ABER Biomass Monitors

Futura Overview

Read our new technical poster:

Automated Cell Counting for Mammalian Cell Culture




ABER's Futura Biomass Monitors are the complete instrument for measuring LIVE cell concentration online - designed with all the biomass monitoring processing power in a single, compact housing.

Download the ABER product catalog to see the full complment of biomass monitoring solutions.

Announcement: ABER announces end-of-life for 1st generation yeast monitor products


Real-time Monitoring of Viable Biomass in your Reactor

The Futura is  a new generation of compact, lightweight biomass monitoring instrumentation  that can be used on conventional and disposable bioreactors.

The ABER Futura is the complete instrument; it has all the biomass monitoring processing power contained within a compact housing. Each connected probe has unique calibration data stored in a micro-processor within the probe body allowing the Futura to automatically detect and identify the connected probe. Information on the probe life cycle can be provided by an intelligent sensor management software system.

Like all ABER products, the Futura can be provided with full IOQ documentation making it the ideal choice for cGMP cell culture. Changes to the Futura configuration are tracked in it's integral 2 gigabyte memory so a full audit trail is always available.

The Futura will be offered in three configurations to meet your needs. In each case, no additional transmitter or complex multiplexer is required and the customer can use their own PC or fermenter control system(including via OPC) to configure the simple options for measuring different cell types. There is no restriction on the number of instruments that can be controlled from a PC or control system. The Standard Futura can be provided with a low cost PLC based colour touch screen if a local display is required.

Form Factors

One product, two solutions:


The Standard Futura
For connection to bioreactors 1L and greater

This is an entry-level system at the lowest possible cost. The lightweight housing will be suitable for most bioreactors and is ideal for 25mm diameter, side-mounted probes.


The Standard Remote Futura
For connection to small bioreactors or where there is restricted space on the headplate

This system incorporates a slim, lightweight pre-amplifier -- making it ideal for small bioreacors with working volumes as low as 100mL. The main Futura housing can be mounted away from the bioreactor vessel.


Real time means real savings

Capacitance cartoonCells with intact plasma membranes in a fermenter can be considered to act as ny capacitors under the influence of an electric field. The non-conducng nature of the plasma membrane allows a build up of charge. The resulng capacitance can be measured: it is dependent upon the cell type and is directly proporonal to the membrane bound volume of these viable cells.

A unique range of probes

Choose from a range of in situ steam sterilisable probes manufactured in robust materials that conform to FDA requirements & USP Class VI.  The smooth, annular ring electrode arrangement provides a surface free of areas of entrapment and arge EVEN electric field; ideal for many cell culture applicaons where cells will collect in any well or crevice. For producon applicaons ABER offers a robust 25mm probe with flush electrodes- a design that is used in over 100 GMP bioreactors. Option are available for a range of probes for single use bioreactors including single use, sterilisable and flow-through cells.


ABER led the development of radio frequency biomass measurement techniques for over 20 years. Over 1,000 ABER systems are now installed around the globe, all providing on-line measurement of viable biomass and helping to reduce risk and maximize producvity in a bioreactor. Many of the systems are now used in cGMP cell-culture processes with some customers using over 50 instruments as a key part of their manufacturing facility. We are now pioneering a new generaon of instruments that are small in size, light in weight, strong in power, and flexible in implementation.


Solutions that meet your facility's unique needs...

The ABER Biomass Monitor can be used in several different configurations with a variety of bioreactors. Below is an example of integrating up to 8 Futura Biomass Monitors to communicate with fermenter controllers or SCADA systems.

FUTURA networking


Networkable using small-footprint Futura Connect Hubs

Futura Connect HubMulple Futura systems can be easily incorporated into most PC’s, bioreactor controllers and SCADA systems via unique 1-, 4- and 8-channel FUTURA CONNECT hubs. USB-to-PC, 4-20mA, and Modbus options allow a mixture of various types of bioreactors to be monitored or controlled, and options are available for ¼ DIN transmitters with a color touch screen (Touch-V350).

Tracable (ideal for cGMP)

Changes are tracked with the integral 2-gigabyte memory, thereby providing a full audit trail. Full IOQ documentaon is also available making it suitable for cGMP applicaons, and the Futura is OPC compliant.

Futura SCADA Software

The Futura SCADA SOFTWARE is a GAMP5, modular package that provides continuous monitoring of mulple Futuras. Physiological changes of cultured cells can be monitored as the soware analyzes the biomass spectra over a wide range of frequencies. Addional parameters are calculated including bio-volume, cell size and a factor that relates to the cell size distribuon. The SCADA soware uses a separate communications interface so the instrument can provide "for information only" data to a local PC.


On 07 February 2013, Applikon and ABER co-hosted a webinar presented by Assistant Professor Seongkyu Yoon, U. Mass Lowell. His presentation, "Improved Estimation of Viable Cell Density Using Dielectric Spectroscopy," describes how to best use dielectric spectroscopy for online measurement of VCD in mamallian cell culture.



Futura transmitterLearn more about the ABER Futura Biomass Monitor

Send a message to your local Applikon representative requesting information about ABER Biomass Monitors.

Product Literature


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