Quartz Crystal Microbalances (QCM)

Life Science


Label-Free Observation of Molecular Interactions, Surface Layer Systems and Fluid Properties from 3T Analytik

PT. Medquest Jaya Global offers extremely high quality quartz crystal microbalances manufactured by 3T Analytik for bioanalytical studies.

Basic Information:

Quartz Crystal Microbalances (QCM) are highly sensitive instruments for measuring the mass and material properties of deposited molecular layers as well as of wetting liquids on their quartz sensor surfaces. The measuring principle of this technique is based on the precise oscillation of the quartz sensors at their resonant frequency when an alternating voltage is applied.

Depositions at the surface or wetting of the surface result in a frequency shift and, depending on the material properties, also in a damping of the oscillation. Both, the frequency shifts and the damping (dissipation) of the oscillation are captured with the 3T Analytik qCell/qCell T QCM instruments with high resolution and in real-time.

These novel instruments provide real-time insights into molecular interactions, biofilms, liquid properties and even the analysis of blood.

The qCell is a lower cost basic entry-level version, while the qCell T uses a high precision and powerful Peltier driven temperature (T) control system for cooling and heating and a thermostated flow cell with a gold coated, disposable quartz crystal sensor mounted on a carrier sheet.

Image: qCell – the lower cost basic entry-level version without temperature and pump control.


The qCell T as well as the qCell flow cell design is unsurpassed in its simplicity and features for QCM measurements:

  • The sensor sheet is placed easily on predesigned anchor points onto the open trench base.
  • A fluidic head locks over the carrier sheet to seal the device and establish fluidic connections.
  • A peristaltic pump supplies liquid at user programmable flow rates.
  • The integrated qGraph and qGraphViewer software for instrument control, data acquisition, graphic display and processing completes the system.

 qCell T – uses a high precision and powerful Peltier driven temperature (T) control system for cooling and heating. Sample liquid is thermostated and supplied fully automated by adapted peristaltic pump.

The qCell T software suite provides for fully automated instrument control, signal acquisition, real time display, processing and data storage. Individual panels display frequency, damping (dissipation), temperature and pump flow profiles.

There are many applications possible with the qCell/qCell T instruments, including:

  • Kinetic studies (dissociation/binding constants)
  • Protein interaction (affinity assays)
  • Viscosity measurements in microlitre volumes
  • Cell adhesion/desorption
  • Drug development
  • Receptor-ligand interactions
  • Molecular aggregation
  • In-situ formation of polymer films
  • Enzymatic degradation studies
  • Biofilm studies
  • Studies of structural changes, proliferation and cell spreading
  • Detection of coagulation status
  • Real time studies of antigen-antibody interactions (e.g. immunoassay, specific coupling of cells and bacteria, blood typing)
  • Investigation of the malaria cycle (e.g. release and reinvasion of parasites)

Sensor Chips

 Each quartz sensor comes mounted on a thin polymer sensor sheet of precise dimensions. The sensor chip is labelled with a unique serial number and features an asymmetric shape with grooves which precisely fits into a flat cavity at the bottom of the open-architecture flow cell. Different quartz coatings (e.g. Ti, Ag, Cu, Pt, polymers, proteins) are available upon request.

Application Notes available include:

  1. Performing a measurement on the qCell T
  2. Monitoring Ligand-induced Cellular Response
  3. Characterization of SOM Affecting NP Bioavailability
  4. Blood Coagulation “Quick Time “Measurement

For further information including application notes, please contact us

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