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    Flow Imaging

    Flow Imagers are systems that are capable of imaging cells and particles while in flow, at rates of hundreds to thousands of cells/particles per second. The images acquired are then analyzed using advanced software for identifying sub-populations and measuring a wide range of morphology and signal intensity/location on or within these cells/particles.

    How does flow imaging work?

    You pump your fluid sample through a flow cell. This flow cell is oriented perpendicularly to a optic system with high magnification. The system’s camera constantly captures images of the particles as they move past it. Software, specific to the instrument and package you select, then processes, filters, sorts and exports the image data. A huge amount (up to several thousand!) of images are captured per minute, and an automated algorithm processes them, providing both the statistical power and machine objectivity required to make the most out of the process.

    Fluid imaging microscopy remains a new technique, constantly breaking new ground. While it’s potential to complement, even replace existing methods is exciting, you might feel unsure about investing in a technique whose full capabilities remain, as of yet, unexplored or defined.

    Here at Merkel we will be happy to advise you regarding what substances and applications are best suited for this exciting new technique – and which devices and options, either flow imaging or other, are optimal for your purposes

    Flow Imaging information

    Over the past decade, flow imaging has become established as the method of choice for analysis of sub-visible particles orthogonal to light obscuration as a supplement and alternative to light obscuration.


    Through flow imaging is, like light obscuration, a light-based technique, it is generally better than light obscuration in detecting particles with a low refractive index difference versus the surrounding medium.


    Flow imaging is mostly still used in basic research, but has won a niche in several applications outside the lab – for example, detection of silicon oil droplets in prefilled syringes and prefilled double-chamber cartridges. Over the past few years, the technique has also been applied for release testing under cGMP.