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Microbial Solutions achieves ISO 9001 accreditation
Engineering waste disposal company’s quality management systems gain industry standard


Microbial Solutions Ltd (MSL) has been awarded the International Organization for Standardization’s ISO 9001 : 2000 accreditation, an international standard for company quality management systems.

The Oxfordshire company has developed award-winning ecologically friendly bacterial treatment technologies to dispose of hazardous metal working fluids and associated oil contaminated materials used in the engineering industries. MSL’s Microcycle™ Technology turns toxic exhausted metal working fluids and oils into grey water that is safe to dispose of in the sewerage system. MSL also offers a diagnostics analytical service for components of used metal working fluids such as mycobacteria and endotoxins.

The ISO 9001 : 2000 standard specifically applies to MSL’s management systems in relation to “the design and provision of bioreactors for waste water treatment and associated laboratory services”. The standard provides a set of requirements that when effectively implemented, as MSL has demonstrated, provide customers and clients with the confidence that the company can consistently provide a quality service. Conforming to ISO 9001 : 2000 means that MSL has established a systematic approach to quality management and is managing its business to ensure that customer needs are clearly understood, agreed and fulfilled.

Prof William Pope, CEO of MSL, said: “We’re very pleased to have achieved this accreditation so quickly since start up. Since setting up commercially right at the end of 2007 we have worked hard on our quality management systems, giving our clients the reassurance that we can deliver the top level of service they expect.”

MSL was assessed and awarded the ISO 9001 : 2000 accreditation by NQA, the leading assessment, verification and certification body. The NQA assessor who worked with MSL said: “Microbial Solutions has successfully documented a quality system to ISO 9001 : 2000 and therefore registration is recommended. Well done to all concerned.”
Achieving ISO accreditation comes hard on the heels of MSL’s successful commercial-scale trial bioreactor with BAE Systems, the global aerospace and defence systems manufacturer, at its facility in Brough, East Yorkshire. This trial was recognised with a BAE Systems Chairman’s Award for Innovation and negotiations are proceeding with BAE for the construction and installation of a permanent 30 tonnes bioreactor.

The Company was also presented with an Engineering Excellence Award by Ford Motor Company in July 2008, which is awarded for making a significant contribution to engineering or organizational excellence within engine and transmission manufacturing. The Award was presented to Microbial Solutions to recognize the contribution made by the company in devising tests to assess the control of mycobacteria, a microbial bacteria that can contaminate metalworking fluids and has been linked to hypersensitivity pneumonitis, a serious respiratory illness affecting workers in the machining industries.

Metal working fluids are vital in any industry that requires precision cutting of metal. They are essentially cooling lubricants, sprayed in the machining process to ensure a clean cut, and which after use contain a number of toxic chemicals and hazardous biological compounds that must be rendered less harmful before used fluids can be disposed of.

Microcycle™ Technology replaces costly and energy intensive disposal processes, such as vacuum evaporation and ultra filtration which also produce toxic oily waste residues, still requiring treatment and disposal.

Microbial Solutions is a spin-out company from the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, a research centre owned by the Natural Environment Research Council in the Oxford University Science area.

- ENDS -
Editors Notes
Press enquiries to: Margaret Henry, PR Consultant.
Tel: +44 (0)1865 811199 E-mail: m.henry@oxin.co.uk

Photo available on request
Members of the Microbial Solutions team with their ISO 9001 : 2000 accreditation certificate at the DiagnOx Laboratory, Cherwell Innovation Centre, Oxfordshire.

Back L-R: Prof Will Pope (Chief Executive Officer), Tim Goodall (Microbiology Laboratory Manager). Front L-R: Dr Duane Ager (Chief Scientific Officer) and Callie Bowyer (Laboratory Technician).

1. About Microbial Solutions Ltd
Microbial Solutions is a spin-out company from research conducted at the Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, a wholly owned research centre of the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC). In December 2007, the company raised £1.2 million to commercialise its innovative wastewater treatment process and is located at the DiagnOx Laboratory, Cherwell Innovation Centre, north Oxfordshire.
Microbial Solutions has developed a treatment process known as Microcycle™ Technology, which uses a patent-protected collection of non-pathogenic, clever bacteria to remove the toxic components from metal working fluids (oily lubricants used to ensure clean cutting processes in industry) and produce grey water that is safe to dispose of in the sewerage system.
The bacterial consortium has been carefully selected following a worldwide search of hundreds of bacteria that survive naturally in machine sumps, where they eat metal working fluids. In their ‘natural’ conditions in machine sumps, these bacteria can only survive in very low concentrations because of the conditions.

After isolating complementary bacteria that co-exist without destroying each other and eat the different components of waste metal working fluids, Microbial Solutions ensures that they can thrive in its bioreactors by providing an appropriate environment for them to grow and increase in biomass. The bugs convert the wastes to biomass and the process produces some carbon dioxide, which is 20 times less harmful than methane as a greenhouse gas.

Current disposal processes for metal working fluids often require the used fluids to be transported offsite by tanker to specialist treatment facilities. These treatment processes are expensive and leave a residual oily waste that still has be treated prior to disposal. The use of Microcycle™ Technology avoids these issues.
For more information: www.microbial-solutions.co.uk

2. About Microbial Solutions management team
Microbial Solutions was founded by Prof Ian Thompson and Dr Christopher van der Gast of the Centre for Ecology & Hydrology who remain members of the Company’s Scientific Advisory Board, and shareholders along with NERC.

The other founders and management team members include Prof William Pope, CEO, who is one of the UK’s leaders in managing and developing environmental companies over the last 25 years, and four times a winner of the “Technology Fast 50” awards for the fastest growing companies, and is 2008 “Business Innovation Support person of the Year”, awarded by the SPARC Technology Network. Prof Pope is also a founder director and past Chairman of the Society for the Environment and Vice-President of the Institution of Environmental Science, and a non-executive director of EEDA, the East of England Development Agency.

David Whitby, Chairman, is CEO of Pathmaster Marketing Ltd, an oil, gas and energy industry consultancy and was formerly Business Manager with BP Ventures; Prof Geoff Randall OBE, non-executive director, was formerly Director of Global Safety for Astra Zeneca and is Vice President of the Marine Biological Association; Dr David Kelly, non-executive director, is CEO of H20 Venture Partners and a former director of Oxitec, which has developed an environmentally friendly pest control technology; Dr Victor Christou, non-executive director, is Senior Investment Manager at Oxford Capital Partners; and Dr Duane Ager, formerly of the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, is Chief Scientific Officer.

3. About ISO 9001 : 2000
BS EN ISO 9001 : 2000 is part of the ISO 9000 series of standards, designed by the International Organization for Standardization. It is a quality management standard intended for any organisation that designs, develops, manufactures, installs or services any product or provides any form of service.
The requirements cover a wide range of topics, including the organisation’s top management commitment to quality, its customer focus, adequacy of its resources, employee competence, process management (for production, service delivery and relevant administrative and support processes), quality planning, product design, review of incoming orders, purchasing, monitoring and measurement of its processes and products, calibration of measuring equipment, processes to resolve customer complaints, corrective/preventive actions and a requirement to drive continual improvement of its quality management systems. There is also a requirement for the organisation to monitor customer perceptions about the quality of the goods and services it provides.
ISO devises the standards, which are assessed and awarded by third party auditor organisations.
For more information: www.iso.org



Publisher Contact Information:

Microbial Solutions Ltd
+ 44 (0)1865 811199
m.henry@oxin.co.uk

Company profile of Microbial Solutions Ltd
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