A self-adjusting, holographic & tomographic microscope

A self-adjusting, holographic & tomographic microscope

Our tomographic holographic 3D microscope is the result of years of work and development. 

Through a combination of holography and rotational scanning the system detects changes to light as it propagates through the cell, i.e. the 4D distribution of the physical refractive index (RI) within the cell.

The sample is positioned between a high-numerical-aperture air objective beneath the sample and a rotational illumination arm above the sample. Green light (520 nm) from a diode laser is split into sample and reference beams; this optical path forms one arm of a Mach–Zehnder interferometer set-up.

The sample beam illuminates the sample through the rotational illumination arm at a very steep angle. A hologram is recorded on a digital camera by combining the beam that has passed through the sample with the reference beam. The sample beam is then rotated by a small angle and the process is repeated, with one hologram recorded for each beam position. 

After a series of holograms has been captured, high-resolution images of each plane in the sample are created by computer processing. Improved image resolution is achieved by employing a synthetic aperture and multiple-viewpoint-holographic methods. 

Technical Specifications

Microscope Objective

Air 60x magnification with low power laser (λ = 520nm, sample exposure 2mW/mm2 )


Δxy = 200nm; Δz = 500nm


~ 80µm


~ 30µm

Tomography frame rate

3D image rate 0.5fps, Full self-adjustment

The software STEVE

STEVE is the Cell Explorer’s software counterpart and all you need to dive into the microcosm of living cells. Harnessing your computer’s graphics processor, we designed STEVE to run smoothly, even during acquisition.

Use STEVE’s intuitive interface to control the microscope, explore your data using interactive digital staining and even perform quantitative analyses on your measurements. If you’re happy with your results, you can easily share them online or directly get them 3D printed.

Software features

  • GPU-accelerated 3D processing and display
Intuitive graphical user interface
  • Quantitative staining based on physical markers (refractive index)
  • Versatile statistical analysis tools

Coming soon

  • Integrated Cell Cloud access (optional)
  • Secure copies of your measurements
  • Share your data in publications or directly with your peers
  • Advanced maintenance features
  • Integrated online 3d printing service
  • Access to advanced community-based statistical tools thanks to anonymous data sharing

You will shortly be able to download our software STEVE and see for yourself!

Try the Software

The Technology

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