Vert Strikes Commercial Success with University of Edinburgh Sale

Vert has concluded its first major sales contract, marking the technology pioneer’s entry into a new commercially-driven phase of its growth.

The Scottish firm’s A100 compressor – based on innovative technology that has been described as the biggest advance in the industry in 40 years – has been deployed at the University of Edinburgh to streamline their operation at the Edinburgh Clinical Research Facility Mass Spectrometry Core Laboratory. It has allowed the laboratory to take full advantage of new instrumentation that prepares biological samples for trace level clinical analysis.

Many of the instruments in the Mass Spectrometry Core require compressed gases such as nitrogen or air in order to operate. When a new sample preparation liquid handling robot was purchased and connected to the existing shared nitrogen supply, the flow of gas to the existing equipment was reduced and meant that constant operation was not possible, causing what Deputy Core Manager Scott Denham described as a “real headache” for the team.

As the facility has high demands on its instrumentation by a number of users, it requires that each piece of equipment is in continuous operation. The decision was made to source a dedicated supply of compressed air for the new sample preparation instrument. This would allow the instrument to operate independently and reliably. To date, air compressors situated within the shared laboratory were a nuisance and discouraged due to excessive noise levels.

Vert’s patented Conical Rotary Compressor (CRC) technology lies at the core of its compact and portable compressors that are capable of continuous operation that is quiet. The design is significantly quieter than other compressors in the market, which means researchers in the shared laboratory aren’t affected by high noise levels.

“The Vert A100 has solved a big problem for us,” Scott said. “It fits neatly under the lab bench and works away quietly, so has been a quick and easy solution to what could have been a major obstacle to our operations.”

Set up in 2013, Edinburgh-based Vert has to date focused on the technical development of its compressor technology, which has potential applications across a wide range of fields. The deal with the University of Edinburgh is the firm’s first commercial success, and follows the appointment of John McNeil as sales engineer in charge of driving new business.

Under new chief executive Phil Harris, Vert is focusing on three key compressor markets: fibre optic cable installation, laboratories and hand-held tools.

“This is a significant sale for Vert and demonstrates that the A100 is ideal for busy lab environments where a quiet, compact source of compressed air can make a real difference to people’s working environment,” Phil said.

Vert Rotors employs 14 people at its compressor design centre on the southern edge of Edinburgh. The company’s technology has won multiple awards since the first working prototype was produced in 2014, and led to Vert securing a prestigious government grant earlier this year from the UK Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

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