000 ppm Y. Adjust the pressure until the red tongue is just level with the upper turn of the work coil. This is easy to observe with a relatively new torch, but, once the torch becomes discolored, it may be difficult to see this tongue. In this case, there is little alternative but to begin at 25 psi and increase at 2 psi intervals until the best precision is found. At the optimum pressure, precision on an ICAP 61E Trace should be around 0.5% for 1 ppm of most of the elements in the TJA QC-19 Test Solution.
3. Sample Uptake:
Normally, 1 - 2 ml/min seems to work best. For the TJA TRACE use about 2 ml/min. For gas flows near 1 l/min., some systems optimize at less than 1 ml/min. You may pump faster, (4 or 5 ml/min will not harm the nebulizer), but there may not be increased signal, & you may drown the torch. We recommend orange/orange peristaltic pump tubing with a fast rotating rate rather than larger tubing at a slower rate. Slower rates produce larger surges. For lower pressure settings, an Increase in sample rate may improve %RSD.
4. Humidified Argon:
The Burgener Nebulizer is 100 % Teflon® . Teflon® doesn't wet, so salts do not begin to form at the gas orifice. This allows you to run high salts without the tip plugging. It also saves you the nuisance of having to run Humidified Argon to the nebulizer. You may use humidified Argon, but it will not improve the nebulizer's performance.
5. Using Surfactants:
Teflon® doesn't wet. This causes a slight pulsation in the nebulizer's output, related to the pump's pulsation. DO NOT soak the nebulizer in surfactants to decrease the pulsing. You may succeed, but the surfactant will also allow salts to form at the gas orifice, and plug the orifice. The pulsation is generally well averaged out in the chamber's mixing of the mist as it travels to the torch.
6. The Surge Suppressor:
The sample capillary tube should be 9" or longer. Short capillary tubes cause greater surges. The supplied Surge Suppressor is simply a large diameter Peristaltic pump tubing with small pump tubing stuffed in the ends. It may reduce the pulsations considerably, but it is not always necessary. You can also use 'official' surge suppressors, but we have not seen significant differences with them.
Many chambers have baffles designed for nebulizers that extend a shorter length into the chamber. You may have to move the baffle farther into the chamber, or you may require a different style of chamber. A baffle too close to the nebulizer catches fine and coarse mists, and severely degrades the nebulizer's performance.
8. Adjusting your Plasma Height:
The Burgener Nebulizer will produce excellent mists over a large pressure range. You can adjust the plasma height by varying the nebulizer pressure, with little change in sensitivity due to the nebulizer.
9. Droppage and Breaking:
The Burgener Nebulizer is 100 % Teflon® . If you drop it, it may be dented where it hits. If you dent the body of the nebulizer, it will not effect its performance. If the tip is dented, it may destroy the nebulizer. If it works after dropping, it has not been effected, and may be continued to be relied upon.
10. Major Caution:
The gas orifice is at the very tip of the nebulizer. Teflon® is VERY SOFT. Touching the tip with your finger, a tissue paper, or anything else MAY DESTROY your nebulizer. The only major caution on a Burgener Nebulizer is DO NOT TOUCH THE TIP. Having said that, you will accidentally touch the tip sometimes. If it works afterwards you have done no harm. If the gas orifice is untouched, the nebulizer will not be harmed.
11. Nebulizer Orientation:
Some nebulizers are sensitive to orientation. The normally correct orientation is with the capillary tube extending from the body facing upward. However, some nebulizers have been found to give better performance when this capillary tube faces downward. Be sure to check orientation, once the apparently optimum nebulizer pressure has been found to determine which gives the better results.
How to replace the capillary tubing:
Clearing and Replacing the Capillary Tubing
The Burgener Nebulizer is designed with the Patented Enhanced Parallel Path configuration. The only portion of the sample path that is actually part of the nebulizer is at the tip. It will not plug with dust or sand or other tiny particles. However, the capillary tubing may occasionally plug. Generally, the capillary tubing plugs at the joint between the pump tubing and the capillary tubing. To clear such a plug, just cut off 1 mm of the capillary tubing closest to the pump, and use it again. For plugs in the middle of the tubing, or eventually, if the tubing is getting too short, you will have to replace the capillary tubing.
TO REPLACE THE CAPILLARY TUBING:
1. Pull out the old capillary tubing. It is just held in place by tension.
2. Take a piece of new tubing, e.g. Polyethylene Tubing, with O.D. 1.09 mm (0.043 "); I.D. .38 mm (0.015 "). Measure out the desired length (About 15 " or 38 cm).
3. Wrap it around your fingers and stretch out about 4 inches to about 1/2 its original diameter.
4. Push the stretched portion through the Nebulizer's sample path until it extends out past the end of the nebulizer. Use the stretched portion to pull unstretched tubing past the tip of the nebulizer.
5. Cut off the stretched portion. Pull back the unstretched portion, until the tubing is recessed about .25 " (about 6 mm) from the tip. The distance of the recess is not critical, as long as it is about .25 " or more.