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Ion Science

History of Ion Science

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History of Ion Science

1989: The company was founded. Mr Mark Stockdale and Mr Mel Vinton as the active founders and developed the first product range ‘Saga’ flow meters. These were manufactured using first principle of operation “i.e. bubbles” with a light sensor.

1990: The first ‘GasCheck B3 and B4’ leak testing instrument was launched. Very sensitive to helium and many other gases for testing manufactured parts and vacuum systems for the smallest leak.

1991: The ‘GasCheck B4IS’ was granted BASEEFA, CENELEC approval, and the world’s first Intrinsically Safe genuine leak detector for hydrogen with the same features as the B4. ISL gained the quality status of ISO9002, as manufacturer. The system division was selected as the main supplier for all radiators leak test machines for Ford (UK) Motor Company.

1993: Ion Science Messtecknik (ISM) was formed in Dusseldorf with Clemens Verley the MD. The company was set up to re-sell Ion Science Ltd’s products and develop leak-testing systems for the automotive market in Germany.

1995: Dr Frank Dean joined as Research Manager. Frank an Electrochemist and specialist in Gas sensor technology. His task was to develop and innovate gas-sensing technology; the company could further develop into the future.

1996: A Patent for a Hydrogen permeation system and also the first introduction to Photo-Ionising Detector (PID) technology. These PID’s with development from Mark Stockdale were successfully integrated in the Systems Division for some special leak testing applications.

1999: Duncan Johns joined the company as Managing Director taking over from Mel Vinton. With a wealth of International sales and general management experience from the gas detection industry, Duncan joined to strengthen the management team and improve the international sales of the company in standard products.

ISM launches a new instrument the ‘Gas Check P1 SF6’. Ion Science took responsibility for the international marketing of the product. ISL also launched a new instrument platform; with the first product a replacement to the ‘GasCheck B and B4IS series’ called GasCheck 3000 and GasCheck 5000 with both an IS equivalent product still in service today.

2000: Two new products launched, the ‘PhoCheck 5000EX’, the company’s first PID instrument which detects volatile organic compounds down to ppb levels and the ‘Hydrosteel’, the world’s first truly portable hydrogen permeation in steel analyser, to be sold to Oil and Gas industry to measure corrosion.

2001: The PhoCheck range extended with two new models the 2000 and 3000EX. In addition, a new calibration device called the CalCheck launched for easy calibration of leak detectors.

The Ion+ Division developed a new high temperature collector and won the company a SMART award to explore the potential of a development for detecting corrosion under insulation.

2002: Dr Frank Dean joins the Board of Directors, after six valuable years of service as a Research Manager. Together with Mark Stockdale and Duncan Johns they purchase the controlling interest in the company.

Ion Science Americas was formed with Mr Geoff Hewitt as CEO, a former VP of Sales and Marketing for HNU this was the very first PID Company founded in the early 70’s.

A worldwide patent on PID Fence Electrode was applied for – giving low-level stability in VOC/RH Atmospheres. .

2003: Launched PhoCheck 1000 a simple VOC detector, for entry into the PID market. Won another smart award for the development of a permanent Hydrosteel monitoring system after success of the portable device.

PhoCheck 2000, 3000 and 5000 re-launched in the graphical format.

ISO 9001:2000 certification is achieved.

2004: FirstCheck 6000 is launched for the first response market in the US. It’s the first PID instrument to combine complete multi-gas detection from ppb levels up to 10,000 ppm combined with traditional multi-gas sensors for oxygen (O2), hydrogen sulphide (H2S), carbon monoxide (CO) and explosive gas (LEL) detection.

In addition, Hydrosteel 7000 is launched; this product is a fixed, totally non-intrusive device for the continuous monitoring of hydrogen flux corrosion at high criticality sites within petrochemical, gas production and petrochemical refining operations.

2005: ISM launch an SF6 LeakCheck P1:p with high sensitivity and a response of less than 1 second to even the smallest of leaks (1x10-7).

PhoCheck+ range is launched with new significant improved features and the FirstCheck 4000 is added to the range.

TVOC is launched as a fix continuous VOC detector using ION science’s 7 series PID senor developed with BW technology.

2006: Awarded patent for our Fence Electrode technology featured in PhoCheck, FirstCheck and TVOC.

2007: The launch of our first 4 series PID sensor known as MiniPID available to the OEM gas detection market.

2008: IECEx (ATEX) certification received on MiniPID miniature photoionisation detection technology. 

Complete negotiations for purchase of Shawcity Ltd, our exclusive UK Distributor.

2009: Ion Science launch Continuous Ground Gas Monitor the world’s first in-situ mobile ground gas monitor for detecting CH4, CO2, O2, H2S, CO and VOCs to global markets. 

2010: The TVOC Fixed, Continuous PID monitor is certified with ATEX approvals to enable a 3 wire system to be used in Zone 2 hazardous areas, without safety barriers.

The Hydrosteel Transportable & Transportable Light corrosion monitors are developed for continuous monitoring of Hydrogen flux.

Ion Science launches a portable and a fixed MVI & AMI mercury vapour detector to international markets, after purchasing the original manufacturer.

Ion Science receive independent verification for best performing PID technology from the state of Maine Department of Environmental Protection (ME DEP), who go on to purchase a number of PhoCheck PID detectors. 

Findings of an evaluation prove Ion Science PID technology outperforms its competition.

The revolutionary PhoCheck Tiger VOC detector is launched at Distributor Conference, Cambridge, UK. 

The TVOC System Plus, Environmentally contained PID Monitor is introduced to global markets. 

2011: Ion Science launches the revolutionary Tiger Select for the detection of benzene and total aromatic compounds (TACs)

2012: Ion Science launches the Cub personal VOC monitor, the world's smallest, lightest, most sensitive PID detector on the market. 

2014: Ion Science is 25 years old and celebrates the milestone by taking employees on a river boat cruise on the river Thames!

The launch of the Titan, a fixed benzene specific monitor takes place and is set to revolutionise the petrochemical industry.