Los Gatos Research portable methane analyzer measures at rates up to 1 Hz

May 22, 2012
A portable methane (CH4) analyzer offers parts-per-billion (ppb) precision in a compact, rugged, crush-proof package.

A portable methane (CH4) analyzer offers parts-per-billion (ppb) precision in a compact, rugged, crush-proof package. It reports CH4 and H2O concentrations in real time, continuously at user-selectable rates up to 1 Hz. It is based on Off-axis Integrated Cavity Output Spectroscopy (OA-ICOS) technology, a fourth-generation, cavity-enhanced laser absorption technique.
Los Gatos Research
Mountain View, CA


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Ultra-Portable Methane Analyzer Enables Economical Measurements Anywhere

Los Gatos Research (LGR), the leader in precision trace gas analyzers, has expanded the company’s range of ultra-portable greenhouse gas analyzers (UGGA) by introducing the first in a series of economical, single-gas analyzers. This new, ultra-portable methane (CH4) analyzer offers parts per billion precision and accuracy in a rugged, crush-proof and compact package, measuring only 18.5 in. x 14 in. x 7 in. (47 cm x 36 cm x 18 cm), and weighing less than 19 kg. In addition, the analyzer consumes less than 60 watts and can operate natively on either AC or DC (battery) power. It features an extremely wide linear dynamic range - an Extended Range option even enables high precision measurement of CH4 concentrations as high as 10%, while maintaining ppb sensitivity. This economical analyzer reports CH4 and H2O concentrations in real time, continuously at user selectable rates as fast as 1 Hz. These measurements are unaffected by crosstalk from other common atmospheric gas, hydrocarbons, or combustion-generated gases (like CO, CO2, O2). For example, the new methane analyzer automatically corrects the real-time CH4 measurements for all water vapor dilution and spectroscopic effects, and reports the concentration as a dry mole fraction directly and without any data post processing. This eliminates the need for sample drying to achieve highest accuracy. Moreover, unlike other technologies which require much higher power and long warm-up times, LGR’s analyzers start reporting reliable data in less than 2 minutes after power on. This makes them ideal for portable operation (e.g., natural gas leak detection, compliance monitoring) – in a vehicle, plane or ship – as well as for remote, extended use at challenging locations with limited power (with full control via the Internet).

LGR President Dr. Douglas Baer explains that, “The unique combination of portability, remote operation, data archiving, absolute accuracy, and huge dynamic range make this rugged, ultraportable methane analyzer ideally suited for use by federal, state and local monitoring agencies, as well as natural gas suppliers, where operational flexibility and reliability are paramount requirements. And, we believe that the significantly lower cost of this single-gas instrument will enable its use by a broad spectrum of users, including teaching institutions and other organizations with very limited budgets.”

LGR precision gas analyzers are based on the company’s patented Off-axis Integrated Cavity Output Spectroscopy (OA-ICOS) technology, a fourth generation, cavity-enhanced laser absorption technique. This unique approach is more rugged, more precise and simpler to service than earlier cavity-enhanced techniques, such as conventional cavity ringdown spectroscopy (CRDS), because the performance of OA-ICOS does not need ultra-precise alignment or sub nanometer stability of its optics, or a high degree of thermal control. This ensures higher absolute accuracy, longer maintenance intervals, higher reliability and reduced cost of ownership.

About Los Gatos Research

LGR (www.LGRinc.com) makes the world’s most precise, rugged and reliable instruments for measurements of trace gases and isotopes. LGR instruments have been deployed by scientists for acquiring the most accurate measurements possible on all seven continents, in unmanned aerial vehicles, in mobile laboratories, on research and commercial aircraft, and in undersea vehicles.


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