Microsaic Systems Shrinks Mass Spectrometry Using MEMS

Microsaic 4000 MiD

Microsaic Systems announced the launch of the advanced 4000 MiD™ Mass Spectrometer at the recently concluded Pittcon 2014 Conference in Chicago.  By integrating key MS technologies into MEMS chip technology, it is possibly the smallest and the most advanced MS device until now. This breakthrough allows use of MS in any laboratory setting, thanks to its small size, low cost, ease of use, integration and maintenance.

Traditionally bulky, costly and complex MS technology meant that this technology was kept out of reach of most laboratories. By contrast, the 4000 MiD™ can be placed in a bench or fume hood, allowing for automated sampling, dilution and injection for direct MS analysis. It is cheaper than conventional MS as it has fewer components, and is easy to be maintained. The device has been successfully tested for on-line reaction and batch monitoring, as well as HPLC-MS. It can also be teamed with the new MiDas™ interface unit and software for real-time automated sampling, dilution and injection.

The continued miniaturization of MS could open up is uses in new markets such as quality control, fuel contamination or food safety. A very serious competitor to 4000 MiD™ is being developed at the 908 headquarters. Their biggest asset is a molecular trap a thousand times smaller than that of conventional mass spectrometers, which will allow them to design handheld mass spectrometers and take them out of the laboratory and into the fields where they are really required.

Others manufacturers such as 1st Detect, Waters and Thermo Scientific have all entered the small/medium sized MS market (see table below for the main specifications) and the competition is predictably going to grow in this segment.


MMS-1000 (1st Detect) Waters ZQ 2000 LCMS 4000 MiD™ TSQ Quantum™ Access MAX Triple Stage
Mass Range 35–450 Da Up to 2000 Da m/z 50-800 m/z 10-3000
Resolution Less than 0.5 Da FWHM n/a m/z 0.7±0.1 FWHMn/a n/a
Sensitivity 1 ppb n/a S/N ratio of 10:1 (RMS) S/N ratio of 3000:1
Size 7 ½” x 12½” x 9” (19 cm x 32 cm x 20 cm) 15.3″ x 23.1″ x 32″ (38.8cm x 58.6cm x 81.28cm) 21.65” x 13.77” x 9.84” (55cm x 35cm x 25cm) 24” x 22” x 31.1” (61cm x 56cm x 79cm)
Weight < 17 lbs (8 kg) n/a 70.5 lbs (32 kg) 260 lbs (118kg)
Interface Ethernet n/a Ethernet, 5 x USB n/a
Embedded PC Yes Yes Yes No
Inlet flow rate up to 600 mL/min n/a Up to 2.0mL min-1 n/a


Labcritics Alerts / Sign-up to get alerts on discounts, new products, apps, protocols and breakthroughs in tools that help researchers succeed.