Planer plc celebrates 45 years
In 2018 Planer plc, formerly known as Planer Products, will be celebrating 45 years of designing, manufacturing, selling and supporting products for a variety of technical uses throughout the world. The company sprung from GV Planer Ltd., founded in the 1950s, primarily a design and research consultancy making one off products for research institutions. It was some of these earlier research products that were the foundations of the equipment that Planer plc went on to develop into commercially viable machines. These continued to evolve over the 45 years into the products we manufacture and sell today.
Slow freezing pioneers
The first birth from a frozen bovine embryo was reported in 1972 - using a very early Planer machine. Professors Rawson and Wilmut pioneering the animal husbandry field. With its successful development and the use of products for controlled rate freezing, the company received the Queen's Award for Technology and also awards from the British DTI for Innovation and Good Practice in Micro-electronics and achieved approval and for the demanding standards of medical device manufacture: ISO13485:2012 & Medical Devices Directive, Annex 11 93/42/EEC: LRQA. ISO 9001:2008.
The use of controlled rate freezers widens
IVF labs were the initial market but later hospitals and researchers found they needed programmable freezing for many types of cells – in areas such as cord blood banking, bone marrow transplants, botanicals, semen, oocytes, skin, ovarian tissue, heart valves and blood vessels. Planer Controlled Rate Freezers continue to be at the forefront of many of today’s scientific breakthroughs using cryopreserved cells.
Forty two years ago in 1976 we conceived our very first incubator whilst collaborating with the then UK Department of Health and Social Services in the production of a new form of anaerobic incubator as an alternative to the prevailing jar system for the isolation of anaerobes from clinical material. The prototype machine was built around 1980 and was tested by a team led by Dr Berry from the Department of Microbiology at St Thomas's Hospital Medical School London, SE1 in 1981. The Planer range of CO2 incubators has since been developed further with the introduction of the very successful BT37 in 2009 and the new CT37stax multi chamber incubator in 2017.
Throughout 2018, we plan to run a series of articles and events to celebrate our 45 years of working with and supporting scientists and healthcare professionals who use our equipment to preserve, protect and nurture all types of cells in many important applications throughout the world.
Pictured here: Professor David Pegg with a Planer freezer in the 1970s.