This is the 8th in our ‘Did you know’ series of articles introducing things you may not know about the Whitley range of products and services – read on and you may find out something about your workstation that could make your working life easier.
Single plate entry systems (aka Letterboxes) are a useful option available on all Whitley Workstations, but why would you need one?
What is a single plate entry system used for?
A single plate entry system is a useful option that allows individual Petri dishes, multi-well plates, culture flasks, etc to be introduced into the chamber quickly and without compromising the workstation’s internal atmospheric conditions. Using a single plate entry system can save gas in that you don’t need to use the airlock for single samples. It also means that single samples can be introduced to the workstation atmosphere quickly, limiting any stress to cells or damage to bacteria that prolonged exposure to normal atmospheric conditions may cause.
Which Whitley Workstations can have a single plate entry system?
All of them. From the smallest in the range – the DG250 – to the larger ones such as the A95 or A55 Workstations. There are options for the Hypoxystation range too.
How many options are there?
There are six types of letterbox, in 2 sizes: 9cm and 15cm. As a size guide, the 9cm options accommodate a 90mm Petri dish (or objects of a similar size such as culture flasks and multi-well plates). To find out which options would be suitable for your workstation, have a look at the chart on our Single Plate Entry System brochure.
Where on a workstation is a letterbox fitted?
9cm versions are fitted to the front of a workstation, between two gloveports. The larger, 15cm version is fitted to the left hand panel of the unit.
As an example, if you have a Whitley A85 Workstation, there are three options available:
- A03125: 9cm, front loading. Can be retrofitted.
- A03225: 9cm, front loading – longer tray to allow the transfer of larger items. Can be retrofitted.
- A03325: 9cm, front loading – has a folding tray so does not obstruct the working area. Can be retrofitted.
Which other Whitley Workstations accommodate the long tray and folding tray letterboxes?
DG250, A95 and H85 models.
Is it just the A02711 that has to be specified at the time of order?
Yes, however it is always better to discuss single plate entry system options prior to ordering – just in case. For example, the A07208 should be considered before placing an order for an A35, A45, A55, H35 or H45 as it can only be retrofitted on units with a removable front.
Can I use a single plate entry system all the time, instead of using the airlock?
Single plate entry systems are designed for occasional use only and not as a direct alternative to airlocks or porthole systems that allow sample transfer. They are ideal for on-call or emergency use, for example.
What if I need to ask a question about single entry plate systems?
In the UK, simply email our sales team on email@example.com and someone will give you a call.
If you are not based in the UK, please contact our authorised distributor in your country – a distributor look-up facility is provided on our website.