Agilent Technologies has acquired Cobalt Light Systems, a competitor in the 2017 ‘ASTORS’ Homeland Security Awards Program, and a provider of highly differentiated Raman spectroscopic instruments for the pharmaceutical industry, applied markets, and public safety.
Public safety applications include Hazmat incident management and response, explosive ordnance disposal (EOD), illicit lab search, first responders, law enforcement, military search, and screening at ports and borders.
Cobalt’s innovative suite of bench top and handheld, portable Raman spectroscopic instruments are based on proprietary technologies that enable through-barrier identification of chemicals and materials.
(Providing a revolutionary new capability in handheld detection, Cobalt’s Resolve™ enables rapid detection and identification of explosives, narcotics and hazardous materials through sealed, opaque containers. Courtesy of Cobalt Light Systems and Vimeo)
Traditional solutions based on conventional spectroscopy have limited capacities for detection of materials through sealed, non-transparent containers and are constrained to near-surface identification of materials such as pharma tablet coatings and containers.
By enabling measurement through opaque barriers and surfaces, Cobalt’s solutions can analyze whole tablets or inside sealed containers reducing the need for quarantines and time-consuming sample processing and testing in pharmaceutical QC, hazardous chemical ID, and security.
The result is significant time, cost, and resource savings for customers as well as increased safety for certain market segments such as first responders or air passengers.
Cobalt recently entered the hazardous substances market with its handheld platform.
Resolve Handheld Through-Barrier Hazmat, Explosives and Narcotics ID
Cobalt’s Resolve™ is a ground-breaking new handheld chemical identification system that identifies hazardous materials – through sealed opaque containers, for applications in Hazmat incident management and response, explosive ordnance disposal (EOD), illicit lab search, first responders, law enforcement, military search, and screening at ports and borders.
For the first time a handheld Raman system can identify unknown chemicals, explosives and contraband materials concealed by opaque containers and packaging, such as colored plastics, dark glass, paper, card, sacks and fabrics.
Existing handheld Raman systems work well with direct line-of-sight to the sample, but no other system can identify materials through opaque, colored packaging.
Resolve’s unique capability is powered by Cobalt’s proprietary spatially offset Raman spectroscopy (SORS) technology.
The system quickly identifies substances from comprehensive on-board spectral libraries including explosives, precursors, toxic industrial chemicals, chemical agents, narcotics, household chemicals and less commonly used chemicals.
Some of the applications include:
- Screening Envelopes and Parcels for Illicit Materials
- Explosive Detection Through Opaque Containers
- Hazardous Material ID Through Opaque Containers
The ability to analyze unknown materials through containers means hazards stay contained.
With Resolve there is no requirement to open a container to take a sample, and this significantly improves safety and efficiency in most hazardous response operations.
Cobalt’s customers include more than 20 of the largest 25 global pharmaceutical companies, and more than 75 airports across Europe and Asia-Pacific, including eight of the 10 largest European airports, with over 500 devices deployed at airport checkpoints.
“Raman spectroscopy is one of the fastest-growing segments in spectroscopy,” said Phil Binns, vice president and general manager of Agilent’s Spectroscopy and Vacuum Solutions Division.
“This acquisition gives our customers access to state-of-the-art Raman spectroscopy technology.”
“It also provides Agilent immediate entry into this fast-growing segment with a highly competitive, differentiated offering.”
“This is exactly the type of acquisition that Agilent’s strategy calls for – one that expands our market share and provides immediate benefits to our customers,” said Patrick Kaltenbach, president of Agilent’s Life Sciences and Applied Markets Group.
“We’re focused on delivering best-in-class solutions to our customers, and Cobalt’s Raman spectroscopy product and team meet and exceed that criterion.”
“Cobalt and Agilent have similar cultures focused on customer-centric innovation,” Cobalt CEO Paul Loeffen said.
“The combination of Cobalt’s patented technologies with Agilent’s product-development expertise, manufacturing capabilities, channels and customer base will allow us to scale our operations to take advantage of this rapidly growing market.”
Agilent is acquiring Cobalt for £40 million in cash.
Cobalt is privately held with 52 employees, most of whom are expected to join Agilent.
Paul Loeffen, Cobalt’s CEO will remain with Agilent as the Director of Raman Spectroscopy.
Oxford will become Agilent’s global center for Raman spectroscopy.
Cobalt Light System’s Resolve in 2017 ‘ASTORS’ Homeland Security Awards Program
The 2017 ‘ASTORS’ Homeland Security Awards Program, is organized to recognize the most distinguished vendors of Physical, IT, Port Security, Law Enforcement, First Responders, (Fire, EMT, Military, Support Services Vets, SBA, Medical Tech) as well as the Federal, State, County and Municipal Government Agencies – to acknowledge their outstanding efforts to ‘Keep our Nation Secure, One City at a Time.’
As an ‘ASTORS’ competitor, Resolve will be competing against the industries leading providers of CBRNE Detection Systems.
Good luck to Resolve on becoming a Winner of the 2017 American Security Today’s Homeland Security Awards Program!
To learn more, go to Resolve Handheld Through-Barrier Hazmat, Explosives & Narcotics ID Detector.