4555 Runway St. • Simi Valley, CA 93063
Tel (805) 582-0155 • Fax (805) 582-1623
• Analog bandwidth to 8 GHz.
• FC, SC, and ST receptacles.
• Active diameter from 50 µm to 5 mm.
• Standard and custom ceramic submounts.
• TO-style packages available with flat
AR-coated windows, ball lens and dome lens.
• Standard axial pigtail packages and
miniature ceramic pigtail packages, all
available with low back-reflection fiber.
Imaging / Sensing
behavior. Laser-based microscopy techniques such as confocal imaging are vital here because they can uniquely provide
imaging with chemical specificity—for ex-
ample, mapping the locations of different
fluorescently labeled gene products, or vi-
sualizing areas of increased metabolic ac-
tivity using calcium-ion (Ca2+) imaging.
However, their spatial resolution is limited to > 20 nm, even with superresolu-tion techniques.
As a result, many life-science research-
ers are looking to combine fluores-
cence-microscopy information with data
from other modalities that provide higher
resolution, such as the atomic-force microscope (AFM) and the reflection elec-
tron microscope (REM). Ideally, all these
modalities should be integrated in a sin-
gle platform. This has led to mergers and
acquisitions among instrument makers,
and has resulted in OEM companies fo-
cusing on their core competencies such as
fluidics, chemistry, signal processing, and
software. The simplest and most cost-effective instrument development solution
for these OEMs is to outsource photon-ic expertise.
Standardized modules with
Each new instrument and application
has its own specific requirements, but
clearly it is not cost-effective for instru-
ment manufacturers to define a new custom engine in each instance. Instead, la-
ser manufacturers are supporting this
need with a new generation of standardized modules with only limited custom-
ization or configuration needed for each
specific application. In short, the same
plug-and-play functionality introduced
to OPSLs in 2010 is now being extended to encompass complete laser engines
The goal with each application is to provide standard modules with the flexibility necessary to meet the needs of at least
95% of instrument platforms. The first
success was in microscopy, where end users and instrument builders needed the
ability to connect and interchange numerous visible laser wavelengths and powers.
Coherent’s OBIS Galaxy was developed
to fulfill this need, allowing fiber-cou-
pled lasers (from 405 to 640 nm) to be
brought in or out of the system via thread-
ed FC/UFC single-mode fiber connectors.
This reduced the time needed to connect
a new laser down to seconds, rather than
the traditional hours for conventional fi-
ber coupling. Because of the wide variety
of laser wavelengths used in microscopy,
this approach by necessity relied on us-
ing standalone smart lasers coupled into
a central module.
However, in flow cytometry, the laser
wavelengths are very standard—most
multiwavelength instruments use 405,
488, and 640 nm, with 561 nm some-
times added to the mix. As a result, a new
FIGURE 2. Many fluorescence microscopy experiments use two or more excitation
wavelengths. These total internal reflection fluorescence (TIRF) images show the Tm1A
protein binding to actin fibers taken from Drosophila; the red signal is from Cy5-labeled Tm1A
fluorescence excited at 640 nm, and the green signal is from Alexa488-labeled actin excited
at 488 nm. (Reproduced with permission from J. Y. Hsiao, L. M. Goins, N. A. Petek, and R. D.
Mullins, Curr. Biol., 25, 12, 1573–1582 )