Rascal – Case Study

The Rascal is a Raman-based spectroscopic gas analyzer that enables an anesthesiologist to monitor physiologic anesthetic gasses in real time. It offers instant readings of a patient’s critical inspired and expired gases and works with existing ventilators. The Rascal is a valuable tool for anesthesiologists, who can make important observations about a patient’s reaction to anesthesia and respond accordingly.

  • Developed the mechanical design for two successful generations of anesthetic gas monitors in a start-up company that led to its sale for $24 million 
  • Designed chassis and skin packages, meeting all pre-production and production schedule deadlines 
  • Created an optical/laser resonator system to identify gas concentrations based on the Raman spectroscopy technology. This innovation facilitated the size reduction by 2/3 and standard cost by 30%. 
  • Engineered a system of alignment mechanisms providing five degrees of freedom. This allowed precision alignment to optimize optical power in a HeNe based laser system. The ability to utilize a HeNe laser in this application reduced the system’s standard cost by 40%. 
  • Managed design improvement project to eliminate alignment shift. The result of the project was improved robustness, decreased part count and a significant cost savings per year. 
  • Created an injection molded front panel to interface with a medical disposable and heating element. This connection links the analyzer to the patient’s air line and removes all water vapor from the sample, thus eliminating vapor contamination on optical surfaces.



Patents & Awards


  • US patent 5,452,084, Method and apparatus for zero-calibration of a Raman spectroscopy system. 
  • US patent 5,596,404, Raman gas analysis system with flexible web and differential thread for precision optical alignment 
  • US patent 5,818,579, Raman gas analysis system with cavity/boss assembly for precision optical alignment 
  • US patent 5,912,734, Raman gas analysis system with ball and socket assembly for precision optical alignment 
  • R&D Magazine, 1993 R&D 100 Award for the Rascal II respiratory gas monitor. 

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