Motorized Microscope Accessory Internet Resources
Microscope configurations for live-cell imaging greatly benefit from the application of motorized components to automate rapid filter changes, focus, stage translation, and control of illumination shutters. Listed below are links to the manufacturers and distributors of high-speed filter wheels, electromechanical shutters, axial focus systems, and translational motorized stages suitable for live-cell imaging.
- Applied Scientific Instrumentation
Among the host of products offered by ASI are high-speed scanning monochromators, uncaging flashes (for caged probes), illuminators and laser systems, shutters and controllers, and a high speed filter wheel assembly. The company also manufactures a wide spectrum of automatic microscope stages driven by servo motors for both lateral and axial control.
- Bunton Instrument Company
Founded in 1957 by Paul Bunton in Washington, D.C., the company specializes in upgrading older microscopes with modern illumination and optical systems as well as retrofitting computer-controlled accessories. Among the products useful for live-cell imaging are fine axial focus control units and fluorescence ring-lights for stereomicroscopes.
- Cairn Research
Established in 1985, Cairn Research manufacturers instrumentation for fast, sensitive optical measurements for live-cell imaging and elecrophysiology. Among the many products offered by Cairn are light sources, monochromators, acquisition software, patch clamps, flash photolysis systems, spectrophotometers, and filter wheels.
- C & L Instruments
The company manufactures fluorimeters and fluorimeter components for steady-state fluorescence measurements. They offer complete fluorescence systems for both photometry and fluorescence imaging. In addition, C & L manufacturers cuvette-based fluorimeters, as well as interference filters, illumination sources, filter wheels and detectors and numerous innovative accessories.
- Conix Research
Conix designs and manufacturers computer-automated microscope accessories, including motorized lens turrets, filter wheels, filter cube changers, well plate positioners, remote focus units, and a digital stage controller. Located in Springfield, Oregon, the company also provides specialized accessories for older upright and inverted Nikon microscopes (E400/E600 and TE200/300) that enable conversion of these instruments for live-cell imaging.
- Danaher Motion
Featuring a large lineup of products for motion control, Danaher offers servo and stepper drives, a wide spectrum of motors, precision actuators, and high-precision stages, along with a host of additional products that are useful for custom microscope configurations.
EXFO-Burleigh has more than 30 years of expertise with piezoelectric ceramic technology. The company offers a wide spectrum of products applicable to live-cell imaging including piezoelectric-based inchworm motors for nanometer-scale positioning over hundreds of millimeters and piezo actuators for micron-size translations. In addition, the product lineup features metal halide light sources for fluorescence imaging, micromanipulators for electrophysiology, patch clamp recording, ultra-fast solution switching, cell penetration, and microinjection.
- Franklin Mechanical and Control
A manufacturer of precision stages, Franklin designs a wide spectrum of xyz stages for industrial and biological microscopy applications. The company specializes in constructing precision stages and stepper controllers for custom applications.
- Kohzu America
The United States subsidiary of Kohzu is a distribution outlet for a wide spectrum of rotary, linear, and swivel-arc stages capable of sub-micron accuracy. The large product lineup of motion instruments available from Kohzu features moment-load stiffness and high rigidity, making these stages an excellent candidate for custom instruments.
- Ludl Electronic Products
With the ultimate goal of complete microscope automation, Ludl products can provide a host of accessories for live-cell imaging. Motorized stages are available for upright and inverted microscopes, while programmable filter wheels are offered in either 25 or 32 millimeter diameters. An axial focus system operates with linear encoder feedback. All products are controlled with a highly modular unit that provides high performance stepper, servo, filter wheel, and focus control.
- Mad City Labs
Mad City is one of the leading manufacturers of nanopositioning systems with sub-nanometer precision and offers a large product line for custom applicatons. Products include nanopositioners for atomic force, near-field scanning, and single molecule microscopy, as well as fiber positioning, interferometry, and lithography.
- Marzhauser Wetzlar
Based in Germany, Marzhauser is a leading OEM supplier of manual and motorized stages for all fields of application in microscope. Included in their product lineup are motorized stages, axial controllers, stage inserts, micromanipulators, and electronic controllers.
- Melles Griot
Known primarily for lasers and optical components, Melles Griot also produces a line of electromechanical shutters that feature a reliable, multiblade shutter mechanism to guarantee high operational speed and nearly 100-percent light extinction. The UltraThin-series shutters are designed to fit into restricted spaces, while IES-series shutters include an adjustable iris diaphragm, x-synchronization, and a manual actuation lever that allows the shutter to operate without an electrical signal.
- Objective Imaging
A leader in hardware design and software development for over 50 years, Objective Imaging offers specialized modules for stage, focus, and peripheral control. The company's Oasis line of automation control products enables fast, precise movement of motorized stages, and focus drives to provide real-time video processing for high-performance automatic focus calculations, digital camera synchronization, as well as dual filter wheel and shutter control.
- Optical Insights
Now under the Roper Scientific imaging solutions umbrella, Optical Insights has partnered with camera manufacturers, Photometrics and QImaging, to produce multichannel and hyperspectral systems for quantitative fluorescence microscopy. Among their products are the Dual-View, Dual-Cam, Quad-View, X-tender, and Spectral-DV imaging systems.
- Physik Instrumente
A world leader in piezo-controlled nanopositioning systems Physik Instrumente manufactures automatic axial stages and sample positioning lateral stages. They also offer very high resolution sample positioning with piezo actuators and high-speed tracking systems with digital controllers. Applications include live-cell imaging, optical trapping, and scanning microscopy.
- Piezosystem Jena
A leader in piezoelectrical nanopositioning technology, Piezosystem Jena produces piezo actuators, nanostages, and positioning equipment, including z-axis lens positioning systems. The company offers the TRITOR series of compact multidimensional translation stages and an piezo-controlled objective lens positioning system for fine adjustment of a single lens or the entire nosepiece.
- Prior Scientific
Established in 1918, Prior Scientific offers many years experience in microscopy and allied technologies. Their expertise in mechanical engineering, optics and electronics has resulted in a wide range of quality microscopes, motorized positioning stages and related accessories. Prior motorized stages in particular are leaders in the field and are supplied to leading microscope manufacturers world-wide. In addition, the company has successfully developed many innovative and custom OEM products for their industry partners.
Located in Silicon Valley, Semprex manufacturers precision laterial motion stages, along with microscope stands, vibration tables, axial measuring sytems and motion controllers for industrial, stereo, and biological microscopes. The high-precision motorized stages for inverted microscopes feature open or closed loop systems controlled by stepper motors or servos with rotary encoders.
- Sutter Instrument Company
A leader in precision electromechanical devices for automated microscopy, Sutter offers a wide range of products including filter wheels, controllers, shutters, microinjection systems, and illumination sources. Located in Novato, California, Sutter has been providing quality products to the scientific community for over 35 years.
Based in the United Kingdom, Syncroscopy develops and manufactures digital imaging solutions that vastly extend the capabilities of optical microscopes for three-dimensional and live-cell imaging, including motorized lateral stages and focus control units. Additional products are software for image acquisition and stitching, as well as advanced processing.
- Uniblitz-Vincent Associates
Uniblitz electro-mechanical shutters for optical microscopy are electronically programmed to fire specific exposures at precise time intervals. Vincent Associates offers a complete line of Uniblitz mechanical shutters for a wide variety of applications, including confocal, TIRF, and widefield microscopes designed for live-cell imaging. Shutters are available in 25 and 32 millimeter diameters with a large selection of custom mounting systems and drive units.