TimeGate Instruments develops Raman spectrometers with a technology suppressing fluorescence with 532 nm excitation. The company is spinoff of the University of Oulu (UniOulu).  Inventors have a strong scientific background and extensive knowledge in R&D and innovation. The founder team has developed and patented the Timegated® Raman innovation which they have also commercialized. This multi-talented team has a lot of experience in spectroscopy, research, pharmaceuticals, mining, PAT and data applications. For the past 30 years, Raman spectroscopy has been widely used for numerous chemical research applications. Now, the new Timegated® Raman technology broadens the application range of Raman to many new life sciences, geoscience and other applications where fluorescence or thermal interference has hampered successful Raman analyses.

Timegate Instruments’ patented breakthrough innovation is an affordable electrical gating solution using pulsed picosecond range lasers and new CMOS-SPAD (Single Photon Avalanche Diode) array detectors. The picosecond range laser excitation source and a time-gated single photon counting array detector create a totally new type of spectrometer which is able to acquire Raman spectra with real fluorescence suppression. The system rejects the fluorescence interference (which has a longer average delay) while capturing the instantaneous Raman scattering signal. It also enables the acquisition of time-resolved fluorescence spectra by sequentially sampling the emission pulses at different temporal positions. This approach simultaneously opens two windows for material characterization and provides valuable new information in several different application fields.

The PicoRaman spectrometer broadens the application areas of Raman spectroscopy by drastically reducing fluorescence interference. By using patented time-gating technology, PicoRaman spectrometer allows for making the most out of Raman spectroscopy, with new applications in the fields of science and industry. PicoRaman is the only commercial Raman spectrometer capable of time-resolved measurements. Raman spectroscopy has found its way to industrial laboratories and process analytical technologies (PAT) hence becoming a viable tool for a plethora of applications in the pharmaceutical sciences. Raman is a recognized means to analyze non-destructively solid and liquid formulations, phase transitions and polymorphs in all phases of drug discovery, development and large-scale production.

Protein- and macromolecule-based drugs (i.e. biopharmaceuticals or biologics) are manufactured using biological-expression entities such as bacterial, mammalian or insect cells. Such conditions impose a significant biochemical and productional complexity for controlling and quantifying the processes and ensuring the efficacy and safety of the macromolecule products. Raman spectroscopy overcomes many of these difficulties while being a non-contact, robust, insensitive to water, suitable for automation as well as a flexible measurement technique. PicoRaman’s time-resolved detection for fluorescence suppression, advanced pulsed laser and possibility to simultaneously determine the fluorescence lifetimes resolve the current limitations in the research and production of biopharmaceuticals.

Useful structural and biochemical information can be extracted without the interference of water, with minimal sample preparation and without the use of labels by using Raman spectroscopy and microscopy. Cell research and microbiology are prominent areas which greatly benefit of these properties; mammalian and plant tissues, (fixed) cells in vitro and biofluids are examples wherein Raman is typically a powerful analytical tool. Timegate Instruments' new Raman technology also enables non-expert users to produce accurate, high-quality data for analyzing biological materials. With PicoRaman the measurements can be performed in ambient light, in physically and chemically varying environments and without the distraction of fluorescence background signals.