Airgas unveiled three new products designed to maximize efficiency and purity in gas chromatography at the Pittsburgh Conference on Analytical Chemistry and Applied Spectroscopy (PITTCON) in Philadelphia.

Two of the products - Airgas Gas Flow Calculator and Airgas SmartTag - have recently garnered the Golden Gas Award™ from Gases & Instrumentation International magazine. The Airgas Ultra High Purity Regulator will also be added to Airgas’ diverse range of gas equipment solutions and was on display at PITTCON.

Speaking before the event, Bill Russo, Vice President - Airgas Specialty Gases, said, “Our customers are always striving to streamline their gas usage and find efficiencies where possible, and that’s particularly true during the current helium shortage.”

“Our newest system components and software which will be on display at PITTCON support laboratory gas users in their efforts to get the most out of their gas purchases.”

The award-winning Airgas Gas Flow Calculator helps laboratories evaluate total gas usage for all gas chromatography applications and achieve gas reduction goals. It can be used to calculate actual gas usage at each instrument attached to the gas stream to determine amounts of waste from gas leaks or gas being used for non-analytical applications. The Airgas Gas Flow Calculator can also help determine if switching from helium to hydrogen as a carrier gas will be a cost-effective solution.

“We’ve found that there is often miscommunication between chemists and gas supply representatives because they speak in different gas measurements - chemists reference linear gas rates and columns, where as gas representatives speak in cubic feet and cylinders,” says Frank Kandl, Product Manager - Airgas Specialty Gas Equipment. “With the help of the Airgas Gas Flow Calculator, both parties are on the same page and the accurate amount of gas needed may be provided more effectively.”

Also unveiled was the Airgas SmartTag, the industry’s first visual alert system for managing gas expiration, as well as on-site verification of gas contents, Certificate of Analysis, point-in-time validation of devices connected to the cylinder, cylinder fill history, location where the cylinder was filled, and more. The unique microprocessor collar fitted to each cylinder provides instant data retrieved by handheld and wall readers so that information may be printed or blue-toothed to a customer’s own data base. Unlike common Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) devices that contain minimal data, the award-winning Airgas SmartTag collars store up to 21 fields of data for optimal cylinder gas storage, inventory, and reorder processes.

“The capabilities of the data provided by the collars are limited only by how a customer would like to use it. It could be as simple as a quick visual indication that the cylinder is ‘in date’ or an extensive report for all cylinders on site,” explained Kandl.

The latest specialty gas regulator offering from Airgas is the Ultra High Purity Stainless Steel Regulator, designed to drastically reduce the gas path and prevent contaminants from entering the gas stream during cylinder change-outs. The new regulators are designed with a check valve cylinder connection, packless diaphragm valve built into the regulator body, and 1/8” stainless steel compression fitting to maintain gas purity. As the only regulator with a diaphragm valve built into the body, the Airgas Ultra High Purity Stainless Steel Regulator has less internal volume which produces better sensitivity and responsiveness.

“This regulator series has unique features that make it an excellent choice for high-tolerance gas mixtures and use in high purity applications,” said Kandl.