by Andrew Anderson, Vice President Innovation, Informatics Strategy
As an annual event for ACD/Labs (this will be our 23rd Pittcon conference!), the 2019 Pittcon represents an especially significant moment in ACD/Labs’ history.
First, as you may be aware, we are celebrating 25 Years in business.
I’m proud to have been working with ACD/Labs (first as a customer, then later as an employee) since 1998. It’s been an incredibly rewarding experience so far, and I look forward to what the future has in store for us all!
Along those lines, we will be launching a new product at Pittcon, 3 years of development in the making…
So while I won’t steal any of our Marketing Department’s Pittcon Product Release Thunder, I think it might be useful for readers of this blog to consider the following: imagine you are responsible for conducting one hundred (or 96, or 384, or 1536!) synthesis experiments tomorrow. Now, visualize all of the software systems you must interact with in order to ultimately complete those experiments.
- First, you must determine which reaction conditions are most suitable for your synthetic targets. Unless you have an encyclopedic knowledge of chemistry, you’ll likely interact with some sort of reaction planning software tool to establish a conceptual design of your experiments.
- Then, based on that conceptual design, you must procure the appropriate reagents, starting materials, consumables and equipment required for your experiments. Presumably you’d need to interact with some sort of inventory management system to either order or find the necessary materials.
- Then, you need to establish a physical design of your experiment, especially if you want to run those 100s or 1000s of experiments in parallel. Think of the layout of your stock solutions or neat materials, how and when those stocks are dispensed into reaction vessels, when you stir, when you heat/cool, when you evaporate dispensing solvents, when you sample during the course of the reactions, etc.
- Then, presuming that you have prepared analysis samples (and hopefully those samples have a digital link back to reaction information), you must load them onto an autosampler for analytical experimentation—yet another software interface.
- Finally, you must associate the analysis results back to your original conceptual design, to determine what’s next: another round of synthesis, purification, registration, inventory submission…again, all more software interfaces.
When I think of this challenge, my head spins! Those intrepid scientists that are responsible for such experiments have my admiration, and our offer to help. Our new product is intended to help scientists confronted with such challenges. If you’re interested in learning more, please do stop by our booth at Pittcon (Booth #2116). See our full Pittcon Schedule here.
Finally, I’d like to relay that we have worked closely with a dedicated, patient, group of customer-collaborators. While I can’t thank them by name, I must relay to them that our collaboration over the last three years has been one of the hallmark experiences of my career. I trust that our mutual efforts will yield great value for them.