Focus on the Wolfson Atmospheric Chemistry Laboratories

Martin Perkins

3rd November 2015

Air Pollution, Ally Lewis, Lucy Carpenter, MultiFlex GC/Q-TOF, Selected Ion Flow Tube Mass Spectrometry, SIFT-MS, University of York, Wolfson Atmospheric Chemistry Laboratory,

It is nice to find occasions to celebrate the great work done by some of our customers and now is a very appropriate time to throw a spotlight on the staff and students of the Wolfson Atmospheric Chemistry Laboratories at the University of York.

You may have spotted some of the team from York on the television news recently, when the vehicle emissions issue hit the headlines.  They carry out work to measure and understand the chemistry behind environmental air quality and so had a lot to say on the topic that was worth hearing.

Element engineers were busy installing a SIFT-MS in the lab when the film crews arrived. I was on Holiday in Italy at the time and was surprised to see Prof Ally Lewis pop-up on my TV screen as I was having breakfast one morning.

It is difficult to understate the importance of the work that the team in York are involved in.

According to the World Health Organisation, air pollution kills 7,000,000 people every year, making air pollution the largest single cause of preventable deaths Worldwide.

The atmosphere shows no respect to national boundaries and the team at York are part of a worldwide network of institutions carrying out work to assemble a picture of how atmospheric chemistry works on a global scale.

From a technical standpoint, the team in York do interesting and unusual things with analytical instruments and make measurements in some extraordinary places.

Here is a great video that explains what they do. At the 4:53 mark you will see their MultiFlex GC/Q-TOF sitting on the bench on the right.

One evening last week, I had the privilege of attending a lecture at the Royal Society in London, given by Prof Lucy Carpenter, at which she was presented with the 2015 Rosalind Franklin Award. Congratulations are due from all of us here at Element.

Element has enjoyed a constructive relationship with the team in York for a long time and it is one that we value greatly for many different reasons.

You can find more information on the University of York website.