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University of Wisconsin–Madison

Acquisition of Sample Processing Equipment for Biological Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM)


The Newcomb Imaging Center (NIC) is a core facility for research and education in the Department of Botany which offers expertise, training, and access to instrumentation in modern microscopy to the community of scientists at the University of Wisconsin–Madison and beyond. Capabilities include confocal microscopy (CLSM, including FRET, ion imaging, and colocalization), scanning electron microscopy (SEM, including ESEM for wet samples), super-resolution microscopy (SIM, PALM, STORM), epifluorescence microscopy and polarizing microscopy.

Both biological and materials samples are welcome. In addition, the NIC hosts microscopy outreach events, demos, and meeting workshops along with assisting a number of UW-Madison classes.

This project will allow for acquisition of two pieces of equipment used for sample preparation in scanning electron microscopy imaging: a critical point dryer and a sputter coater. This project represents an upgrade for campus-wide sample preparation capabilities for scanning electron microscopy imaging. The only existing critical point dryer on campus is in the Wisconsin Centers for Nanoscale Technology (College of Engineering) but because of its design for large materials samples is not suitable for small biological specimens.


Marissa Otegui, professor of botany


Sarah Swanson, core facility director for the Newcomb Imaging

Center (NIC)


Newcomb Imaging Center