Spinning Disk Confocal

At 3i we incorporate the Yokogawa CSU line of spinning disk confocals in our turnkey imaging systems. Along with electron multiplication CCDs (EMCCD), LaserStack laser launch, TTL Synchronization electronics and SlideBook software, the systems capture data rapidly with minimal photodamage.



Rat basophilic leukemia (RBL) cells.

CSU-X1  |  Speed


• Highest speed spinning disk confocal fast 3D imaging


• 50µm pinholes optimized for high NA objectives


• Far lower photodamage than point scanning


• Optimized for interline or EMCCD cameras


• Available for 1 or 2 cameras


• Available disk-bypass mode for widefield imaging

Z Projection from 50µm thick mouse brain section imaged with a 63x 1.4NA objective with a CSU-W1 and sCMOS camera. Genetically express YFP (Green), GAD65 stained with Alexa 555 (Blue), and NeuN stained with Alexa 647 (Red). 

CSU-W1  |  Deep and clear


• Increased pinhole spacing for decreased cross-talk and deep tissue imaging


• 50µm and 25µm pinhole disks for high and low NA objectives


• Large field of view for sCMOS and 1K EMCCD cameras


• Available simultaneous 2-camera imaging or 2-channel split-view imaging


• Double-disk design includes bypass position for widefield imaging


• Available near IR excitation to 785nm

Confocal imaging via spinning disk involves scanning a field with laser light from a number of pinholes arranged in a pattern on a modified Nipkow disk. Unlike laser scanning confocal microscopes (LSM) which scan one point of laser light across an entire field, a spinning disk confocal scans approximately 1,000 points of laser light across the field simultaneously resulting in much faster image production. In a traditional LSM the detector is a photomultiplier tube which can register the signal from only one point of light (pixel) at a time and with a typical quantum efficiency of 40-50%. In an SDC the detector is a CCD camera which can register the signal from a quarter million or million pixels simultaneously with a quantum efficiency of upwards of 90%. The result is that while LSMs can typically image on the order of one full frame per second, SDCs can image at over 1,000 frames per second. This significant speed difference combined with the superior sensitivity of high end CCDs has made spinning disk confocal a must have technology for advanced live cell imaging labs.

The CSU SDCs use a proprietary disk configuration with two disks, one with pinholes for sharp confocal imaging and the other with microlens-covered pinholes to capture illuminating light which otherwise would be blocked by the disk. The result is illumination from the microlens disk through the pinhole disk for strong excitation of fluorophores, causing a fluorescence emission which in turn passes through the pinhole disk with high confocality. Detection of the signal via an electron multiplication CCD camera allows image capture at speeds to hundreds of frames per second as demanded today by live cell imaging. Furthermore 3i proprietary TTL Synchronization electronics and SlideBook software allow blanking of the illuminating laser light in the time between camera exposures resulting in the minimum possible unwanted photobleaching of cells.

Find out more


Phone: +1 (303)-607-9429 x1
Email: sales@intelligent-imaging.com

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Phone: +1 (303)-607-9429 x2
Email: support@intelligent-imaging.com

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