UCsim2: Super-resolution microscopy for everyone with UC2 toolbox

Abstract number
Presentation Form
Corresponding Email
[email protected]
Poster Session 2
Haoran Wang (1, 3), René Lachmann (1, 2), Barbora Marsikova (1, 2), Rainer Heintzmann (1, 3, 2), Benedict Diederich (1, 3)
1. Leibniz Institute of Photonic Technology
2. Faculty of Physics and Astronomy, Friedrich-Schiller-University
3. Institute of Physical Chemistry and Abbe Center of Photonics, Friedrich-Schiller-University

Modular Microscopy, Education, SIM, ISM, UC2

Abstract text


This work demonstrates a compact multimodal setup based on a previously presented open-source optical toolbox UC2 [1] that combines two different super-resolution microscopy methods, image scanning microscopy (ISM) and structured illumination microscopy (SIM). 

In this work, a new injection-moulded (IM) version of the UC2 toolbox is presented, which allows infinitely extending the baseplate with “puzzle”-like mapping mechanism in X/Y direction and “sandwich”-like stacking manner of multiple layers in Z direction. Injection-molding provides higher long-term stability and lower fabricating tolerances comparing to 3D printing. The IM version is downward-compatible with 3D-printed cubes which provides more possibility to assemble different-sized optical and electrical components into the setup.

The ISM and SIM can be realized in the UC2 framework at a low price and in a simplified setup benefited from consumer-grade laser video projector and open-source digital mirror device (DMD). The setup is used to imaging Alexa Flour 647(AF647)- and Silicon Rhodamine(SiR)-stained HeLa cells. The resolution of the system is determined as  and the total cost of the setup is down to ~2k€. The project information is open-accessed, devices as well as assembly details are available in the GitHub repository[2]. With the UC2 ecosystem, everyone can build their super-resolution microscopes in a low-cost way.


[1]       B. Diederich et al., “A versatile and customizable low-cost 3D-printed open standard for microscopic imaging,” Nat. Commun., vol. 11, no. 5979, pp. 1–9, 2020, doi: 10.1038/s41467-020-19447-9.

[2]       B. Diederich, R. Lachmann, H. Wang, and B. Marsikova, “UC2 Github Hardware Repository,” 2019. https://github.com/bionanoimaging/UC2-GIT/tree/master/APPLICATIONS.