A SCOTTISH chemistry teacher who makes science gifts has sold his products to hundreds of people around the world in just a few months.

Damian Hardacre set up Atoms to Astronauts – which sells notebooks, mugs and prints – in February.

He officially launched the Aberdeen-based business in May and sales have soared since then. Around 40% of customers live in the US but Hardacre has also shipped his products to Australia, Korea, China, Sri Lanka and Brazil.

“If you were to get given a science gift it’s a periodic table or a mug or something,” Hardacre told The National. “I made one design and put it on a chemistry forum on Reddit and it was really popular. People were asking where they can buy it so I looked into selling it.”

Hardacre said he always wanted to start his own business but didn’t know how, adding: “It all happened organically. The target market is people interested in science: academics, researchers, science teachers and also people who like science but don’t work in the field.”

Hardacre said in the past when he had bought science-themed products online they would often have the wrong formulas on them.

He went on: “There is demand for high quality science themed gifts. As a chemist I can tell if something has a wrong formula, for example. I have sent them out to physicists to proofread formulas.

“They are made by someone who loves science and the products are well-made by the manufacturer for me.”

The National:

Hardacre said he was surprised by how many people bought his products as soon as they launched, saying: “ I don’t know how they are finding us. A lot of it is word of mouth – people telling family and friends.

“We’ve had 60 reviews so far and 100% of them are five stars. It almost looks like fake reviews at the moment as there are no complaints.”

He added: “I want to build a community around it. There are lots of people who work in science/STEM but they have nothing to rally around.

“I want to represent science and maths in as good a light as possible as it has been bashed in recent years by people who are anti-vaxxers and climate change deniers.”