Analytical Instrumentation ULTRAMIC® Advanced Ceramic Heater

Applicationultramic ceramic heater

Mass spectrometers are used to determine the presence of trace chemicals in industrial, environmental and clinical applications. The technique involves using high heat to desolvate the ionized sample prior to its entry into the spectrometer. Traditional heating methods include use of cartridge or cable heaters to heat a metal assembly that, in turn, conducts the heat to a stream of high-purity inert gas.

Design Requirements

Mass spectrometers have detection capabilities into the part-per-trillion levels for most analytes and as such, a non-contaminating thermal source is imperative. Also, instrument designs are being challenged with the competing requirements of reducing size and complexity,while still improving sensitivity.


Watlow's ULTRAMIC® advanced ceramic heater has been specified for use with ion sources because its chemical compatibility, low porosity and fine surface finish reduce the likelihood of contamination. Plus, being capable of 400°C (752°F), it meets the performance requirements of most mass spectrometers. Additionally, with the possibility of direct sample contact, the high wattage to size ratio provides the opportunity for the complexity and size of the ion source to be reduced.