MVM virus image

Atomic force microscopes

Cutting-edge AFM capability for biomedical research and biological material
Access state-of-the-art instrumentation and expertise in BioAFM for automated quantitative nano-mechanical imaging. Analyse and manipulate single viruses, live cells, tissues and delicate materials at the scale of atoms and molecules with our first-in-country precision instruments.

Our facility provides access to multiple scanning probe microscopy techniques including, non-contact and force-distance based AFM, cell force spectroscopy, high-speed AFM, quantitative nanomechanics, magnetic force microscopy (MFM), and conductive AFM, among others.

What can I do with atomic force microscopy?

  • Perform simultaneous correlative BioAFM and optical microscopy (including fluorescence and confocal microscopy) to accurately determine physical, chemical, and biological properties of single cells and tissue.
  • Run high-speed AFM to unveil real-time dynamics at the single-molecule level.
  • Execute accurate cell adhesion studies.
  • Determine mechanical, electric, and magnetic properties of materials at the nanoscale, and much more.
  • Applications include the identification of biomarkers for infectious diseases and cancers, and materials engineering.

Our facilities

This bespoke JPK NanoWizard V BioAFM with Hybrid stage, coupled to an integrated widefield and Ax-R advanced confocal microscope, combines high spatio-temporal resolution in nano-mechanical imaging with advanced imaging capabilities.

NanoWizard V bioScience AFM with Hybrid stage features:

  • Nanomechanical mapping and characterisation of single molecules, cells, tissues, and highly delicate samples - the leading BioAFM for mechanobiology applications.
  • AFM head designed with automatic laser alignment and adjustment for easy set up.
  • Fully compatible with optical microscopy (confocal, widefield, fluorescence, DIC).
  • Includes a PetriDIsh Heater and access to CO2 for long-term live cell studies.
  • Tip-Scanning technology with a range of 100 x 100 x 15 µm3 for easy operation in air, gases, and liquids.
  • The Hybrid stage includes an additional scanner with a range of 100 x 100 x 100 µm3. The system can overlay the optical microscopy image with AFM information, and the hybrid stage enables scanning in the mm range through tiling.
  • Ability to study dynamic biological processes in real time via adaptive, intelligence-based scanning routines (up to 400 lines/sec), fast force mapping and molecular recognition.
  • SPM V8 software for state-of-the-art analysis and batch processing routines.
  •  PeakForce-QI, the symbiosis of PeakForce Tapping and QI modes, delivers fast, controlled, and flexible nanomechanical measurements.
  • Applications of the instrument include correlative AFM and optical microscopy, cell and tissue nanomechanics, cell adhesion studies (single-cell spectroscopy), and magnetic force microscopy (MFM).

Nikon Ax-R advanced confocal microscope features:

  • Nikon Ax-R confocal system with Ti2 inverted microscope and camera for superior optical performance.
  • System includes both a high-resolution scanner (8k x 8k) and a high-speed scanner (2k x 2k), with 4 lasers (405 nm, 488 nm, 651 nm, and 640 nm).
  • System can also operate in widefield microscopy and incorporates a Sola V-nIR light module and an ORCA-Fusion BT Digital CMOS camera.

The JPK NanoWizard ULTRA Speed 3 is a premier high speed imaging AFM platform that provides up to 1,400 lines/second on suitable samples, high resolution imaging of biological and other soft samples in air or liquid, precise force spectroscopy, and nanomechanical force mapping.

NanoWizard ULTRA Speed 3 features:

  • High-speed imaging AFM that acquires up to 1,400 lines per second.
  • Scanner range is 30 x 30 x 8 um3 and the instrument can operate in air and liquids.
  • The system includes a motorised sample stage and a top view optical microscope for sample inspection.
  • System enables acquisition of topography and mechanical properties for bio-samples including single molecules and viruses.
  • PeakForce Tapping® for easy nanomechanical imaging and direct force control at ultra-low forces preventing damage to your samples and probes.
  • New tiling functionality for automated mapping of large sample areas.
  • SPM V8 software.
  • State-of-the-art position sensor delivers the highest accuracy and maximum precision while imaging.

Banner image credit: Image acquired in liquid environment with atomic force microscopy by Dr David Martinez Martin.