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Agilent opens ‘state-of-the-art’ spectroscopy facility in UK

10 Oct 2019

Center designed to be a major research and development hub for molecular spectroscopy.

Agilent Technologies, a provider of technologies for life sciences, diagnostics and chemical markets, has opened a new state-of-the-art facility for spectroscopy research and development at the Harwell Science and Innovation Campus in Oxfordshire, UK.

With a focus on molecular analysis, the new Agilent site will be a major research and development hub for laser spectroscopy. It will also incorporate Agilent's Raman spectroscopy business, formerly known as Cobalt Light Systems, which was acquired by Agilent in 2017.

Agilent says it is focusing on investment in two main areas: research and development to enable customers to perform better science, and harmonizing existing product lines to ensure an optimal customer experience. The site will also accommodate the company's Laser Spectroscopy Center of Excellence (LSCE), focusing on research and development in the field of vibrational spectroscopy.

Historic site

The Harwell Campus spans 290 hectares (710 acres) south of Oxford, UK, and is well-known as a hub for science and innovation. Harwell is home to over 200 organizations (public, private, and academic), 6,000 people, and £2 billion of large-scale national science infrastructure. It is also the place where Agilent's proprietary Raman technologies were originally developed by Prof. Pavel Matousek, and his colleagues at the Science and Technology Facilities Council's Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, and where Cobalt Light Systems was first established.

Prof. Pavel Matousek, a senior fellow at the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) Central Laser Facility, commented, "The new Agilent facility is perfectly located for collaboration between Agilent's spectroscopy businesses and the large number of scientists and engineers we have at Harwell. I very much look forward to our future joint endeavors."

"The growth in Agilent's molecular spectroscopy business created the need for a larger facility," said Phil Binns, vice president, and general manager of Agilent's Spectroscopy division. "Our new flagship site will enable us to develop a truly unified approach to vibrational spectroscopy. The location will also facilitate greater collaboration with internationally acclaimed academic and scientific thought leaders based at this premier UK hub of scientific innovation."

Agilent UK has more than 480 employees across the UK in manufacturing, sales, and service. Agilent's two manufacturing sites in Shropshire manufacture liquid chromatography columns, silica and polymeric particles, and magnetic beads for the clinical and diagnostic industry; as well as instruments for gel permeation chromatography. This investment in the UK strengthens Agilent's role as a leader in molecular spectroscopy.

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