The Nikon TIRF system is an inverted and fully automated Ti-E microscope with TIRF illumination. The Total Internal Reflection Fluorescence (TIRF) system directs the laser beam at a very shallow angle towards the coverslip in such a way that the light does not penetrate but instead it is reflected and an very thin (100-200 nm) evanescent electromagnetic field of light is formed on the side where the sample is. This means that in a TIRF microscope all fluorescently labelled structures as close as 100 to 200nm from the coverslip will become visible but everything else will not be illuminated. In particular for cell biology applications, this means that cell adhesion structures, the membrane and other structures can be studied without interference from fluorescence in other regions. Furthermore as this is widefield system, it employs highly sensitive EMCCD cameras that can be very sensitive and also very fast allowing application on single molecule illumination and even super-resolution techniques such as Stochastic optical reconstruction microscopy (STORM).
Also the system is equipped with high-end electron multiplication charge couple device detector, 4-channel laser bench and broadband lamp illumination, a large selection of objectives, 6 Laser lines, darkfield, differential interference contrast and phase contrast imaging formation.
The Nikon Ti-E Life Sciences is suitable for three-dimensional optical investigations of living biological specimens over long time scales with extensive automation and software integration of all optical components. It includes features as: Incubation chamber with temperature and CO2 control; Piezo stage for high-speed focus control; Z drift compensation for long term imaging sessions.