When you are preparing to return to normal operation, there are a few key things to keep in mind to help you make a smooth transition. First, clean off any coverings you may have placed on the instrument during inactivity. The instrument has vents in multiple locations and all need to be open and accessible during scanning to avoid overheating in your instrument during operation.
Next, ensure power is restored to the instrument and the PC if it was disconnected during the idle time. Also ensure the power switch on your SkyScan is set to the “On” position prior to beginning the activation process. Verify that all of the cables leaving your SkyScan instrument are still properly connected to the acquisition computer.
Launch the control software for your instrument from the acquisition computer. During the initialization process, several self-checks will be completed by the instrument. At the conclusion of these self-checks, your control software should appear as normal. Depending on the amount of time your instrument has been idle, your X-ray source warmup time may be extended from the typical 15 minutes the first time you activate the X-ray source. No action is needed on your part, as the X-ray source will automatically know the proper amount of warmup time required for safe operation, but you should be aware that the warmup time could range from 15 minutes to up to two hours, depending on how many weeks have passed since the last use of the system.
Before scanning your first sample, it’s a good idea to run an instrument alignment to ensure your system is still in optimal operating condition.
Here are a few reminders to give your scanner a little bit of TLC after shutdown for an extended period:
- Dust the system exterior and interior sample chamber
- Warm up the X-ray tube – typically 15 to 40 minutes
- Monthly pin alignment
- Inform Micro Photonics if the system motors are noisy or the door is not functioning properly
As a sealed, self-contained instrument there are few things your instrument will need during an extended shutdown. With a few preparation steps, you too can have your system set up for a smooth reinitialization after a pause in operation.
Please reach out to us with any questions on this process or with other application support questions.
We hope this tip will help you with your instrument and encourage you to contact us at 610-366-7103 if you have any questions. Please email email@example.com if any assistance is needed.