Austin, TX - December 21, 2020


Astrotech Corporation (NASDAQ: ASTC) announced today that its 1st Detect subsidiary has received a Gold Award for its TRACER 1000 explosives trace detector (ETD) in the Best CBRNE Detection System category at American Security Today’s ‘ASTORS’ Homeland Security Awards program.


“We are honored and humbled to receive the award, as it is a recognition of our core philosophy of differentiation through innovation,” said Raj Mellacheruvu, Chief Executive Officer of 1st Detect.  “It has long been known that mass spectrometry is the superior technology for detecting explosives.  We have solved the ease of use and ruggedness challenges of traditional mass spectrometry and we now have instruments deployed and in service throughout Europe.  In addition, with our near zero false alarms, our instruments cost less than the competing technology and we are quickly becoming recognized as technological leaders in the industry.”


The Annual ‘ASTORS’ Awards, now in its fifth year, is the preeminent U.S. Homeland Security Awards Program, highlighting the most cutting-edge and forward-thinking security solutions coming onto the market today. The program is specifically designed to honor distinguished government and vendor solutions that deliver enhanced value, benefit and intelligence to end users in a variety of government, homeland security, enterprise and public safety vertical markets.


“Today, the United States is increasingly focusing on protecting public spaces, as well as IT/cybersecurity networks, and they are calling on innovative companies like 1st Detect to help them do so,” according to Tammy Waitt, co-founder and editorial director of American Security Today. “‘ASTORS’ nominations are evaluated on their technical innovation, interoperability, specific impact within the category, overall impact to the industry, relatability to other industry technologies and application feasibility outside of the industry.”


The TRACER 1000 is the only certified ETD that uses mass spectrometry, the world’s gold standard instrumentation used to identify complex chemical compounds. Checkpoint and cargo certification was received from the European Civil Aviation Conference (ECAC) enabling TRACER 1000 sales in Europe and much of the rest of the world. Additionally, on September 9, 2020, the TRACER 1000 passed the non-detection testing of the U.S. Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) Air Cargo Screening Technology Qualification Test (ACSQT). Upon successful completion of detection testing, which is the next and final phase, the TRACER 1000 will be added to the Air Cargo Screening Technology List (ACSTL) as an “approved” ETD for sales to the cargo screening market within the United States.


“After many years of hard work, innovation and investment, we are poised for continued growth in the security industry which will be followed by product introductions in the fields of agriculture and medicine. This is an exciting time as we begin our scale cycle and we are pleased to have our superior technology be recognized by a leading voice in the security industry,” concluded Mellacheruvu.


About Astrotech Corporation

Astrotech (NASDAQ: ASTC) is a science and technology development and commercialization company that launches, manages, and builds scalable companies based on innovative technology in order to maximize shareholder value. 1st Detect develops, manufactures, and sells trace detectors for use in the security and detection market. Astrotech is headquartered in Austin, Texas. For information, please visit


This press release contains forward-looking statements that are made pursuant to the Safe Harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements are subject to risks, trends, and uncertainties that could cause actual results to be materially different from the forward-looking statement. These factors include, but are not limited to, whether we can successfully develop our proprietary technologies and whether the market will accept our products and services, as well as other risk factors and business considerations described in the Company’s Securities and Exchange Commission filings including the annual report on Form 10-K. Any forward-looking statements in this document should be evaluated in light of these important risk factors. The Company assumes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements.


Company Contact: Eric Stober, Chief Financial Officer, Astrotech Corporation, (512) 485-9530