The ARCHA Advanced Imaging Facility contains both a wide-field fluorescence microscope and a laser scanning confocal system with a resonant scanner and multiphoton laser add on.
In line with ARCHA’s multidisciplinary research approach, this facility caters for groups from a range of academic specialisms, including pharmacy, pharmacology, alternative methods of drug delivery, biology, chemistry, medical chemistry, engineering, and optometry.
Confocal Microscopy uses a microscope in which a certain area of a sample, a point source and a small aperture are in conjugate planes. This means that only a small area is illuminated at any one time. This reduces the damage caused to cells by photobleaching and gives clearer pictures than standard fluorescence microscopy as the amount of out of focus light collected is greatly reduced.
Confocal laser Scanning microscopes such as ours use a laser at the point source and a scanner which moves the laser across the sample. Light emitted from the sample is then collected by a photomultiplier detector, and an image is built using the pixels.
The ARCHA confocal Microscope system is the SP5 TCS II MP made by Leica Microsystems. Key features include:
- 10x and 20x dry objectives
- 10x and 20x water objectives
- 40x and 63x oil objectives
- Upright Microscope
- High resolution Scanner
- Fast resonant scanner
- 8 Visible Laser Lines
- Tunable Multiphoton Laser
- z -stacking
- Time Lapse
- Sequential Imaging
- FRAP and FRET Wizard
- Analysis Computer.
Fluorescence microscopy is a quick and easy method to screen fluorescent samples. The ARCHA Wide-field Microscope is ideal for sample screening, time-lapse experiments and live cell imaging. Features include:
- 20x and 40x dry objectives
- 63x oil objective
- Red, green, yellow and blue filter cubes
- Temperature control chamber
- Stages to fit plates, dishes and slides
- User friendly software
- Image Processing software
- Fluorescence Quantification Software
- Dark room.
Facilities management and use
For more information on the ARCHA Advanced Imaging Facility, please contact Facilities Manager Charlie Clarke-Bland: C.Clarke-Bland@aston.ac.uk.