For the third time in two years, the ACQUITY Ultra Performance LC (UPLC) system received an award for its innovation. The R&D 100 Award singles out the top 100 most technologically significant innovations known to industry, government and academia.
"Judges look for significant technological improvements—not incremental—and the 'wow' factor that makes a product unusual, more interesting or clearly superior to what is currently available," said Tim Studt, editor-in-chief of R&D magazine, sponsors of the award.
Judges are recruited from a pool of professional consultants, university faculty and industrial researchers. They recognized the ACQUITY UPLC system for achieving new levels in performance and efficiency.
"Winning this award validates Waters Corp.’s leadership position as an innovator in analytical instrumentation, software, chemistry and support in terms of changing the way scientists work. This single achievement took more than 72 inventors and principal developers along with a support team encompassing all areas from R&D to manufacturing," said Art Caputo, president of Waters Division.
The system speeds the analysis of compounds in thousands of routine samples or detects compounds often missed in complex samples using conventional high performance liquid chromatography methods. It is already helping scientists fill the pipeline early with promising drug candidates and increasing R&D productivity at pharmaceutical and industrial organizations worldwide.
The ACQUITY UPLC System is also used to confirm toxin levels (e.g. perchlorate, a known thyroid inhibitor) in drinking water, contaminants and banned substances (e.g. Sudan dyes, veterinary drugs and pesticide residues) in the food supply as well as to confirm levels of routine compounds such as caffeine in soft drinks.
Based on sub two-micron patented particle technology, the system takes full advantage of the separation speed and efficiency the column packing provide. Adapting traditional systems to accommodate these columns at high speed was not an option. So the Waters development team broke new ground and designed a holistic system including instrumentation, software, chemistry and support—without compromising either speed or efficiency.
This is the third honor of note given to the ACQUITY UPLC system, which also received the 2004 Pittcon Editors' Gold Award for Best New Product. ACQUITY UPLC technology was also the major reason cited by leading industry analyst firm Frost & Sullivan when it presented Waters with its 2005 Leading Analytical Instrumentation Company of the Year Award. Waters has also been the recipient of the R&D 100 Award before—most recently in 2000 for its XTerra reversed-phase HPLC columns and in 1999 for its Oasis HLB 96-well Extraction Plate.
R&D Magazine will profile the winners and their products in its
September issue. The award ceremony will take place on October 20th at Chicago's Navy Pier in Illinois.