I cannot fill the probe, what now?

I tried to fill a FluidFM probe but it seems not possible. What should I do now?

If a fresh probe cannot be filled despite using the protocol given here it can have several reasons. Please follow the following steps to localize the problem:

  1. Fill the reservoir of the probe with distilled, filtered, degassed water
  2. Apply 1 bar of pressure for 30 seconds
  3. Release the pressure

Now observe the water meniscus between the liquid reservoir and the FluidFM chip. This is best visible for the Nanosurf and JPK probe adapter. We can have 4 cases:

Case 1: The water meniscus never moved towards the FluidFM chip.

There is a leak between the pressure controller and the probe. Typically the leak is at the connector or the pneumatic tubing. You can then immerse the parts in question into a water-filled beaker and apply a high pressure with a syringe. Any leaks will reveal themselves through bubbles.

Case 2: The meniscus moved towards the chip when pressure was applied, yet is back in the reservoir after releasing the pressure.

The probe opening or the channel is blocked. Document the serial number and take a picture of the issue, write us an email and we will analyze the probe to find the source of the problem. 

Case 3: The meniscus moved a bit towards the FluidFM chip, yet has not reached it yet.

The probe is open, but the pressure and time were not sufficient to fill the channel yet. Either wait for a few minutes with 1 bar applied or use a syringe as a pressure source to achieve a higher pressure.  

Case 4: The meniscus reached the FluidFM chip.

This means the probe could be successfully filled. Continue with your experiment

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