Airyscan is a detector that draws on the fact that a fluorescence microscope will image a point-like source as an extended Airy disk (Airy pattern). In a standard confocal microscope the out-of-focus emission light is rejected at a pinhole, the size of which determines how much of the Airy pattern reaches the detector. In a standard confocal microscope, you get a sharper image by gradually closing the pinhole to reject out-of-focus light. However, it’s also dimmer since a great deal of light is then lost. The smaller the pinhole, the higher the resolution, but – equally – the greater the loss in light.
Airyscan solves this conundrum between resolution and light efficiency by imaging the Airy disk onto a concentrically-arranged hexagonal detector array. Its detection area consists of 32 single detector elements, all of which act like very small pinholes. The confocal pinhole itself remains open and doesn’t block light – thus all photons of the whole Airy disk are collected.
The signals from all detector elements are then reassigned to their correct position, producing an image with increased signal-to-noise ratio and resolution.
An area detector consisting of multiple detector elements allows great flexibility in imaging modes. In Fast mode, the excitation beam is elongated in y and, with one horizontal scanner movement, the Airyscan detector acquires four lines of image information instead of only one. This parallelization delivers a unique combination of high speed, high resolution and high sensitivity. Airyscan capitalizes on the scanning and optical sectioning capabilities of a confocal and therefore works with your standard samples, standard dyes and even with thicker samples such as tissue sections or whole animal mounts that need a higher penetration depth.
It's up to you whether you use the strengths of Airyscan and its unique Fast mode to get better signal-to-noise, superresolution or speed. With single or multiphoton excitation.
It takes multiple labels to analyze interactions between different cellular or subcellular structures. Gain new insights into biological structures and processes by acquiring the entire fluorescent spectra of all your labels at once. LSM 880 delivers 32 channels with 10 nm spectral resolution and 512 x 512 pixels at 5 fps.
Set up 10 channels for multichannel spectral imaging and then add the transmission detector. You can now image all fluorescent dyes and the additional oblique contrast in a single scan. This protects your sample and saves time, too.
Especially for those demanding multiphoton experiments, you have the advantage of this fundamental capability: up to 12 non descanned detectors can be read out in parallel.