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1. US20110118626 - Sampling devices and methods

Note: Texte fondé sur des processus automatiques de reconnaissance optique de caractères. Seule la version PDF a une valeur juridique

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Claims

1. An automated sample aspirating method comprising:
providing one or more collection tubes, each collection tube being oriented along a vertical axis and having a sample carrier located therein;
applying a magnetic force to move at least a top end of each sample carrier to a location off a vertical center axis of the respective collection tube;
inserting an aspirator, generally along the vertical axis, into the one or more collection tubes to a vertical position adjacent at least a portion of the respective sample carrier; and
aspirating a fluid from the one or more collection tubes through the aspirator; and
wherein each sample carrier comprises a handle and a tapered tip, and each collection tube comprises a tapered lower end configured to hold each respective sample carrier with its handle generally along the vertical center axis until the magnetic force is applied.
2. The automated sample processing method of claim 1, wherein each sample carrier comprises a handle and a tip, the tip being provided on the handle by a metal wire.
3. The automated sample processing method of claim 2, wherein applying a magnetic force to move at least a top end of each sample carrier to a location off a vertical center axis of the respective collection tube comprises applying a magnetic force to the metal wire of each sample carrier.
4. The automated sample processing method of claim 1, wherein each collection tube comprises a cap, and the step of inserting the aspirator comprises piercing the cap with the aspirator.
5. The automated sample processing method of claim 1, wherein each collection tube comprises a cap, the cap being dimensioned to permit an adjacent portion of the sample carrier to move laterally across the sample tube.
6. The automated sample processing method of claim 1, wherein providing one or more collection tubes comprises providing a plurality of collection tubes in a rack.
7. The automated sample processing method of claim 6, wherein providing the plurality of collection tubes in the rack comprises providing each collection tube in a respective container location on the rack.
8. The automated sample processing method of claim 6, wherein applying a magnetic force to move at least a top end of each sample carrier to a location off a vertical center axis of the respective collection tube comprises providing one or more magnets in the rack.
9. The automated sample processing method of claim 8, wherein providing one or more magnets in the rack comprises providing a magnet between an adjacent pair of collection tubes.
10. The automated sample processing method of claim 8, wherein providing one or more magnets in the rack comprises providing a single magnet for each two collection tubes.
11. The automated sample processing method of claim 10, wherein at least one magnet comprises a first face adjacent a first collection tube, and a second face adjacent a second collection tube.
12. The automated sample processing method of claim 11, wherein the at least one magnet comprises a triangular magnet.
13. The automated sample processing method of claim 8, wherein:
providing the plurality of collection tubes in the rack comprises providing the plurality of collection tubes in a row extending along a linear centerline; and
providing one or more magnets in the rack comprises providing one or more magnets only on one side of the centerline.
14. An automated sample aspirating method comprising:
providing one or more collection tubes, each collection tube being oriented along a vertical axis and having a sample carrier located therein, each sample carrier comprising a handle and a tip provided on the handle by a metal wire;
applying a magnetic force to move at least a top end of each sample carrier to a location off a vertical center axis of the respective collection tube;
inserting an aspirator, generally along the vertical axis, into the one or more collection tubes to a vertical position adjacent at least a portion of the respective sample carrier; and
aspirating a fluid from the one or more collection tubes through the aspirator; and
wherein each sample carrier tip comprises a tapered tip, and each collection tube comprises a tapered lower end configured to receive each respective sample carrier's tapered tip to hold each respective sample carrier with its handle generally along the vertical center axis until the magnetic force is applied.
15. The automated sample processing method of claim 14, wherein applying a magnetic force to move at least a top end of each sample carrier to a location off a vertical center axis of the respective collection tube comprises applying a magnetic force to the metal wire of each sample carrier.
16. The automated sample processing method of claim 14, wherein each collection tube comprises a cap, and the step of inserting the aspirator comprises piercing the cap with the aspirator.
17. The automated sample processing method of claim 14, wherein providing one or more collection tubes comprises providing a plurality of collection tubes in a rack.
18. The automated sample processing method of claim 17, wherein applying a magnetic force to move at least a top end of each sample carrier to a location off a vertical center axis of the respective collection tube comprises providing one or more magnets in the rack.
19. The automated sample processing method of claim 18, wherein providing one or more magnets in the rack comprises providing a magnet between an adjacent pair of collection tubes.
20. The automated sample processing method of claim 19, wherein at least one magnet comprises a first face adjacent a first collection tube, and a second face adjacent a second collection tube.
21. The automated sample processing method of claim 20, wherein the at least one magnet comprises a triangular magnet.
22. An automated sample aspirating method comprising:
providing one or more collection tubes, each collection tube having a cap and each collection tube being oriented along a vertical axis and having a sample carrier located therein;
applying a magnetic force to move at least a top end of each sample carrier to a location off a vertical center axis of the respective collection tube;
piercing the cap with an aspirator and inserting the aspirator, generally along the vertical axis, into the one or more collection tubes to a vertical position adjacent at least a portion of the respective sample carrier; and
aspirating a fluid from the one or more collection tubes through the aspirators and
wherein each sample carrier comprises a handle and a tapered tip, and each collection tube comprises a tapered lower end configured to hold each respective sample carrier with its handle generally along the vertical center axis until the magnetic force is applied.
23. The automated sample processing method of claim 22, wherein each sample carrier comprises a handle and a tip, the tip being provided on the handle by a metal wire, and wherein applying a magnetic force to move at least a top end of each sample carrier to a location off a vertical center axis of the respective collection tube comprises applying a magnetic force to the metal wire of each sample carrier.
24. The automated sample processing method of claim 22, wherein providing one or more collection tubes comprises providing a plurality of collection tubes in a rack.
25. The automated sample processing method of claim 24, wherein applying a magnetic force to move at least a top end of each sample carrier to a location off a vertical center axis of the respective collection tube comprises providing one or more magnets in the rack.
26. The automated sample processing method of claim 25, wherein providing one or more magnets in the rack comprises providing a magnet between an adjacent pair of collection tubes.
27. The automated sample processing method of claim 26, wherein at least one magnet comprises a first face adjacent a first collection tube, and a second face adjacent a second collection tube.
28. The automated sample processing method of claim 27, wherein the at least one magnet comprises a triangular magnet.