Apparatus for automatically taking and analyzing samples of substances made available in random manner, is of the type comprising an analysis assembly including at least two analysis stations having different characteristics, and a module delimiting temporary storage slots for receptacles containing different substances to be analyzed by different methods applicable to each of said substances, said apparatus comprising: receptacles each bearing a code identifying the substance contained therein, the analysis treatment to which is is to be subjected, and a treatment priority attributed thereto; means for detecting the in-use or available status of each analysis station; means for scanning the slots in the storage module for reading the codes of the receptacles and for storing them in priority order in conjuction with the characteristics of the corresponding treatment and the addresses of the slots; means for seeking in priority order correspondence between the treatments to be performed and a currently available compatible analysis station; means for displacing an insertion system into relationship with the available analysis station; means for bringing the selected sample receptacle into relationship with an extraction station; means for extracting at least a portion of the sample from the selected receptacle and for transferring it into the insertion system; means for inserting the sample into the analysis station; means for controlling the operating conditions of the analysis station as a function of the analysis treatment to be performed; and means for returning the insertion system to its home position in readiness for a new operating cycle.
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