Hi Johan and John,
You are correct with your assumptions, the turbo controller (A) is trying to spin the pump, however because the bearing is probably stuck / crashed the load is too much for the controller circuit. The controller then errors.
Replacement of the pump is the most probable fix for this instrument.
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From: PLASMACHEM-L: Analytical Chem.(ICP's, DCP's, MIP's). [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Johan Schijf
Sent: 24 January 2010 23:08
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: 4500 Turbo Pump Revisited
the way I interpret this is that the backing (rotary) pump seems to do its job and is fine. Clearly you are getting an overload on turbo pump A and this causes the error message. The high load on turbo pump B is probably because it is trying to make up for the failure of turbo pump A. The fail-safe seems to be functioning properly (system is detecting an error and shutting down); I think this means that the controller is OK but the turbo pump is defective (causing the overload). Any comment or confirmation from Agilent technicians would be most welcome.
"[...] more than half the banana genome is shared with humans (a fact more
evident among some of my acquaintances than others)" - Sir Robert May
Dr. Johan Schijf
Assistant Professor, Aquatic Environmental Geochemistry
UMCES/Chesapeake Biological Laboratory
P.O. Box 38, 1 Williams Street
Solomons, MD 20688-0038
Tel. (410) 326-7387 (office) 7392 (lab)
Fax (410) 326-7341
e-mail: [log in to unmask] John Allen <[log in to unmask]>:
> With the methers on, the instrument starts pumping down backing vacum
> field goes green (~50 Pa) at which point the turbo pumps engage. The load
> on turbo pump A comes on at about 1.4 amps and then climbs to the point
> where it goes off scale above 3 amps and then settles at around 2 amps for
> a few seconds and then the error message appears and everything shuts off.
> The turbo load (I) settles at ~1.4 amps and the Analyzer Vacum doesn't
> show any visible change.
> If this gets to you before you go, have a very nice weekend and the same
> to all of you.
> John Allen
> Analytical Chemist I
> Philadelphia Water Department
> Bureau of Laboratory Services
> 1500 E. Hunting Park Ave.
> Philadelphia, PA 19124-4941
> "Johan Schijf" <[log in to unmask]>
> 01/22/2010 04:43 PM
> "PLASMACHEM-L: Analytical Chem.(ICP's, DCP's, MIP's)."
> <[log in to unmask]>, John Allen <[log in to unmask]>
> [log in to unmask]
> Re: 4500 Turbo Pump Revisited
> Hi John,
> just to let you know, the digging around has already taken place (not as
> much work as it would seem) and the turbo pump and controller are sitting
> ready to be shipped as soon as you find out what you need.
> I can contribute this insight to your observations:
> The 'spinning down' sound that you hear after the click is normal. What is
> not normal is that you get an error message next. I am not sure what the
> sound is (maybe one of the Agilent engineers can comment on that) but if
> it is actually the turbo spinning, that would indicate to me that the
> problem might be with the controller. Another option is that there is a
> bad sensor somewhere (vacuum or turbo load?). One thing you should do is
> have a couple of meters up on the screen during the startup process. From
> the meter menu, select the ones for analyzer and backing vacuum and the
> load meters for the two turbos (you can only have four meters up at the
> time, so you will have to close all others). Does the backing vacuum field
> turn green before the turbos are engaged? Do the load meters show a load
> after the click and during the spinning down noise (normally this is about
> 0.3 - 1.0 Amps with occasional spikes accompanied by an increase in
> Standing by to hear what you learn. Have a good weekend, Johan.
> "[...] more than half the banana genome is shared with humans (a fact more
> evident among some of my acquaintances than others)" - Sir Robert May
> Dr. Johan Schijf
> Assistant Professor, Aquatic Environmental Geochemistry
> UMCES/Chesapeake Biological Laboratory
> P.O. Box 38, 1 Williams Street
> Solomons, MD 20688-0038
> Tel. (410) 326-7387 (office) 7392 (lab)
> Fax (410) 326-7341
> e-mail: [log in to unmask] John Allen <[log in to unmask]>:
>> I asked for help a few weeks ago about a turbo pump A malfunction error
>> an old HP 4500 ICP-MS.
>> Johan Scijf has graciously offered to donate to the cause but I wanted
>> try and make sure that it was in fact the turbo pump before I had him
>> around on the inside of his. We were having a slight oil leak in one of
>> the rotary pumps so I wanted to get that fixed to make sure that it
>> actually the problem. After repairing the rotary pump, the problem still
>> So this is what basically happens when you try to pump the instrument
>> down. The Vacum (BK) starts to pump down and then there is a click and
>> hear the spin of the turbo pump which immediately sounds as if it is
>> slowing down and when it sounds as if it has come to a stop the error
>> message comes up on the screen. I am guessing that since the turbo pump
>> turns on that the controller is not the problem and it is really the
>> but this is not very scientifically based theory so if anyone out there
>> has any more technical ways to test this, I am all ears.
>> As always, many thanks for all of your help.
>> John Allen
>> Analytical Chemist I
>> Philadelphia Water Department
>> Bureau of Laboratory Services
>> 1500 E. Hunting Park Ave.
>> Philadelphia, PA 19124-4941