Heater – cooler system for microscope
The ability to perform fast and accurate temperature change of a biological sample during microscopy imaging is critical for modern life science research.
Tempocell™ has developed together with the ENS Paris* a patended heating/cooling system for microscope which enables temperature change from any temperature in the range from 2°C to 60°C in less than 10 seconds with an homogeneity better than 0.1°C.
Based on a microfluidic device, Tempocell™ heating/cooling system benefits from the strong thermal efficiency of high speed forced liquid convection with the fastness of thermal diffusion at the microscale.
The thermal power required to heat or cool the sample is first stocked within a thermalization liquid (5 to 15 min warming) using ultra stable macroscopic heater-cooler system far from the sample. After warming up the system, the thermal energy can be transferred from any reservoir to the biological sample using a unique microfluidic technology specifically designed to maximize heating or cooling rate and placed in close contact with the sample of interest.
The thermally assymetric microfluidic heating-cooling device enables to transfer more than 95 % of the thermal energy of the thermalization liquid directly to the sample through an ultra thin glass membrane. As a consequence, the liquid flow used to quickly cool or warm the biological sample is not in direct contact with the sample which remains in standard biological conditions for microscopic observations. Thermalization liquid velocities as high as 1m/s can be obtained in the microfluidic device to ensure a maximal heating-cooling efficiency without disturbing the observed system.
Specific microfluidic designs enables to distribute the thermalized liquids at different temperatures within a very narrow area of the sample, giving an ability of high resolution temperature mapping together with multi zone control. External fluid pressure control systems can rapidly swich the thermalization liquid within the different temperature zones to provide the fastest heating-cooling system ever commercialized.
As a last advantage, the Tempocell™ unique microscale thermalization technology increases heat transfers to the sample by orders of magnitude as regard to classic macroscopic heater-cooler systems. With such a configuration, thermal leakages or external sources of heating or cooling become insignificant and biological systems can be observed using high resolution microscopy with complete confidence in sample thermalization.
The cell culture chamber formed by the association of the microfluidic Tempocell™ device and a classic glass coverslip are designed for each type of cells and provides cell imaging in optimal experimental conditions. Our patented unique technology is also compliant with a number of gel like medium and surface treatment (agar pads, polystyrene slides,…)
Glass substrate chambers have already been applied to :
- Mammalian cells
- C-elegans worms and embryos
- and more …