New optical dissolved carbon dioxide (DCO₂) sensor

Hamilton Process Analytics announces the launch of a new optical dissolved carbon dioxide (DCO₂) sensor for use in R&D, pilot, and production bioreactor applications.

With a goal of giving bioproduction scientists and engineers greater control to measure, monitor, and automate fermentation processes, Hamilton Process Analytics announced today the launch of a new optical dissolved carbon dioxide (DCO₂) sensor for use in R&D, pilot, and production bioreactor applications. 

Dubbed “CO₂NTROL” (simply pronounced “CON-TROL”), the DCO₂ probe leverages a solid-state, optical measurement principle and requires no maintenance outside of simple calibration. Unlike other DCO₂ measurement technologies such as off-line blood-gas analyzers and maintenance-heavy electrochemical (Severinghaus) electrodes, CO₂NTROL sensors offer the ideal combination of real-time, in-situ data that is accurate, precise, and not labor-intensive.

“We are especially excited to give scientists a way to reliably measure an important critical process parameter,” said Giovanni Campolongo, Hamilton’s biopharmaceutical market segment manager. “With reliable DCO₂ data, new insights can be derived that lead to faster scale-up and better quality and efficiency across cell culture processes.

With a measurement range of 5 - 1,000 mbar (0.5 to 100 %-Vol or 7.5 - 1,500 mg/L), CO₂NTROL also comes with standard Hamilton Arc technology, boasting an integrated micro-transmitter that stores calibration and quality data and makes calibration possible in a controlled metrology lab. The robust sensor is also ready for CIP, SIP, and autoclave.


To support the launch of its new product, Hamilton offers two detailed white papers on dissolved carbon dioxide’s important role in bioprocessing:

  • “Should Dissolved CO₂ Be a Critical Process Parameter?” explores why the FDA’s Process Analytical Technology framework categorizes DCO₂ as a CPP. For instance, by influencing other culture parameters such as extracellular and intracellular pH or key performance indicators such as viable cell density, DCO₂ has a direct impact on product titer and its critical quality attributes.
  • “Are Current Dissolved CO₂ Measurement Technologies Good Enough?” reviews existing strategies and equipment currently used to measure DCO₂, including indirect measurement (soft sensors), reference and blood-gas analyzers (BGAs), off-gas analyzers, and electrochemical (Severinghaus) sensors.


Hamilton Process Analytics’ portfolio now includes six key critical process parameter measurements for the bioreactor: pH (and oxidation-reduction potential, or redox), dissolved oxygen, conductivity, viable cell density, total cell density, and now dissolved carbon dioxide. 

“For more than 30 years, Hamilton Process Analytics’ mission has been to work closely with customers to pioneer measurement technologies that make a significant impact on industries ranging from biopharma to brewing,” said Clara Caminada, vice president of Hamilton Process Analytics.

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