The launch of Sputnik changed Mike Bertin’s life. The lad had wanted to be a field biologist and herpetologist, but the impending technology revolution attracted him. Mike decided on a career in physics and pursued that goal at the Bronx High School of Science, MIT (B.S. in physics), Rutgers University (Ph.D. in nuclear physics), and Stanford University (post-doctoral fellow in physics). At Nucleonic Data Systems he applied the technology of nuclear physics to the design of on-line coating and thickness gauges, and the analytical methods of physics to quality control and process control problems. His Model 200 gauging systems measured and controlled coatings on galvanizing and tinplating lines worldwide. He patented process control methods to automate tire tread manufacture and detect chatter in rolling mills. In 1981 Dr. Bertin founded Gamma Instruments, using new technology to build low cost, high precision thickness gauges.
Mike sold Gamma Instruments in 1986 and pursued his other passion – international travel. Mike and his wife, Barbara, have been to all seven continents. They’ve ridden an elephant up a mountain in Technology, Research, Innovation Thailand, taken the subway in Leningrad, hiked through a penguin colony in Antarctica, admired the mystery of the Alhambra, crossed the Andes in a Land Rover, snorkeled on the Great Barrier Reef, been to the theater in London, and canoed on the Zambezi River.
In 1973 Mike met Ron Cook while installing an NDS coating control system at Republic Steel. The relationship grew during the 1980’s – Ron sold and serviced the Gamma Ray gauges Mike built. In 1997 Mike began consulting for Ron and Scott Cook. He designed the AGT400 thickness gauge, another application of new technology to a measurement problem. From Sputnik to academia to applied physics, a mix of technology, research, and innovation have marked Mike Bertin’s career.