ZURICH/FAELLANDEN, Switzerland, – July 1, 2022 – Bruker Switzerland is honored to receive the status of Chemical Landmark by the Swiss Academy of Sciences. The Chemistry Platform of the Swiss Academy of Sciences (SCNAT) established the program “Chemical Landmarks” to identify and manifest the Swiss scientific and technological heritage by awarding sites which have played a significant role in the history of chemistry in Switzerland. The goal of the program is to recognize historical sites where distinguished chemists or important chemical breakthroughs were made and to emphasize and foster public interest in the chemical sciences.
The Bruker site in Faellanden together with the ETH Zurich are being designated Chemical Landmarks due to the various technological milestones in the field of analytical chemistry with NMR, but also because of the successful long-term collaboration between Bruker and ETH and the advancements that have transitioned from academia to industry.
Bruker entered the field of NMR spectrometer development in 1965 with the establishment of Spectrospin AG which enabled close cooperation with Bruker in Germany. Soon after, it introduced the first fully transistorized NMR instrument, the HFX 90. This allowed for new, previously difficult, experiments to become routine.
In the mid-1970s, the company began collaborating with Richard R. Ernst of ETH Zurich. Together, the ETH chemist and the industrial company, Bruker, brought the first Fourier transform (FT) spectrometer to market. Compared to conventional NMR spectrometers, this technique is characterized by better resolution and shorter measurement times and was a quantum leap in analytics. Prof. Ernst was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1991 for his research into high-resolution NMR methods.
A second ETH researcher, Kurth Wüthrich, joined the ETH team and achieved another quantum leap in analytical research. Thanks to 2D NMR spectroscopy, it was now possible to not only break down the chemical composition of substances, but also the distances between the individual atoms. This opened the door to analyzing the structure of complex molecules. Wüthrich also received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2002 for his work on the structural elucidation of proteins.
Bruker continuously collaborated with the biomolecular NMR research community to enable scientific innovations in chemistry and functional structural biology leading to a wide range of technological marvels including the most recent announcement of the compact 1.0 GHz-class NMR magnet platform, Ascend Evo.
Dr. Falko Busse, President of the Bruker BioSpin Group, commented, “We are truly honored to be recognized, together with our friends at ETH, as a Swiss Chemical Landmark by SCNAT association. Our Swiss site has prided itself on continued innovation in the world of analytical chemistry and in improving our infrastructure to become a more environmentally sustainable enterprise.”
Dr. Falko Busse, President of the Bruker BioSpin Group
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