Raymond March was born in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. March’s childhood was shaped by World War II, and by a mysterious polio-like paralysis which caused him to miss a great deal of school. He took an apprenticeship with PAMETRADA (Parsons and Marine Engineering Turbine Research and Development Association) Research Station before gaining admittance to University of Leeds. There he majored in chemistry and was in the University Air Squadron. He accepted a scholarship to the University of Toronto, where he worked on flash photolysis with John Polanyi.
March developed a needle loop technique at Johnson & Johnson, then took a postdoc position in at McGill University, where he worked on methyl metals and microwave discharges; on atmospheric chemistry; and on aluminum trimethyl and impact work for Gerald Bull, who built the supergun. He took an assistant professorship at the brand-new Trent University in Peterborough, Ontario. On a sabbatical in France, March learned mass spectrometry and ion traps from Jean Durup and has continued to specialize in quadrupole mass spectrometers and to refine ion traps. Becoming interested in flavonoids, March established the Trent University Water Quality Centre and added an interest in antibiotics. March discusses his contributions to the establishment of Trent University; his role on the editorial board of the International Journal of Mass Spectrometry; his many friends and colleagues; his trips to Europe; funding; and his patents. He concludes with an encomium of the quadrupole ion trap mass spectrometer on the Rosetta mission to characterize a comet.
Michael A. Grayson is a member of the Mass Spectrometry Research Resource at Washington University in St. Louis. He received his BS degree in physics from St. Louis University in 1963 and his MS in physics from the University of Missouri at Rolla in 1965. He is the author of over 45 papers in the scientific literature. Before joining the Research Resource, he was a staff scientist at McDonnell Douglas Research Laboratory. While completing his undergraduate and graduate education, he worked at Monsanto Company in St. Louis, where he learned the art and science of mass spectrometry. Grayson is a member of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry (ASMS), and has served many different positions within that organization. He has served on the Board of Trustees of CHF and is currently a member of CHF's Heritage Council. He currently pursues his interest in the history of mass spectrometry by recording oral histories, assisting in the collection of papers, and researching the early history of the field.
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