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Special delivery at York Science Park

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The York Science Park facilities team was on hand to make sure a delivery with a difference went smoothly for one of its residents.

The Science Park’s Bio Centre took delivery of 67 specialist wall panels, weighing in at four tonnes, which will be used to create a state of the art magnetically shielded room housing what is believed to be the world’s most sensitive functional brain imaging device.

The panel dimensions meant that their delivery to York Instruments, located on the first floor of the Bio Centre, could only be achieved by removing part of the building’s façade.

To carry out the unusual job expert contractors were required, and Speedrite, the UK’s leading plant and machinery installation and relocation company, stepped up to the task. Using a combination of specialist equipment – including a scissor lift, fork lift and crane attachment – they made the special delivery.

Once in situ, the wall panels, which are manufactured from a specialist alloy, will create a 12m2 room that will allow York Instruments to test its magnetoencephalography (MEG) device, shielding it from external magnetic forces that would interfere with its operation.

York Instruments was established earlier this year, specialising in magnetic measurements and their healthcare applications.

Chief technical officer Professor Gary Green said the new testing facility will enable the company to put the final preparations in place before officially launching its MEG later this year.

He added: “MEG devices are considered to be the world’s most sensitive functional brain imaging devices. Our MEG device uses an improved sensor that is significantly more sensitive than other devices, alongside quantum technology, which means it has a lower noise floor than traditional MEG devices and can monitor slow wave brain activity.

“This makes it unique, and ideal for resting state studies or clinical applications where slow waves make it difficult to measure what is happening where in the brain. It also means our device can accurately assess conditions that less sensitive equipment simply wouldn’t be able to monitor, such as concussion.”

Following the safe delivery of the protective wall panels, Professor Green said the testing facility will be constructed over the next two weeks, after which York Instruments will begin full testing of its MEG device ahead of launch.

York Science Park CEO Tracey Smith said: “The Bio Centre was designed and built with the knowledge that residents would often require specialist – and often very heavy – lab equipment as part of their day-to-day operations.

“I’ll admit I was a little nervous seeing the contractors removing part of the building façade, but they’ve done a fantastic job and we’re very happy to see York Instruments move forward to the next exciting phase of their development.”

York Instruments special delivery
Part of York Science Park’s Bio Centre facade was removed last week to see the safe delivery of four-tonne specialist wall panels that will create a magnetically shielded room to house one of the world’s most sensitive brain imaging devices

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