A cutting edge hub to produce world class medical and science lab instruments has begun developing its first commercial products.
The centre opened in South Australia in late November and is already assuming global responsibility for commercially producing the hemaPEN – a device for dried blood spot sampling.
What we want to do out of Adelaide is create the next generation of analytical equipment
The collaboration between the University of Adelaide and Trajan Scientific and Medical (Trajan) is supported by the South Australian government.
Trajan has a long history in precision glass manufacturing while the University of Adelaide’s Institute for Photonics and Advanced Sensing is a world leader in specialised glass manufacture.
Instruments, Sensors and Devices Business Unit General Manager Anne Collins said the hemaPEN would have potential applications for diabetes and DNA testing but would be one of many specialised items brought to commercial reality at the hub.
She said the business unit would focus on taking hi-tech products from their infancy and turning them into something “you can pick up and use”.
“Just about any lab you go into in the world will have analytical equipment that contains Trajan’s products,” Dr Collins said.
“What we want to do out of Adelaide is create the next generation of analytical equipment.
“Some of the objectives we’ve got are to take technologies, make them more applicable and get them into more places and make them smaller and more affordable.”
Dr Collins said many of the instruments would leverage the core technology and glass expertise from the University’s Institute for Photonics and Advanced Sensing.
“What’s great about being physically located here is that we’re interfacing on a daily basis with the researchers in IPAS. My door’s been open for less than three weeks and the number of people coming in with ideas is just phenomenal and that’s the advantage of being specifically located within the university.”
Trajan CEO Stephen Tomisich said the hub was an important milestone in the company’s journey as it expanded from its historical manufacturing hub in Melbourne, Victoria.
“The combination of the location in Adelaide, the collaboration with IPAS and the university, and the expansion of technical capabilities puts us in a strong position to realize our vision of enriching wellbeing,” he said.
He added that the Australian government’s recently released Innovation Statement that will help fund research and development will help more businesses collaborate with universities.
“We believe the renewed focus on science and innovation and the long term sustainable benefits to the economy are well directed,” Tomisich said. “This is a first big step in the right direction.”
The strategic partnership grew from the Photonics Catalyst Program – a joint initiative between the South Australian government and IPAS to build connections between industry and emerging laser and sensing technologies.
Key to the partnership is the presence of the Optofab Node of the Australian National Fabrication Facility at the University and Health Industries South Australia.
University of Adelaide Adelaide’s Institute for Photonics and Advanced Sensing includes 205 researchers, about 20 of whom will be directly involved with Trajan.
IPAS manager Piers Lincoln said having the highest level of industry collaboration in the same building as an advanced manufacturer such as Trajan was invaluable.
“We work with a lot of companies in other areas such as the wine industry and mining services and they might need a tiny part like a widget made so rather than searching overseas Trajan fills that gap perfectly,” he said.
“We are so excited about having Trajan here and what it represents.”
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