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Microscopy and Histology Suite

The CHIRI Microscopy facility currently houses two confocal microscopes, three fluorescent microscopes, Nuance camera, a histology suite for sample preparation and two data analysis computers in its PC2 facilities.

Learn more about CHIRI’s Microscopy and Histology shared resource facility below.

Open hours

Appointments for training with CHIRI Microscopy and Histology facility staff are available 9am-6pm Monday to Friday (excluding Curtin-observed public holidays). Trained users can access the analysis platforms 24/7.

Attribution and authorship

All data generated using the shared equipment should acknowledge the CHIRI Microscopy and Histology facility, and where any member of the CHIRI Microscopy and Histology facility has made substantial intellectual contributions to the design of your experiment, they should qualify among the authorship list.

Confocal Microscopy
Fluorescent Microscopes and Nuance Camera
Histology Suite
Data Analysis

Confocal Microscopy

Nikon A1+ point scanning confocal microscope


The Nikon A1+ is equipped with 4 lasers (405nm, 488nm, 561nm, 640nm), 4 filters (450/50, 525/50, 595/50, 700/75) with 4 PMT detectors and a spectral detector all operated using NIS-Elements software. It has a range of objectives available (10x up to 100x; dry, water, oil and multi-immersion options) as well as capacity for live cell imaging with a Tokai stage top incubator and perfect focus system.

Instrument specifications | Nikon A1+ Confocal Microscope Configuration Guide

Ultraview spinning disk confocal microscope


The Ultraview is equipped with 6 lasers (405nm, 440nm, 488nm, 514nm, 561nm, 640nm), 6 filters (445/60 and 615/70, 485/60, 525/50, 587/125, 705/90) with 2 EMCCD cameras and is operated using Volocity software. It has a range of objectives available (4x up to 100x; dry, water and oil options available) as well as capacity for advanced live cell imaging with a Tokai stage top incubator, microfluidics, FRET/FRAP, ratiometric analysis and object tracking.

Instrument specifications | Ultraview Confocal Microscope Configuration Guide

Fluorescent Microscopes and Nuance Camera



The two Olympus fluorescent microscopes (one inverted IX-51 and one upright BX-51) have a similar configuration with 3 wide-pass filters (UV/DAPI, Blue/FITC and Green/TRITC) and standard objectives (4x, 10x, 20x, 40x; 100x oil is also available on the BX-51). Both are equipped with DP70/71 cameras with Cellsens software for image capture.

The Zeiss Axioskop 2 has 4 fluorescent filters (DAPI, FITC, Texas Red, Cy5) with standard objectives (4x, 10x, 20x, 40x) and is equipped with a Nuance camera for spectral unmixing (420nm-720nm) using inForm Advanced Image Analysis software.

Instrument specifications | Olympus Microscopes Configuration Guide

Instrument specifications | Zeiss Axioskop 2 with Nuance Camera Configuration Guide

ZEISS Axio Scan.Z1


The Zeiss Axio Scan.Z1 features:

  • Axio Scan.Z1 Automated Slide Scanner for brightfield, linear crossed polarisation (POL) and fast fluorescence imaging.
  • Feeder with 100 slide capacity, 4 standard slides per mounting frame.
  • 35x mounting frame for 4 slides 76×26 mm (25x plus additional 10x for continually loading and flexibility).
  • Fluorescence illumination via long-lifetime, fast and ultra-stable LEDs (385, 430, 475, 555, 590, 630, 735 nm).
  • Penta-band filter for DAPI, GFP, Cy3, Cy5, Cy7 and tri-band filter for CFP, YFP and mCherry.
  • 2 x High-end cameras for brightfield in colour and high-sensitivity monochrome for fluorescence.
  • Objectives 5x, 10x, 20x, 20x POL and 40x corr (dry).
  • High-end PC workstation with ZEN 3.1 Blue Software, including integrated image analysis.

Instrument specifications ZEISS Axio Scan.Z1 Configuration Guide

Histology Suite


The Histology suite contains the following equipment for sample processing/staining with all the basic reagents to operate the equipment supplied by the CHIRI facility:

  • Leica paraffin processing and embedding station
  • Leica cryostat
  • Shandon cytospin
  • Basic H&E staining set

Data Analysis

Data management

Users are responsible for their own data safekeeping and record keeping. There are automated methods for storing data in multiple locations at the time of acquisition and will be covered in the instrument training procedures below.

Data Analysis Suite

The Data Analysis Suite maintains two analysis computers (Mario and Luigi), located on the first floor of Building 305, Room 144. Current staff/student swipe cards are needed to access these platforms.

Analysis software

The analysis computers host multiple software packages, not just for imaging data analysis. For a full list of software available, please see Data Analysis Suite.

  • NIS-Elements Advanced Research (with Deconvolution)
  • ImageJ
  • Volocity (demo version)
  • GraphPad PRISM (version 7)

Training and bookings Instrument training and booking procedures


Training is a prerequisite to independent access to the CHIRI Microscopy and Histology shared resource equipment, and the minimum training requirements are outlined below:

  • Training is provided by CHIRI facility staff and is obligatory regardless of experience using similar instruments.
  • To ensure consistency in training, users are not permitted to train other users.
  • Users are invited to contact the responsible CHIRI facility staff member below to discuss training and for image analysis.

Fluorescent Microscopes and Histology Suite

  • Training consists of a short induction (approx. 30 minutes), after which you will be given login details and booking access. This general induction covers using this equipment/suite in a shared facility environment, general troubleshooting procedures, and the assistance procedures to ensure safety as well as the longevity of the shared equipment.

Confocal Microscopes

  • Please note: each instrument has a separate training program.
  • Training first consists of a basic group induction (approximately 3 hours).
  • This involves hands-on instrument training with standard fluorescent slides to highlight common confocal microscopy principles, as well as an introduction to the imaging software, startup/shutdown procedures and basic troubleshooting.
  • After the general induction and a discussion on the type of applications you want to conduct, one-on-one training/s is required to setup your specific experimental protocols. The follow-up one-on-one training/s enables CHIRI Facility staff to sign-off user competency, and each have independently have met the minimum requirements for using the shared equipment, know some general troubleshooting procedures, and know the assistance procedures to ensure safety as well as the longevity of the shared equipment and the quality of data generated.

Access to platform specific online booking calendars is reserved for trained users only. If you have not received access to the microscopes, histology suite and/or the analysis computers after attending training, please contact CHIRI Microscopy and Histology Facility staff (see ‘Contact us and feedback’ section below).

Contact us and feedback Who to contact about microscopy and histology

CHIRI’s Microscopy and Histology Facility Staff are always interested in ways to improve the equipment and services we offer to support your research endeavours. If you have an enquiry or want to provide feedback, please contact:

CHIRI Facilities Manager

Rob Steuart

Email |

Tel | +61 8 9266 7362

Mobile | 0419 192 971

Senior Technical Officer

Michael Nesbit

Email |

Tel | +61 8 9266 2201

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