applications

Cytoskeleton and membrane dynamics

Dynamic processes in membranes can be followed by epifluorescence microscopy using fluorescent probes and sCMOS cameras, but undesired out of focus fluorescence reduces the signal-to-noise ratio and image resolution.

Working on sub-second time scales, confocal microscopy is ideally suited to following membrane dynamics, since spatial resolution is increased by measuring only the fluorescence of focused thin sample sections, removing out-of-focus fluorescence. In 3D membrane structures, confocal microscopy allows the acquisition of consecutive scans at varying depths. These scans are then processed to obtain a 3D view of the sample.

aurox confocal microscope Image courtesy of Andor (Oxford Instruments Plc)

The following is a suggested Clarity system configuration for this application:

The Zeiss Axio Imager.Z2 provides a high performance upright, transmitted light microscope stand designed for constant operation with a high sample throughput in demanding applications including confocal and fluorescence imaging.

The motorised focus (z-axis) drive ensures precise focusing movements of 10nm step size on up to 9 kg heavy sample stages and over long periods of operation.

Key features:

  • High performance transmitted light stand
  • Motorised luminous field stop
  • Light manager
  • Contrast manager
  • Motorised stand
  • Encoding for read-out of settings
  • Motorised transmitted-light beam path
  • Motorised focus (z-axis) with 10nm step size
  • Motorised for reproducible settings and automatic procedures
  • Modular for ease of maintenance and future upgrade

aurox confocal microscope Zeiss Axio Imager.Z2 - upright

The Aurox Clarity LFC is a laser free confocal device delivering extraordinary imaging performance. It's compact patented optical design and laser-free operation, provide for ease of retrofit to an existing fluorescence microscope, or addition to most new models currently available. The benefits are an affordable confocal device for your own laboratory, eliminating the need to use core facilities.

Features:

  • Laser free confocal
  • Full spectrum (370 - 700 nm)
  • Excellent confocality
  • Unique single camera design with large field of view
  • High throughput
  • Highly cost effective
  • A range of interchangeable filter turrets
  • Real-time control and viewing (up to 50 fps)
  • Suitable for fixed and live specimens


Key Specifications
Operating principleStructured illumination, spinning disk. 3 grid densities for matching sectioning and throughput to objective and sample
Confocality (PSF) 3 sectors provide adjustable sectioning strength down to 0.6 μm (FWHM) with 1.4 NA oil immersion lens
Widefield By-passSelectable mode completely removes disk from the imaging path
Disk rotation speed3000 rpm
Minimum exposure20 ms (1 full disk rotation)
Frame rates (max)22 fps (12-bit confocal imaging, full 2.3 Mpix frame size, no binning), up to 50 fps with 2x2 binning
Spectral channels4 user-replaceable cubes on a fast internal filter turret
Filter switching time<200 ms
Excitation range370 - 700 nm
Emission range410 - 750 nm



aurox confocal microscope Aurox Clarity LFC

The Zyla 5.5 USB3 is the latest 16 bit sCMOS based camera from Andor. It offers high speed, high sensitivity imaging from a compact device that is ideal for low light microscopy.

Key specifications:
Thermal stabilization (°C )0
Read-out noise (e- rms)1.2
Resolution (pixels)2560 x 2160 (5.5 Megapixel)
Dynamic range25000 : 1
Quantum efficiencyUp to 60%
Maximum frame rate (fps)40
Read-out modesRolling and global shutter
Lightsheet modeYes
InterfaceUSB 3.0
SensorsCMOS
Dimensions (mm)133 x 82 x 80

aurox confocal microscope Andor Zyla 5.5 USB3 sCMOS

The Aurox Visionary software has been specially developed for the acquisition of live cell imaging data using the Aurox Clarity LFC unit as part of a laser free confocal microscopy system.

Designed with simplicity and ease of use at its core, the software provides a single graphical user interface, which relates device and experimental settings directly to the connected instrument hardware.

The Visionary software provides for the optimisation and control of the instrument set-up and calibration followed by the set-up and image acquisition control of the confocal microscopy experiment.

Key features of the software:

  • Instrument set-up and calibration
  • Experiment set-up and control
  • Real time confocal image quality inspection tool
  • Supports a range of digital camera manufacturer sCMOS devices, including, PCO and Andor
  • Outputs data in OME Tiff format

aurox confocal microscope Aurox Visionary

Imaris is a commercial software package from Bitplane, designed for the data visualisation, analysis, segmentation and interpretation of 3D/4D microscopy datasets.

Combining speed, precision and ease-of-use, Imaris provides a complete set of features for working with three- and four-dimensional multi-channel images of any size. Multiple volume rendering and modes, clipping planes, cross-section slices will let you create stunning animations and snapshots ready to be used in publications.

Features:

  • Search, tag, and manage your data
  • Organize and manage full experiments
  • Use premier volume rendering in 3D/4D
  • Detect objects using Spots and Surfaces
  • Interactive intuitive workflow
  • Process and visualise data acquired from almost any microscope.
  • Customisable with a wide range of additional, optional modules for specialist applications

aurox confocal microscope Bitplane Imaris

The handling, processing and visualisation of multi-dimensional confocal microscopy live cell images are extremely computer intensive and require the use of a high performance desktop computer.

With this in mind, Aurox have configured a PC Workstation specifically for use with Aurox Clarity confocal microscopy systems.

This PC Workstation has been optimised for handling large experimental data sets and for use with the Aurox Visionary software.

Features:

  • High end Windows 10 Shuttle workstation
  • Acquisition bandwidth for USB3 sCMOS camera support
  • SSD supports real time data acquisition
  • Multi-core processors for multi-threaded software
  • High performance graphics card with OpenGL
  • Includes 24" LCD Monitor
  • Real-time volume rendering

aurox confocal microscope Windows 10 Shuttle PC workstation

Specifications
Type Plan Apochromat SF25
Magnification20x
Numerical Aperture0.8
Working Distance (mm)0.55
ImmersionWithout

aurox confocal microscope Zeiss Plan-Apochromat 20x/0.8 M27

The Prior Scientific Lumen 200 PRO is a 200W metal arc lamp fluorescence illumination system designed for use with fully automated microscopy systems.

Located remote from the microscope for no vibration, the Lumen 200 PRO has an integrated six position motorised filter wheel for fast switching of the excitation wavelength and motorised light attenuation and shuttering. This allows intensity selection over 100 increments for balancing exposure with the sensitivity of your cells and fluorescent markers.

The Lumen 220 PRO model offers extended transmission in UV and IR.

Features:

  • 2000 hour life, 200 Watt metal arc lamp
  • Stabilised DC power supply for consistent illumination
  • Quiet operation
  • Easy to view display screen for bulb life indication and alarm description
  • Knurled light guide clamping knob for secure light guide installation
  • Adapters available for all modern research microscopes
  • Pre-aligned bulb for easy replacement
  • Integrated motorised six position 25mm filter wheel
  • Motorised light attenuator, 0-100% in 1% increments
  • Compatible with ProScan™ III controllers

aurox confocal microscope Prior Scientific Lumen 200/220 PRO

Service contracts can be purchased in 1 year or up to 5 year intervals.

Aurox service contracts include:

  • 1x Annual preventative maintenance service visit
  • Replacement parts and labour (excludes any consumables)
  • Software updates