Robert W. Allington to receive Pittcon Heritage Award


Noted entrepreneur, prolific innovator, recipient of many business honors

PHILADELPHIA -- 13 October 2004 --The Chemical Heritage Foundation (CHF) today announced that Robert W. Allington will receive the fourth annual Pittcon Heritage Award. Founder of Isco (originally Instrumentation Specialties Company), he holds more than 200 U.S. and foreign patents and has developed many important instrumentation technologies for separation and biological research.

Jointly sponsored by CHF and the Pittsburgh Conference on Analytical Chemistry and Applied Spectroscopy (Pittcon), this award recognizes outstanding individuals whose entrepreneurial careers have shaped the instrumentation community, inspired achievement, promoted public understanding of the modern instrumentation sciences, and highlighted the role of analytical chemistry in world economies. The award will be presented at Pittcon 2005 in Orlando, Florida, in March.

"Bob Allington is among the most prolific innovators in the field of instrumentation and an inspiring entrepreneur," said Arnold Thackray, president of CHF. "He started Isco in his garage and grew it into a $60-million-plus global enterprise."

The first major innovation at Isco came when Allington received an order to manufacture a fraction collector for liquid chromatography, which served a market niche for biochemical laboratory instruments.

Allington's work on separation science was followed by his development of UV absorbance detectors (as opposed to UV transmittance detectors) for separation by liquid chromatography, centrifuged density gradients, or electrophoresis. These detectors were also unique in the first use of electronic peak-slope detection to control fraction collectors or data systems, which calculate peak area and retention time. Allington also developed the first portable spectroradiometer and the first electronically programmable multipump gradient former for liquid chromatography. In later years Isco also became a leading supplier in the wastewater-monitoring market. By 2004 Allington held more than 100 U.S. patents and more than 160 foreign patents. Isco merged with Teledyne Technologies in 2004 to form Teledyne Isco.

Allington will receive the Pittcon Heritage Award at the 55th annual Pittsburgh Conference. Pittcon is the largest and most inclusive conference and exposition on laboratory science and instrumentation in the world. The annual event brings together more than 30,000 conferees and exhibitors from more than 70 countries. Pittcon 2005 will include approximately 3,000 presentations in addition to short courses, invited symposia, workshops, and new-product forums featuring instrument manufacturers from the life sciences, analytical chemistry, and other scientific fields. Proceeds from the conference are used to advance science education. More information is available at

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