Compiled by Steve Smith

GMP pilot plant

OULU, Finland—A new Medipolis GMP pilot plant has been launched here, which will enter global biomedical markets with modern technology intended to help companies bridge the gap from laboratories toward successful clinical development of biopharmaceuticals.

The plant has state-of-the-art cleanroom technology and production equipment. The European medicinal agency, NAM, has granted a production license to the company and regularly inspects plant operations according to cGMP standards.

Medipolis GMP creates partnerships in R&D and cGMP production with biopharmaceutical companies to meet their process development and production needs in pre-clinical and clinical phases.

Single-wafer strategy

ALLENTOWN, Pa.—Akrion's subsidiary, Goldfinger Technologies, has received an order for a 300-mm advanced front-end-of-line single-wafer clean tool. The customer in Japan will use the Goldfinger Mach2 for final clean on its 300-mm wafers.

The Mach2 features patented megasonics for particle removal without etching, and built-in Sahara Dry allowing for watermark-free drying. The tool is available in 200- or 300-mm configurations, and can serve as a bridge tool with wafer size conversion typically taking approximately one-half of a work shift.

Medical manufacturer makes major move

SAN DIEGO, Calif.—In a move that consolidates its manufacturing facility and corporate headquarters, specialty pharmaceutical and medical device company Artes Medical Inc. ( has begun operations at a new site in this city. The maker of ArteFill, said to be the first permanent injectable wrinkle filler to complete FDA clinical trials, is now located in a 35,000-square-foot facility formerly operated by DURA Pharmaceuticals and ELAN Pharmaceuticals.

Included in the manufacturing facility is 14,000 square feet of FDA-compliant, cGMP cleanroom manufacturing suites, plus 15,000 square feet of manufacturing support laboratories. Artes Medical expects to begin production and marketing of ArteFill early next year. The company anticipates it will add 55 more employees before the product launches.

Rice research renovation

HOUSTON, Tex.—Two cleanrooms are part of a recent design/build renovation project at Rice University's Abercrombie Hall (, designed to provide nanotechnology researchers with a clean environment for studying minute mechanisms and configurations.

The 3,000-square-foot facility, built by Dallas-based McCarthy Building Companies Inc., ( includes a Class 100 and Class 1000 cleanroom, conference area and lab support space.

Shanghai surveyed for semi subsystems

MENLO PARK, Calif.—Ultra Clean Holdings Inc. ( says it plans to begin construction of a manufacturing facility in Shanghai, China, early next year. The company develops and supplies critical subsystems for the semiconductor capital equipment industry.

The plant will be located in Shanghai's Kangquiao Technology Park, and will include Class 100 and Class 1000 cleanroom areas for the welding and assembly of gas delivery systems and other major modules of the semiconductor process tool.

Best dressed Senators

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Senators Bob Graham (back), D-FL; John Glenn (front left), D-OH; John Kerry (front center and inset), D-MA; and Bill Nelson (front right), D-FL, show off their cleanroom attire during a tour of the Orbiter Processing Facility (OPF) at the Kennedy Space Center, Fla. Even U.S. Senators are required to don the apparel prior to viewing the orbiter Discovery, currently being prepared for the next space shuttle mission.

PHOTO CREDIT: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
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