Advanced Microscopy and Bio-Imaging Laboratory

The Advanced Microscopy and Bio-imaging Laboratory was established in 2002. It is based on the refurbished electron microscope facility of the Institute of Biological Sciences that has been in existence since the mid 1960's.

The laboratory has a Hitachi S-4700 field emission scanning electron microscope (FESEM), a JEOL 1010 transmission electron microscope (TEM) and a JEOL 840A cryo-scanning electron microscope (CSEM) and a Leica confocal laser scanning microscope (TCS SP5). Also available are fluorescence, polarising and interference contrast microscopes. A new addition in 2015 is a Leica LMD6000 Laser Microdissection microscope (LMD).

electron microscopesThe three electron microscopes have digital image collection and all images are stored on a networked central image server.
Comprehensive specimen preparation facilities include Leica EM MM80E “Slam” freezer, AFS freeze substitution apparatus, Leica CM3050S cryostat, and various ultramicrotomes for TEM sectioning.

Some of the software packages that are available for processing digital images include MeX from Alicona, which is a stand-alone software package that turns any SEM with digital imaging into a true surface metrology device. Using stereoscopic images the software automatically retrieves 3D information and presents a highly accurate, robust and dense 3D dataset which is then used to perform traceable metrology examination. The results are obtained irrespective of the SEM magnification providing metrology at macro and micro levels.

Also available is Improvision's Volocity. Volocity will accept a range of file types from confocal and wide field microscopes. Volocity Visualization includes a choice of renderers. The HR Opacity renderer provides fully interactive rendering, which in Fluorescence mode, computes each voxel in the data. Volocity Visualization includes highly advanced rendering algorithms, developed by Improvision to take full advantage of the latest Mac and PC technology. Rotating, zooming and flying through the volume can be done in real time, whilst simultaneously varying the contribution of each channel to the rendered view.

All potential users of this facility should firstly read the Guidelines for users of IBERS Advanced Microscopy and Bio-Imaging Laboratory

The Advanced Microscopy and Bio-Imaging Laboratory is managed by Mr Alan Cookson who has considerable experience in dealing with a vast range of specimens both biological and material and is happy to discuss potential applications and proposals for collaborative research.


Electron and light microscopy: Alan Cookson and Susan Girdwood
Confocal microscopy: Manuela Natoli