Public Release: 

ORNL, SCIEX sign license agreement for analytical chemistry tech

DOE/Oak Ridge National Laboratory


IMAGE: An open port sampling probe developed by ORNL's Vilmos Kertesz (left) and Gary Van Berkel is among several mass spectrometry technologies licensed to SCIEX. view more

Credit: ORNL

OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Jan. 13, 2016 -- The Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory and SCIEX of Framingham, Mass., have signed a licensing agreement for technologies that speed up, simplify and expand the use of analytic chemistry equipment.

SCIEX is a leading manufacturer of mass spectrometers used to identify and characterize chemical compounds in a variety of industrial and academic fields. The ORNL-developed technologies, including an open port sampling probe, make it easier for non-experts to take advantage of the precision offered by mass spectrometry.

These advances will help SCIEX expand mass spectrometry adoption to applications outside the laboratory, such as on-site security and forensics; process control; materials science, food and water safety; and noninvasive, point-of-care disease diagnosis.

"Mass spectrometry is ideal for applications that require routine, rapid, highly simplified analyses, if the equipment could be simplified and made more rugged," said Tom Covey, SCIEX principal research scientist. "What has remained elusive to make this transition a reality, is the development of simplified, reliable, and universal techniques for transferring these types of samples from the world outside the laboratory into the mass spectrometer."

Covey continued; "It is our opinion that the open port probe technologies developed at ORNL are the missing link to solve this difficult problem. It is our intention to work closely with ORNL to advance this technology to its fullest potential."

These current ORNL technical advances build on more than 25 years of research in sampling and ionization systems for mass spectrometry funded by DOE's Office of Science. A team of researchers led by ORNL's Gary Van Berkel and Vilmos Kertesz has collaborated with SCIEX scientific staff under a cooperative research and development agreement since 1997.

"Our goal is to advance analytical characterization techniques to make measurements that are necessary and important to the larger scientific mission," Van Berkel said. "The advances we make can be spun right into commercial products."

ORNL and UT-Battelle work closely with licensees to ensure successful commercialization of licensed technologies. More information concerning licensing of ORNL technologies can be obtained at

ORNL is managed by UT-Battelle for the Department of Energy's Office of Science, the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States. DOE's Office of Science is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit

About SCIEX:

SCIEX helps to improve the world we live in by enabling scientists and laboratory analysts to find answers to the complex analytical challenges they face. The company's global leadership and world-class service and support in the capillary electrophoresis and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry industry have made it a trusted partner to thousands of the scientists and lab analysts worldwide who are focused on basic research, drug discovery and development, food and environmental testing, forensics and clinical research.

With over 40 years of proven innovation, SCIEX excels by listening to and understanding the ever-evolving needs of its customers to develop reliable, sensitive and intuitive solutions that continue to redefine what is achievable in routine and complex analysis. For more information, please visit



Caption: An open port sampling probe developed by ORNL's Vilmos Kertesz (left) and Gary Van Berkel is among several mass spectrometry technologies licensed to SCIEX.

NOTE TO EDITORS: You may read other press releases from Oak Ridge National Laboratory or learn more about the lab at Additional information about ORNL is available at the sites below:

Twitter -

RSS Feeds -

Flickr -

YouTube -

LinkedIn -

Facebook -

Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.