CHRONOS 4.4 - for CTC PAL samplers

CHRONOS controls PAL samplers in an efficient and intelligent way and enhances sample throughput considerably.


Most chromatographic or spectrometric investigation processes in the area of instrumental analysis are characterised by the use of autosamplers. The purpose of automation is to increase throughput without the need for additional personnel. Up to now, the samples have been worked through automatically in sequence. This means that with conventional machine control systems, waiting times frequently occur due to sample preparation during which the chromatographs are not used, offering considerable potential for throughput optimisation. And it is precisely this potential which is utilised by CHRONOS. CHRONOS increases the active measuring time of the machines and therefore considerably raises the efficiency of the laboratory.

Parallel processes for sample preparation

The CHRONOS software organises parallel processes for sample preparation. This utilises the analysis system to a much greater extent, while observing the time margins of each individual sample preparation. To this is added further strengths of the software: a user-friendly interface minimises the number of parameters which need to be changed depending on context. The relevant values are recorded in tabular form and can be changed by the user, which means that a complete sample list can be generated conveniently in only a few steps. Fixed parameters can be changed as needed in the method editor. (Fig.1 Section of window for creating sample lists related to context following selection of method)

A graphic representation of the sample processing is created at the touch of a button, which means that overall duration and current progress can be followed in real time. Multi-stage sample preparation procedures can be parallelised by means of an integrated algorithm. Here also, it is possible to call up a graphic representation of the sequence of events. CHRONOS also combines the sample list for the autosampler control with the data system list, so that the user only has to administrate one list. This simplifies handling and avoids errors which could be caused by confusing different items.

All encompassing functionality:

  • import and export of sequences in ChemStation and Xcalibur or cvs-format
  • control of multiple PALs including PAL RTC
  • support of Dual PAL systems
  • support for liner exchange in a ATAS Linex system
  • programmability of Valco valves over a serial interface
  • customizable sample list for easy user interface adjustments
  • management of multiple sample lists
  • management of priority samples
  • call up external programs for data interpretation from within the method
    reading of gravimetric data from a Mettler balance
  • support for Gilson dilutors for sample dilutions
  • support for SPME fiber changer
  • support for ITEX functions
  • support of 2D bar code reader
  • ability to send SMS messages
  • control of peristaltic pumps for liquid handling
  • support for Masshunter for GCMS
  • support for IKA-Shaker
  • support of DLW-Injection (Dynamic-Load-and-Wash-Injection) from CTC
  • direct Integration in LIM-Systems from ICD
  • easy navigation trough bundling of tasks
  • new comfortable functions to create task lists 
  • free choice of units with helpful proposals
  • simple cut/copy/paste functions
  • automatic reports permit fast control

New graphical Interface in CHRONOS 4.3 simplifies work

  • Supports Clarity 5
  • Supports a second instrument for GL Sciences Evolution Workstation
  • Support for Omnic to control IR spectrometers from Thermo Scientific
  • Support for the BRUKER MS Workstation
  • Plugin provided tasks can now get access to the "Autosampler" property of other plugin tasks more easily
  • Plugin provided tasks can override the default demo mode execution behavior
  • Many errors in Acquisition. Extended Properties can now be discovered already at validation time

Updates are easy to implement, existing methods can be transferred in a simple and save way.

Examples of Applications:

GC and GC/MS

  • Headspace
  • SPME
  • ITEX-2
  • Derivatization
  • automatic H53-extraction
  • on-line SPE
  • Dual PAL applications


  • multi-dimensional chromatography
  • matrix separation using SPE
  • derivatizing with fluorescence tags
  • fast separation of active ingredient in pharma research


CHRONOS is supplied as standard with ready-made modules for the usual analysis procedures; this includes headspace, liquid injection, SPME and other standardised methods such as for example hydrocarbon determination according to DIN H53. If required, the user himself can generate modules in CHRONOS adapted to his own needs. PAL series autosamplers from the company CTC Analytics and OEM products of the same design are currently supported.

Xcalibur from Thermo Scientific, Chemstation from Agilent and Analyst are also integrated. Linking of further data systems like EZChrom is in process.

Axel Semrau® has developed this software in cooperation with the University of Bochum.

Please contact us for a web presentation or a demo version of this unique software solution.