When exposing cell samples to the NSRL Beam, some users keep the cell samples in sample containers (such as the T25 or T75 bottles) with only a small amount of medium to keep the cells healthy. Putting the cells into the beam usually involves orienting the containers so that the cells are no longer covered by the medium. This can cause the cells to dry out or become damaged, degrading the results, so it became important to keep the time-out-of-medium to a minimum. To that end, users make use of the remote sample flipper which allows the containers to remain horizontal until immediately before the beam is delivered. The experimenter can then "flip" the samples up into the beam for the exposure, and then flip them back down as soon as the exposure is complete. This means that the cells will be out of their medium for typically less than a minute instead of the ~4-5 minutes required for the complete access. Pictures of the sample flipper in horizontal and vertical position illustrate the procedure. Controls for the sample flipper are a simple manual switch that the experimenters operate, with the help of NSRL operators.
Here the blue foam sample holder is down in the horizontal position. Sample flasks are not visible laying flat within the foam.
Here the samples have been raised into exposure position with the six T25 flask (cell culture on the upstream beam facing side) and medium laying along the bottom of the flasks. Beam is incident from the right. Immediately behind the samples is the black front window of the Digital Beam Imager.
Last Modified: February 1, 2008