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Biomedical Engineering shared labs and equipment

The Biomedical Engineering Shared Laboratories are a collection of controlled access labs in the Emerging Technologies Building that house various equipment shared amongst the biomedical engineering faculty. The main purpose of these facilities is to provide more cost-effective resources for the research groups and to minimize duplication of equipment within the department. User fees for the equipment are assigned on a cost-recovery basis. Equipment training is required prior to use and gaining lab access. Equipment is available to other Texas A&M University departments and external users, however priority is given to biomedical engineering students.

To schedule equipment, visit the Biomedical Engineering Shared Laboratories (iLab) landing page or click the instrument name below.

XYZ printer in lab

3D Printer - XYZ Da Vinci

This printer works with PLA, ABS, Flexible and Tough PLA materials with a filament diameter of 1.75 mm. The build area is 200 x 200 x 190 mm, layer resolution of 100-400 microns, XY positioning precision of 12.5 microns and supports .stl, .3mf, .3w, .nkg files.

An autoclave is a pressure chamber used to sterilize equipment and supplies by subjecting it to highly pressurized saturated steam.

Biological safety cabinets

Biological safety cabinets

HEPA-filtered laminar air cabinet that protects the user, product and the environment.

Tabletop centrifuges are capable of reaching speeds of 14,000 rpm (5810R) and 15,000 rpm (5424) with a maximum liquid density of 1.2 kg/dm3.

IXM confocal microscope

Confocal Microscope — Molecular Devices IXM

The IXM provides improved quantification for live or fixed cell assays. This imaging system features a unique confocal technology to explore more physiologically relevant, complex three-dimensional models including spheroids, tissues and whole organisms and to generate publication quality images at high throughput for samples in slides or one to 1536‑well microplates.

Upright confocal microscope that can do brightfield and fluorescent microscopy as well as confocal reflectance imaging. The system includes 20x, 60x, 100x water dipping objectives, a 5 mW Green (543.5 nm) laser, a 150 mW Blue (457-514 nm) laser and green/red filter cube sets.


Cryostat — Leica CM1950

Performs fine sectioning (1µm-100µm) of tissues or other material at temperatures from -35°C-0°C for histology. Items provided: high and low profile blades, plastic base molds (24x24x5mm), freeze spray, sample disks, brush, tissue freezing medium/embedding compound, cut-resistant gloves

The Cytation 5 Imaging Reader combines automated digital widefield microscopy with conventional multi-mode microplate reading in a unique, patented design.

DI Water

Deionized (DI) Water

This system offers fast dispensing of DI water with adjustable flow rate and real-time quality monitoring.

Differential scanning calorimeter uses heat transfer to measure properties of a sample such as thermal stability and heat capacity.

Dynamic Mechanical Analyzer measures mechanical properties of materials as functions of time, temperature and frequency (dual/single cantilever and compression).

An ellipsometer is used for routine measurements of film thickness and refractive index by measuring changes in polarization as light reflects or transmits.

Ethylene Oxide Sterilizer in the lab

Ethylene Oxide Sterilizer

FDA approved, room temperature sterilizer that utilizes ethylene oxide gas as the sterilant. A standard cycle is 12 hours with a two hour bag ventilation cycle. A 24 hour additional aeration option is available for gas absorbent items. Users must provide sterile wrap or pouches for their items. All other consumables are provided.

This manual inverted microscope is intended for use in microscopic observation and in the micromanipulation of living cells and tissue using diascopic (transmitted) and episcopic (reflected) illumination. Objectives: 4x, 10x, 20x and 40x.

This manual inverted microscope is intended for imaging cell culture in petri dishes, chamber slides or multiwell plates, as well as fixed slides. Contrast techniques include Brightfield, Phase Contrast, DIC (20x only), Fluorescence with LED light source. Objectives: 5x, 10x, 20x and 40x, compatible with coverslips/plastic vessels. Fluorescence Filter Sets: 43, 38, and 49. Axiocam 503 mono camera.

Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy is used to measure absorption and transmission peaks of the components in a sample.

An attenuated total reflection accessory on Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy is used for measurement of solids and liquids.

A gel doc is an automated gel imaging instrument for DNA gels and fluorescence imaging on a couple of different filter options.

Glassware washer

Glassware Washer

Freestanding glassware washer dryer with a wide chamber and 3 levels.

Imaging System – LI-COR Odyssey CLx on desk in lab

Imaging System – LI-COR Odyssey M

This imaging system contains 18 imaging channels, including white light, luminescence (bioluminescence and chemiluminescence), and fluorescence (near-infrared/visible). More specifically, it has 4 laser channels, a chemiluminescence channel, 4 epiluminescence and 4 transluminescence channels. It is capable of imaging membranes, plate-based assays, slides, nucleic acid gels, and protein gels.



The instron allows for mechanical testing of samples using 1000N load cell to test compression and tension.

A lyophilizer is a benchtop freeze dryer used to freeze the material and reduce the surrounding pressure so that the frozen water will sublimate from solid phase to gas phase. This is most often used in samples that will be imaged under SEM and need to preserve their structure.



A microtome is a tool used to cut extremely thin slices of material.

Photo of nanodrop in lab

NanoDrop OneC

Microvolume UV-VIS spectrophotometer that can quantify and qualify DNA, RNA and protein samples in seconds with only 1-2 µL, and obtain full-spectral data. This equipment also has a cuvette option.


Nanoindenter Optics11 Life Pavone

High-throughput mechanical characterization instrument for automated indentation mapping of single cells, 3D cultures, tissues, hydrogels, and films in well plates (2 x 96). Can analyze samples in air with slides and has a 20x objective for optical imaging. No fluorescence or CO2/humidity control.

Nanoparticle Tracking Analysis visualizes and analyzes particles in liquids using the relationship between Brownian motion to particle size by scattering laser light and recording video for analysis. This can be used to see extremely small particles (down to 10 nm).

Optical Tensiometer

Optical Tensiometer — NanoScience Attension Theta Flex

Contact angle meter used for highly accurate measurements of static and dynamic contact angle, surface free energy, surface and interfacial tension, and temperature-controlled measurements from around 0°C-100°C. Extended temperatures available upon request.

A plasma cleaner removes organic contaminants, renders surfaces hydrophilic, promotes adhesion, etc. using O2 chemical reactions in a chamber.



The quartz crystal microbalance measures the frequency and mass of a sample. The crystal has a certain frequency and as proteins stick to the crystal they will change this value which will correlate to the mass.

Rheometers are used to find stress, strain, modulus or viscosity data using a cone and plate with set parameters such as shear, temperature, oscillation, etc.

In a Scanning Electron Microscope, the surface of a specimen is scanned by a beam of electrons that are reflected by a secondary or backscattered detector to form an image.

Slide scanners digitalize slide images to scan, view and share on a cloud server.

A spectrophotometer utilizes a high‐intensity xenon lamp and dual‐beam optical geometry. The instrument fires pulses of light only when taking a measurement and provides strong illumination from the UV to the near‐IR region of the spectrum.

Sonicator in the lab


A sonicator is a programmable system ideal for small volume liquid processing through sound energy. This unit is capable of processing 0.5-15ml volumes of a substance. Applications include cell disruption, protein extraction, and DNA shearing/ChIP assay for durations of 1 second to 10 hours.

A sputter coater is used to coat non‐conducting samples with a conductive gold layer for standard SEM imaging.

A Tecan Plate Reader

Tecan Plate Reader

An enclosed plate reader with absorbance, fluorescence, and luminescence read modes, as well as monochromator-based optics.

Nano Drop

Thermocycler – Edvocycler

Standalone Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) machine that has a 0.2mL tube block for up to 25 samples. The temperature range of the block is 4°C-99°C with a 3°C/s heating rate.

Thermocycler – Mastercycler

Thermocycler – Mastercycler

A Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) thermocycler that allows for running different assays in parallel, one in a 32-well block and one in a 64-well block. It can handle 32 or 64 0.2mL PCR tubes or up to 10 or 24 0.5mL PCR tubes. The temperature range of the block is 4°C-99°C with a 3°C/s heating rate.

Thermogravimetric Analyzer measures weight changes of a sample as a function of time or temperature under a controlled atmosphere (under nitrogen). It is usually for measuring thermal stability or composition.

Thermomechanical analyzer

Thermomechanical Analyzer (TMA)

The Thermomechanical Analyzer (TMA) measures changes in the dimension of a sample as a function of time, temperature, and force in a controlled atmosphere. TMA can measure Coefficient of Thermal Expansion (CTE), along with transitions such as glass transition (Tg). Available probes: Expansion, Macroexpansion, Penetration, Flexure, Dilatometer, Film/Fiber.

This centrifuge delivers fast, efficient separations from samples as small as 175 µl up to 32.4mL at speeds up to 150,000 RPM and more than 1,000,000 x g.

UV Cure Box

UV Cure Box

A compact microprocessor controlled UV flood curing system.

UV Transilluminator

UV Transilluminator Plate

The UV Transilluminator Plate provides brilliant back illumination of transparent materials placed on a filter area designed to illuminate and increase fluorescence.

Vacuum ovens

Vacuum ovens

Vacuum ovens are primarily used for desiccating, vacuum embedding, plating and electronic component processing.

The vibratome performs high‐quality sectioning with a range of 1 to 40 mm.

The Western Blot Scanner delivers industry‐standard digital imaging technology to capture publication quality images.

Skyscan 1272

X-Ray Microscope (Micro-CT)

This X-Ray Microscope (XRM) uses micro-computed tomography (micro-CT) hardware with specialized software to generate an image. It uses X-rays to create cross-sections of an object that can then be used to construct a 3D model of the object without causing damage.

A zetasizer is used to measure size (through dynamic light scattering) and zeta potential of nanoparticles in solution.