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Using VR-Technologies to Improve Manual Liquid Handling Processes
Process reliability and quality assurance are two key factors for analytical and biotechnological labs. There are different methods to reach a high level for these factors. One of the solutions is to introduce fully automated liquid handling systems and pipetting robots which can store the pipette parameters and process data such as volume, dispensing and/or aspirating position. But pipette robots are not always the best solutions for all liquid handling applications, because a lot of programming work is needed to implement new pipetting processes. This is the reason why research labs use manual liquid handling tools. But there is a large disadvantage of these manual systems because they lack monitoring and storing of important pipetting process data. Deviations of the pipette position during the handling process cannot or only insufficiently be located.
The Fraunhofer IPA has developed a new tool for the monitoring of manual liquid handling processes. Thistool, in combination with digital pipettes, can control and monitor the complete pipetting process. It is also possible to locate the exact position of the pipette tip, check and archive the volume and whether the liquid is dispensed or aspirated. In addition to the application aforementioned, it is also possible to program pipetting robots in an intuitive way. A lab assistant does not have to know how to use the software for programming the robot, he only moves the pipette in the way he used to and the movements will be translated and implemented in a program automatically.