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 Care and Use information


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Basic Valve Driver

This document describes the Basic Valve Driver BVD for use with various automated liquid handlers and manual benchtop laboratory use.

Automated Use:

The driver can be launched via a shell command in various liquid handler software packages. Once installed refer to the help screens in the executable. Examples of allowable arguments are included for use with the Biomek 2000 Bioworks software.

Valve Plumbing

The basic layout is as follows: The valve can be placed upstream of the bottle if your vacuum pump capacity is low. It should be noted that contamination of the valve is likely and the valve should be cleaned after use in the upstream configuration.

Electrical hook up

  1. Plug the AC Power cord for the black box into a grounded outlet.
  2. Connect the serial cable between the Black box and the PC serial port.
  3. Verify the RDY light is on in the Black Box.


When the automated software valve control option is used with the Dynamifold it functions as a fully automated system for maximum ‘Walk-away Time’. All that is required is to close all open applications and to run setup from the supplied disk.


Insert the vacuum driver disk and run setup.

Follow the prompts and install it to an application directory.

It may be helpful to copy the .EXE and .INI from the application directory to the C:\Bioworks directory to simplify the command line statement. (no path required)


  1. Once setup has installed the program successfully.
  2. Right Click the .EXE file from explorer and create a shortcut to your desktop.
  3. Click open the program. You will get a time-out error until the proper comm port is set.
  4. Click SETUP , Comm. Port
  5. Type or click the serial port number the black box is connected to.
  6. Click Close
  7. Click SETUP, Save as default. Exit then restart.
  8. It should open and you should be able to turn ON or Off the black box.

Command Arguments

You can test the command line arguments easily, by typing the command after the .EXE name in the shortcut Properties.

  1. Vacuum.exe On (this should active the Black Box switch).
  2. Vacuum.exe Off (this should deactivate the Black Box switch).
  3. Vacuum.exe 100 (this will turn the switch On for 100 seconds then off)

There is more help available from the Help screens in the program.


Run ETOH or water through the vacuum system to purge any waste contamination.


Can more than one switch be controlled? Yes By renaming the .exe and saving a new default file the program can talk through another serial port. Try it. Think about it …..Pump, Vent..on,off…

Can I apply full vacuum with a down stream valve. Yes full vacuum >15" will not collapse the bottle it is designed for this configuration. The only advantage is you will have the stored capacity of the bottle to get a harder initial pull from a weaker pump. Often a softer start is desired and having the valve upstream of the bottle uses the bottle to dampen the surge and the valve stays cleaner.



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