From caffeine to viruses
Mass spectrometry is a powerful analytical technique that can measure the size, amount and shape of molecules we encounter every day from caffeine to viruses.
Manchester (UK) has a long history of association with mass spectrometry from discovery of underpinning concepts to the manufacture of the first commercially available instrument in Europe.
Manchester is home
Now part of the northern powerhouse, Manchester is home to many international companies specialising in mass spectrometry
Mass spectrometers developed and manufactured in Manchester are in action worldwide and this interactive website will showcase global research highlights from early disease detection to the molecular composition of a comet!
Dalton and Manchester
Manchester has long had a reputation for fostering breakthrough science in the area of Mass Spectrometry. Dalton postulated the first atomic theory of relative weights of elementary particles in Manchester (1805).
J.J. Thompson who was born in Manchester and attended Owens College (1870), the forerunner to The University of Manchester went on to build (with F.W. Aston) the first mass spectrograph in the Cavendish Laboratory Cambridge (1913).
The establishment of commercial mass spectrometry businesses in Manchester began in the 1940s, building on the expertise held at Metropolitan Vickers Electrical Company (MV) in vacuum pumps, pressure measurement, and copper windings.
The government commissioned the first three commercial mass spectrometers from the MV Research Department in 1944. The aim was to separate Uranium isotopes (needed for atomic bomb developments) but also potentially to ‘study hydrocarbons’.
Mass Spectrometry in Manchester
This pioneering early academic and commercial work in mass spectrometry in Manchester continued to develop over the next 70 years.
Mass Spectrometers designed, developed and engineered in Manchester are in use throughout the world.
Celebrate the widespread use of mass spectrometry across the globe
Create new scientific research partnerships
Show the myriad of users of mass spectrometers
Demonstrate the range of research that is enabled by mass spectrometry
Inspire the use of mass spectrometry and consideration of future applications
Visit our interactive map to discover the global research and impact of mass spectrometers designed and built in Manchester (UK) in action around the world.