The BIF has equipment to cut thick samples using a vibratome or ultra-thin sections with ultramicrotomes. Ultramicrotomy is a method for slicing specimens into extremely thin slices, called ultra-thin sections (usually >100nm thick), that can be studied and documented in a transmission electron microscope (TEM). It is commonly used for biological specimens, but sections of plastics and soft metals can also be prepared.
|Leica VT1000S Vibratome|
- Vibrating blade microtome
- Produces thick sections (> 5 um) of fixed or fresh tissue without freezing or embedding in resin for light microscopy
BIF members: $7.92/hr, Academic users: $13.2/hr
The frequency can be adjusted from 0 – 100 Hz
The amplitude can be adjusted from 0.2 – 1 mm in 5 mm increments
Knife advance speed is adjustable from 0.025 to 2.5 mm/sec
The section window and specimen retraction mechanisms are programmable
Samples are usually embedded in agar or gelatin for support
Three ultramicrotomes are available in the BIF for cutting semi-thin and ultra-thin sections (<100nm) of resin embedded material for light microscopy and TEM.
Microtome: BIF members: $15.84/h, Academic users: $26.40/h
Cryo-ultramicrotomy: BIF members: $165/day, Academic users: $275/day
|Leica UC7 with FC7 cryo-chamber|
- Cryo-ultramicrotome for cutting frozen samples for the Tokuyasu technique for immunolabelling, and for high-pressure frozen samples for cryo-electron microscopy for vitreous sections. FC7 cryo-chamber maintains the temperatures as low as -160C.
|Leica Ultracut T with FCS cryo-chamber|
|Reichert Ultracut E |
|Leica EM KMR2 Glass Knife breaker|
The Leica EM KMR2 glass knifemaker produces 45 glass knives from 6.4, 8 and 10 mm thick glass utilizing the balanced-break method.
Glass knifemaker including 1 strip of glass: BIF members: $13.20/each, Academic users: $20/each