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Koichi Tanaka with the latest mass spectrometer "AXIMA-QIT"

And On to The Nobel Prize in 2002

A few months on from the Takarazuka symposium,in January 1988 Shimadzu Corporation launched the world's first ever matrix assisted laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometer (MALDI MS) the LAMS-50K. So it was that the laser team's good work had rapidly taken the form of a product. And Tanaka, who had been a key person responsible in the yearlong product development, after transferring to the Scientific Equipment Division, now worked relentlessly together with sales personnel visiting research facilities and pharmaceutical companies in Japan to ardently explain the features of the new product.
Nevertheless, the pharmaceutical companies' real potential needs were even more than the LAMS-50K could offer, which sadly made the instrument a business flop. However, Shimadzu persevered with its R&D in this field.
In 1989, Shimadzu acquired the British precision instrument manufacturing company, Kratos Analytical Limited, and made this company the European center for MALDI development for Shimadzu group total. Koichi Tanaka was seconded to Kratos in 1992 to lend his energetic efforts to the development of the Kompact MALDI Series of Laser Mass Spectrometer.
On December 10th, 2002, Koichi Tanaka was honored with the Nobel Prize as recognition of his unwavering efforts over the last 20 years.

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