Zeiss LSM880-Airyscan FAST Super-Resolution
Single-point, laser scanning confocal microscope

Model Information & Grant Information

  • Zeiss AxioObserver with 880-Quasar confocal module & Airyscan FAST module
  • Cite in your manuscripts (example text): NIH Grant S10OD023548
    (Institutes: Office of the Director [ODand National Institute of General Medical Sciences [NIGMS])
    Installed: Dec 12, 2018


  • Zeiss AxioObserver with 880-Quasar (34-channel spectral, high-sensitivity gallium-arsenide phosphide detectors, GaAsP) confocal module
  • Airyscan FAST super-resolution (max 2x better than confocal) with zoom optics (compatible with all objective magnification) and high-speed acquisition (max 4x faster, but less than maximal resolution)
  • Environmental chamber for 37°C, CO2, & humidity (35mm dishes or chamber slides)
  • Definite Focus II nosepiece (fast auto-focus to compensate for focus drift during sample heating)
  • NA 0.55 condenser (dry only) with DIC for 20X, 40X, 63X and 100X lenses
  • Objectives:
    • 10X/0.45 PlanApo (dry, no DIC)
    • 20X/0.80 PlanApo, with DIC (dry)
    • 40X/1.30 PlanNeofluar oil, with DIC
    • 40X/1.20 C-Apo water, with DIC, upon request
    • 63X/1.4 PlanApo oil, with DIC
    • 100X PlanApo oil, with DIC, upon request
  • 8 laser lines available:
    • 405 (diode laser),
    • 458, 477, 488, 514 (argon laser)
    • 561 (solid-state)
    • 594 (HeNe laser)
    • 633 (diode laser)
  • HXP 100W metal-halide illuminator for wide-field fluorescence
  • Fluorescence filter sets (wide-field; non-confocal):
    • Zeiss #49 for DAPI, Zeiss #38 for GFP, Zeiss #43 For Cy3
  • Airyscan optical filters (vs. confocal which is fully tunable via Quasar)
    • BP495-550+LP570 (dual: green & red emission)
    • BP570-620+LP645 (dual: red & far-red emission)
    • BP420-480+BP495-620 (dual: blue-green & green-orange)
    • BP 465-505 + LP 525 (dual: blue-green & yellow-red)
    • BP 420-480 + LP 605 (dual: blue & red emission)
  • Zen software to control microscope and confocal
  • Separate workstation for image analysis with Zen
  • Download Zen LE software available for desktop computers in your lab
    • Analysis with Volocity, Imaris or ImageJ on our analysis workstations
    • Use LOCI BioFormats to import images into ImageJ

Advantages (over other confocals)

  • Super-resolution (up to 2x better than standard confocal) for all objective magnifications with laser-scanning ease. Maximum resolution ~110nm.
  • FAST module allows balancing speed with resolution (as much as 4x faster than standard Airyscan).
  • Significantly less phototoxicity and photobleaching (high-sensitivity GaAsP detectors allow 10-20x less laser power for the same image quality).


  • Single confocal images or image stacks for 3D viewing
  • FRAP with user-defined photobleach marks
  • Photoactivation at 405 nm of caged dyes and other molecules
  • Colocalization of different  fluorescent signals
  • Speed and versatility
  • Quasar “fingerprint” system separates very closely spaced fluorochromes.  Example:  DPPIV-GFP (Golgi, green) and Albumin-Alexa 488 (ER-Golgi, red)