Publisher’s Note: This paper, originally published on 14 February, 2018, was replaced with a corrected/revised version on 30 March, 2018. If you downloaded the original PDF but are unable to access the revision, please contact SPIE Digital Library Customer Service for assistance.
General discussion on the development of portable and miniaturized instrumentation for High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) is given, specifically the design of UV absorbance detector for field applications. UV/Vis absorption detectors are the most commonly used detector in HPLC for the identification of organic compounds, detection of peptides, proteins and nucleic acids. Opportunities for miniaturization arise from trends which focus on ease of use, portability, and application-specific instruments for example in environmental applications - detection of phenols (water pollutant) and contaminants. Further usage is such as detection of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and carcinogens in edible oils and growth promoter residues in meat. Significant improvement in size and complexity were realized using a simplified optical configuration, efficient low-power LED driver circuit and detector electronics. Firstly, the detector’s optical configuration is discussed as an essential part of the miniature fixed-wavelength design. UV-LED with different wavelengths can be installed interchangeably without the need for complicated assembly and precise alignment process. In the second part, each functional block of the detector hardware design are also discussed. The electronics consist of mainly sample photodiode and reference photodiode, Log-ratio amplifier and signal conditioning electronics built with precision analog design techniques and low-noise electronic components. Finally, baseline noise and drift measurements and chromatography performance are presented and the results are compared with conventional detector under identical conditions as benchmark. The advantages of miniaturized HPLC system are portability for onsite analysis, increased efficiency, lower solvent requirements and fully integrated separation and detection system.