Business

Thermo Fisher thinks smaller

Thermo Fisher Scientific’s TruNarc is a hand-held device that analyzes narcotics. It is being used in 17 countries, by police, customs, and border patrol officers. The Quincy Police Department has three of them.
Thermo Fisher Scientific’s TruNarc is a hand-held device that analyzes narcotics. It is being used in 17 countries, by police, customs, and border patrol officers. The Quincy Police Department has three of them.

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Midway through my recent visit to the Tewksbury office of Thermo Fisher Scientific, my hosts broke the bad news: We don’t have any drugs. Evidently, this was a bring-your-own kind of meeting and no one had told me.

I was at Thermo Scientific, to be honest, because it is incredibly hard to understand what this enormous Massachusetts company does. Unless you wear a white lab coat at work, chances are you don’t run into Thermo’s products very often.

The product I went to Thermo to see last month, the TruNarc hand-held narcotics analyzer, provides a good way to grasp an important new strategy for the company: getting sophisticated instruments out of the labs and into all sorts of different environments, from pawn shops to police cruisers.

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