The main problem facing researchers when trying to image cell mechanisms is that they occur over very short periods of time and, when fluorescently labelled, the emitted signals tend to be relatively low.
To capture and document such mechanisms and interactions, the cameras used must provide enough temporal and spatial resolution whilst maintaining a sufficient signal to noise ratio.
Sensitive, but not fast enough
To this end, scientists have relied on CCD cameras, as they are both sensitive and feature low noise characteristics. However, traditional CCD cameras are unable to combine these features whilst achieving high frame rates.
An innovative solution from QImaging
Always innovative, QImaging have launched their new optiMOS Scientific CMOS (sCMOS) camera for fluorescence microscopy. An alternative to traditional CCD cameras, optiMOS captures fast cellular dynamic events across a larger field of view without compromising sensitivity.
Featuring faster frame rates and lower noise, optiMOS was designed as an alternative and budget friendly CCD alternative which combines speed with high resolution and increased sensitivity.
optiMOS: delivering a performance unmatched by CCD cameras
“Capturing fast cellular dynamic events such as vesicle trafficking requires high speeds, a large field of view and low read noise – a combination CCD cameras simply cannot deliver,” said Chris Ryan, product manager at QImaging. “optiMOS is the first product that delivers on sCMOS performance yet is accessible within the constraints of typical fluorescence microscopy budgets.”
The optiMOS sCMOS camera offers the following features:
- Speed to resolve fast cellular events
- Sensitivity to resolve low luminescence signals due to short exposures
- Resolution to resolve small cell structures
- 2.1 megapixels at 100 Frames Per Second (FPS) compared to 1.4 megapixel at 10 fps for the typical CCD camera
- Achieves 45 percent larger field of view than standard 1.4 megapixel fluorescence CCD cameras
- <2e- of electronic noise enables high frame rates without compromising sensitivity
- 100 FPS streaming to disk without expensive and complex RAID 0 configurations
The optiMOS camera is ideally suited for a broad range of fluorescence microscopy applications. QImaging designed the camera particularly for:
- cell biologists using live cell, multicolor fluorescence
- biophysicists studying membrane dynamics and protein and lipid trafficking
- neuroscientists looking at ion transport, such as electrophysiology, calcium imaging and ratiometric imaging.