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About FTA

Pump Control from Run and Trigger

Systems above the FTA100 series contain automatic pumps. Liquid dispense can be controlled automatically by movie capture. At the same time, you can manually control the pump directly.

To control the pump from the movie capture, do the following:

  • To have the pump start when you click Run to begin an experiment, check "Start on Run" on the Pump tab. You can also manually start the pump at any time.

    When started by Run, the pump rate and maximum volume to dispense are set by the "Auto Control" values on the Pump tab. The volume dispensed may be less than the maximum volume set if the pump is stopped by a trigger.

    When started manually, the pump rate is set by the slider or "Manual Control" rate. The pump will continue manually pumping for a long time unless it is stopped by the user or a trigger.

  • To have the pump stop when the movie trigger occurs, check "Stop on Trigger" on the Pump tab. Otherwise, the pump will continue to run when the trigger occurs. Stop on Trigger works irrespective of how it was started, auto or manual. This is a convenient way to stop the pump after a drop detaches from the tip: use the video trigger mode to detect the detachment and select Stop on Trigger.

  • If you have both Start on Run and Stop on Trigger selected, but you push "Run + Trigger" or the trigger occurs immediately, the pump will never start.

You also have the option of running a Pump Program. The Pump Program is a sequence of volumes and times for the pump to execute. You may fill in zero volume but non-zero time for a simple wait with no pumping. Finally, a waveform generator will calculate the best approximation for common waveforms, given the cycle rate and to volume swing selected by the user.

When you want to use the pump program rather than the constant rate Auto mode discussed above, you must check Run Pump Program on Start. Almost always you will want to uncheck Stop on Trigger because you will want the pump program to continue running past the time of the Trigger. If you simply want to tryout your Pump Program without taking a Movie, check Run Pump Program Now and it will do so.