Simultaneous control of an electrically tunable lens and a pockels cell

We are preparing Scanbox for fast, volumetric scanning, by providing simultaneous control of an electrically tunable lens (to focus on different planes) and a Pockels cell (to control laser power).

The Scanbox card has an integrated, 12-bit current source used to control the focus tunable lens. Similarly, an integrated DAC on the Scanbox card controls laser power via a Pockels cell. The mechanism implemented still allows for user-defined blanking of the margins.  Arbitrary tables can be uploaded from the Scanbox GUI to the card to allow for simultaneous changes in these variables that are precisely synchronized to the frames of the microscope.

Below is a demonstration showing a sinusoidal change in focusing along with matching changes in laser power.  Fast scanning with synchronized depth/power control is coming to Yeti soon!

[vimeo 119605807 w=500&h=280]


  1. Could you share how are you planning to integrate the optotune lens into the scanbox microscope design? The clear aperture on most models publicly advertised is far smaller than the back aperture of e.g. the nikon 16x 0.8NA water immersion objective, which seems to be the most common placement of the ETL. It seems like either you have to accept a drastically underfilled back aperture, or make major changes to the optical design.

    1. Adrian replies — The optotune is placed in a rear conjugate plane to the objective pupil, with 4.5x expansion, and only in the excitation path. So there is almost no change to the optical path, and the back aperture is filled.

      1. Thanks! Sorry, creating a rear conjugate plane is sort of what I meant by a ‘major’ change. Sounds great.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s