Andor Dragonfly receives R&D 100 Award

From the moment the high speed confocal platform, Dragonfly, burst onto the scene, it was clear that Andor Technology, an Oxford Instruments company, had developed a game changing product within the global confocal microscopy space. Since the first commercial laser scanning confocal microscopes appeared in the late 1980s, confocal microscopy has been a main stay of life science research and discovery. With its arrival, Dragonfly challenged the pre-eminence of the established technology by creating a 21st century reinvention of a 90s concept, known as ‘microlens spinning disk confocal’, enabling it to deliver ten times faster imaging, greater sensitivity and gentler specimen excitation, while matching existing resolutions and the capacity to handle thick specimens. In this innovative design, patented illumination, award-winning detectors and new software have been combined to deliver outstanding micro-imaging performance. In January 2018, Dragonfly was recognized by the R&D 100 Awards as one of the most Technologically Significant New Analytical Products of the year.

The Dragonfly family was launched with the 500-series, a multi-modal imaging platform offering microlens spinning disk, laser epi-fluorescence, dual camera imaging with super-resolution and multiwavelength TIRF options. Delivering impressive flexibility, the 500 is a major advance in experimental throughput for single investigators as well as core facilities. The Dragonfly family was recently expanded with the introduction of the 200-series, a smaller form-factor instrument which can adapt to both inverted and upright microscopes: the latter for use in intra-vital and physiology applications and, with water-dipping objectives, cleared tissue imaging.

Dragonfly is a disruptive technology not only because of its startling imaging performance across a range of modalities, but also because of the tight integration of a new, Andor-developed, software platform known as Fusion. When coupled with the speed and sensitivity of Dragonfly, Fusion provides unique user experiences such as real-time volumetric visualization during image acquisition, allowing researchers to view the microscopic cellular world in true perspective as events and structures unfold. Moreover, Fusion exploits graphic processing technology and the latest algorithms for real-time super-resolution imaging, signalling the future in computer-assisted microscopy.

Andor’s Director of Microscopy Systems, Dr Mark Browne said of the R&D 100, “the award provides recognition for all of the hard work and innovation that has been invested over many years in this field by the exceptional research and development, manufacturing, service and sales teams who have contributed to the development and delivery of Dragonfly. We believe that Dragonfly will continue to contribute to great scientific discoveries with its unique blend of capabilities, delivering high quality data to reveal the complexities of life’s most challenging questions. We are truly grateful to the judges of R&D 100 awards, but most of all we thank the scientists, our customers, whose brilliance, enthusiasm and determination lead the ongoing charge of scientific discovery.”


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