Hach spectrophotometer – 27 years old and still going strong

Worthy winner of competition to find the oldest operational Hach or Lange photometer in Ireland

To celebrate the launch of the new spectrophotometers DR 3900 and DR 6000, instrumentation specialist Hach Lange launched a competition to find the oldest operational Hach or Lange photometer in Ireland.

Extensive research revealed that the contestant with the oldest instrument, and winner of a brand new DR 3900, is Michael Whelan of Wicklow County Council with his DR3 spectrophotometer purchased in 1985.

Whelan previously used the DR3 at a water treatment plant for testing colour, turbidity, pH, residual aluminium, and residual fluoride. “Amazingly, we have only ever had to replace the bulb, such is the quality of the Hach instruments,” he said. “I am looking forward to using the DR3900 with barcode identification because water quality testing will be easier and quicker.”

The DR 3900 employs barcode recognition to ensure that every sample is tested for the correct parameter. The instrument will also read the sample barcode to determine the batch number and expiry date, and this data will also be assigned to the analytical result.

In addition, the latest RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) technology is enabled to ensure that an accurate, reliable, traceable record is created for every sample. This means that users are able to define their own “set points” for specific sampling locations, so that any results falling outside these points will be flagged immediately.

The DR3900 can also be used to calibrate online instruments automatically. It can detect expired cuvettes and can even update its internal methodology from the RFID label on the cuvette boxes.

Niall O’Brien from Hach Lange’s offices in Dublin congratulated Whelan on his success (and made a note in his diary to contact the Wicklow laboratory to see if they need a replacement spectrophotometer in the year 2039!).

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