LabPod Controlled Atmosphere System

The LabPod is for testing the response of fruit or vegetables to controlled atmospheres down to less than 0.1% oxygen, and for measuring their respiration and respiratory quotient. It is ideal for post-harvest laboratories working with controlled atmospheres and respiration rates within a controlled temperature environment.

How It Works

The LabPod is a hermetically sealed enclosure with a stainless steel base and a clear molded cover that sits in a water trough for perfect sealing. It has a capacity for about 70 kg of produce in 4 RPC boxes.

Each pod is self-contained with built in oxygen, carbon dioxide and temperature sensors with digital communications to a central operating panel. Built in control valves and gauges regulate the connected nitrogen, air and optional CO2 supply to very accurately maintain the selected controlled atmosphere.

Respiration and RQ are periodically and automatically measured using the built in high sensitivity analyzers. The atmosphere control is paused and the changes in oxygen and CO2 caused by the product respiration is measured and used to calculate and display the respiration rate.

An internal low power circulation fan periodically stirs the atmosphere and is activated by the system controller.

The central operating panel supports from 1 to 32 LabPods and all the settings are made from this panel through its touch screen or remotely from a network or internet-enabled PC or smartphone. The measured data is regularly collected and can be displayed on a program that runs on the PC and can be exported to Excel or other common programs.

The controller can be dedicated to the LabPods or it can be an addition to an existing SCS6000 CA control system running a conventional system using a single analyzer and pumped sampling systems.


  •  Patented Technology:
  • U.S. Patent No. 8739694,
  • Canadian Patent No. CA2746152
  •  Self-contained control of controlled atmosphere environments
  •  Totally leak-tight
  •  Measures RQ & respiration
  •  70kg fruit capacity
  •  High resolution gas analyzers built in
  •  Automatic operation
  •  Full data recording


Measurement & Control Range:

 Oxygen: 0-25% or 0-2.5% Auto range Resolution: low range +/- 0.002% O2 Electrochemical 4-year long life sensor

Carbon Dioxide: Two options at purchase, 0-5% or 0-20% CO2 Resolution: < 5% 0.002% >5% 0.02%

Control Inputs:

 Control Gases required:

  • Nitrogen with an oxygen content lower than minimum required CA oxygen.
  • Fresh Filtered Air. CO2 if required. Gas supply inlet pressure 1 to 3 Bar (15 to 50 psi )

 Automatic atmosphere control with included solenoids

 Control Setpoints for Oxygen and CO2 adjustable to a 0.01% resolution. Gas control differentials 0.05%, CO2 add differential 0.2%.

 Air added when oxygen is measured low:

  • Air flow adjustable 0.5 to 5 L/min

 Nitrogen added when Oxygen is measured high or when CO2 is high.

  • Adjustable flow 1 to 10 L/min

 CO2 (if connected) added when CO2 is low. Adjustable flow 0.1 to 1. L/min.

 Additional flow rate adjustable from controller from 100% to 1% of maximum flow over a 5 minute period.

 Optional CO2 scrubber available for CO2 control if Nitrogen flush CO2 removal is not acceptable.

Respiration & RQ Measurement:

 Automatic frequency of measurement, adjustable from 10 to 999 hours

Operation Of Internal Fan:

 ON when control gases being added.

 With no gas addition, adjustable over range 1 to 999 seconds every 1000 seconds.

Temperature Measurement:

 Probe with a typical accuracy of 0.1°C available for measuring and recording the fruit temperature

Analyzer Calibration:

 Zero stability typically better than 0.05% over 12 months

 Automatic barometric pressure compensation for span calibration

 Remote calibration possible from operating panel

 Sampling port available for atmosphere sampling with a portable standard analyzer and for Ethylene and volatile measurement

Water Level Detector:

 A warning is indicated on operator’s screen when water in trough is low and requires topping up

Pressure Relief:

 The flow of correction gases into the LabPod are automatically discharged to atmosphere through vents normally sealed by the water seal

Electrical Connection:

 One multicore cable for CAN data connection and 24v operational power

 Connector & wall mounted termination box provided with each LabPod

Central Operation Panel:

 5.7-inch touch screen display. Capacity for up to 32 LabPod connections. 24v power supply for the system included in panel.

 Additional power supply needed for greater than 16 LabPods. The controller has a standard Ethernet connection with a dedicated IP address. Remote client and PC software provided for PC operation.

 Continuous readout of gas and temperature and operational status. Access to all control settings. Remote analyzer calibration protected with a passcode. Settings for empty volume and product weight for respiration rate calculations

Data Collection:

 O2, CO2 and temperature recorded every hour together with most recent RQ and respiration results

 Results stored on CF card in PLC and on hard disk of connected PC

 Can be displayed on PC in Graphical and tabular formats and exported in various formats including Excel, Word and PDF


 Oxygen at typically 1% in a static LabPod (no produce, no correcting gas) will remain within 0.1% O2 over a period of 24 hours


 135 x 84 x 70 cm high Weight 46 Kg.

 Empty volume 379L Pull down time to 2% Oxygen with N2 at 5 L/min is 4 Hours.

 Capacity: 4 x RPC crates (Typical Single RPC size: 40 x 60 x 20 cm, 17 Kg capacity)