Aston University installs world’s first cyclic IMS mass spectrometer

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  • Published: Nov 6, 2019
  • Source: Aston University
  • Channels: Base Peak
thumbnail image: Aston University installs world’s first cyclic IMS mass spectrometer



Aston University in the UK and Waters Corporation have announced the completed installation of the world’s first Waters SELECT SERIES Cyclic IMS mass spectrometry system within the university’s School of Health and Life Sciences. The new instrument will support research into the biology of human diseases, the discovery of new therapeutics and advances in biotechnology, and will be used by researchers at Aston University and across the Midland Innovation consortium.

“We are delighted to have this new technology in our lab here at Aston; it will provide us and other researchers in the Midlands with a step change in how we conduct our research,” said Andrew Pitt, professor of pharmaceutical chemistry & chemical biology at Aston University. “The new instrument is one of a relatively recent class of mass spectrometers, called ion mobility spectrometers, which are able to separate molecules based not only on their mass but also by their shape. This allows us to see what is going on in biology in much more detail, including information we are able to gain from the shape of molecules that will allow us to solve much more complex questions.”

The first-of-its-kind SELECT SERIES Cyclic IMS integrates cyclic ion mobility (cIM) technology into a high-performance, research-grade time-of-flight mass spectrometer with unparalelled experimental potential. Combining novel IMS capability with significantly improved mass spectrometry performance and enabling software, this platform allows leading researchers to unlock the potential in scientific discovery.

 “Human biology is extraordinarily complex and the SELECT SERIES Cylic IMS system gives research scientists the ability to probe deeper into the mysteries of biology and human disease like never before,” said Jim Langridge, innovation, science and technology lead at Waters Corporation. “By collaborating with researchers like Professor Pitt, we wish to continually advance the science of mass spectrometry and enable and hasten their research into improving human health and well-being.”

Aston University scientists will run a visiting researcher program that will allow researchers from many disciplines to visit the university to learn about the instrument and test its potential.

Ion mobility mass spectrometry is a proven technique that separates molecular ions by their mass, charge and shape. The SELECT SERIES Cyclic IMS takes ion mobility separations to a new level by replacing the traditional linear ion mobility region with a novel compact cyclic ion guide. Ions traverse around the ion guide and the instrument achieves greater ion mobility resolution with every pass.

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