Sciences and Exploration Directorate

Desmond A Kaplan



Org Code: 699

Mail Code: 699
Greenbelt, MD 20771

Employer: Danell Consulting LLC

Brief Bio

Desmond Kaplan is native of Columbia, MD now living in Tekwsbury, MA. For the last 3 years he has been working with the talented team at Goddard Spece Flight Centers 699 PEL group developing instruments which are designed to study chemistry on other planets. Since a young boy, he has always been interested in space starting first when he attended space camp at Barry Day Camp and visited Goddard Space Flight Center at age 8. He is fascinated at the complexity of instrumentation and enjoys bringing that complexity down to a set of calibratable parameters. He likes teasing out trends from complex series of data and enjoys a good challenge. He started working with ion traps in 1999 at the Center for Veternary Medicine in Luarel, MD as an intern. Since then he has been hooked at what the instruments can do to solve analytical problems. They are some of the most complex instruments yet at the same time are extremely predicatble and controlable. He looks forward to all of the project in front of the team and can't wait to dive in to the details.

Current Projects



Ion Trap Mass Spectrometry Expert supporting the Exo Mars Organic Molecular Analyzer (MOMA). 

During my time on the project in addition to supporting flight activities, I helped to develop the isolation and MSMS troutines that are criticial for determining structure and the organic nature of molecules that may be found on Mars.


Planetary surfaces

The EMILI project is an instrumentation project that will analyze ice samples coming from a lander. The system designed will have a Capillary Electrophoresis Electrospray Ionization instrument as well as an Electron Impact Ionization Gas Chromatograph instrument which will create ions that will go into the ion trap mass spectrometer.

I have been primarily responsible for design and implementation of the ion optics for the electrospray ionization source for the instrument.


Research Scientist

Bruker Daltonics - Billerica, MA

April 2006 - May 2011

Research Scientist responsible for design and development of projects which would lead to product innovations and advents for mass spectrometry.

Electron Transfer Dissociation on FTMS and OTOF
Improvements in isolation waveforms and speed of QITMS and FTMS
Improvements in quadropole performance on QTOF and FTMS
Trapped Ion Mobility Mass Spectrometry

In addition to instrumentation around quadrupole, ion traps, collision cells, ion funnels, RF ion gues. I wrote and published several pieces of software in LabVIEW that were used in research both inside the company and academic colaborators.


Sr. Research Scientist / Global Technology Inegration

Bruker Daltonics - Billerica MA

May 2011 - August 2013

Reserch Scientist responsible for bringing MS technology among the different mass spectrometry groups within the company. Mainly focused on front end ion optics.



Improvements to the quadrupole performance in QTOF and FTMS

Development and commericalization of an ESI Triple Quad Mass Spectrometer

Instrument Scientist

ATA - Kapscience - Danell consulting - Goddard Space Flight Center / Tewksbury MA

January 2017 - Present

Instrumentation Scientist responsible for supporting the mass spectrometry for 699 group

R&D Manager

Bruker Daltonics - Fremont, CA / Billerica MA

August 2013 - February 2017

R&D manager responsible for team doing developement on GC Triple Quadrupole, LC Triple Quadrupole, GC, LC, and ICPMS instrumentation.

Oversaw budget, projects, and managed team covering the product lines listed above.

During factory relocation responsible for R&D and nowledge transfer during production move from CA to EU. Managed Tehcnical / R&D/ Support corrective action team developing tools to set metricts and tracking capabilities for instruments support globaly. Specifically looking for trends which would require changes to hardware and or software to ensure customer success.


B.S. Towson University : Major Chemistry, May 2001.

Ph.D. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Advisor - Gary Glish
Thesis: Advancements to analytical performance of ion trap mass spectrometry, April, 2006