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New partnership to ‘accelerate’ evaluation of chemical reactions

Posted on 28 September 2012

The Department of Chemistry has agreed a new partnership with a Swiss-based technology company to modernise the way chemical reactions are screened and evaluated.

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Under the new partnership, between the Department of Chemistry at York and Chemspeed Technologies, the company will invest £750,000 to provide two robotic platforms to be housed in the Department’s extended Dorothy Hodgkin research building.

The fully automated platforms for parallel synthesis, designed and built by Chemspeed, will enable academic groups to increase the number of experiments to find faster and more effective solutions to demanding challenges in synthetic chemistry and catalysis.

Professor Ian Fairlamb, of the Department of Chemistry, said: “Accelerating the speed and increasing the number of experiments is a critical factor in research and development. The higher output, especially testing a greater number of experimental variables, can leverage the success rate in finding new, greener and cleaner synthetic methods which are important drivers in research, not only for academics but also in industry."

Accelerating the speed and increasing the number of experiments is a critical factor in research and development.

Professor Ian Fairlamb

Dr Jake Grace, a Workflow Architect at Chemspeed, will be based predominantly at York, contributing his technical expertise to the research programmes.

Dr Grace said: “I’ll be interacting closely with the research groups in the Department to identify mutually beneficial collaborative opportunities with the potential to both increase productivity and diversify the portfolio of research projects being carried out at York.”