Microscopy and Imaging Center

The Microscopy & Imaging Center serves a wide range of faculty and students at Texas A&M University in addition to researchers from outside of the university. Our mission is to provide current and emerging technologies for teaching and research involving microscopy and imaging in Life and Physical Sciences on the Texas A&M campus and beyond, training and support services for microscopy, sample preparation, in situ elemental/molecular analyses, as well as digital image analysis and processing. We are promoting cutting edge research in basic and applied sciences through research and development activities, as well as quality training and education through individual training, short courses and formal courses that can be taken for credit.


Leica SP8 Confocal, STED, FLIM System: The Leica SP8 confocal microscope is for live cell imaging with high-speed, multi-spectral, super-sensitivity, super-resolution, and fluorescence lifetime capability.

Olympus FV1000 Confocal Microscope: Confocal microscope capable of optical sectioning and 3D imaging of fluorescently labeled samples.  Both live (BL1) or fixed, fluorescently-stained samples are both compatible.

Leica DM6B: Upright motorized microscope with fluorescence, phase contrast, DIC, polarization, and image stitching.

Zeiss Axiophot: This light microscope is equipped for bright field (transmitted and reflected), phase contrast, transmitted and reflected polarization, Nomarski differential interference contrast microscopy.

FEI Tecnai G2 F20 ST FE-TEM-Materials: Morphological, crystallographic, and elemental analysis of bulk and nanoscale materials.

FEI Tecnai G2 F20 Cryo FE-TEM:

  • Z-contrast dark-field STEM imaging using HAADF detector
  • Oxford instruments EDS detector
  • EELS (Electron Energy Loss Spectroscopy) for elemental mapping and high contrast zero energy loss imaging of thicker samples
  • Automated collection of tilt series for room temperature or cryo-electron tomography in TEM or STEM mode

JEOL 1200 TEM: Provides excellent contrast for biological as well as materials samples with double condenser projection lens and bright/dark field imaging.

FEI Quanta 600 FE-SEM: The Quanta 600 FEG is a field emission scanning electron microscope capable of generating and collecting high-resolution and low-vacuum images.

Tescan Vega SEM: Investigation of non-conductive samples is possible in the variable pressure mode and the Oxford EDS detector allows for the characterization of elements in a sample.

Leica Cryo GP 2: For vitrification of macromolecular complexes and nanocomplexes used in cryo-TEM imaging.

Pelco Easiglow Glow Discharge Apparatus: This machine is used to render EM grids with a support film more hydrophilic to improve dispersion of aqueous samples for TEM imaging.

Cressington 308 Evaporative Coater: This coater is for carbon coating of samples for SEM by applying a coating of mica to produce carbon support film for TEM.

Cressington 208HR Sputter Coater: This coater is equipped with a turbo molecular pump and is dedicated for coating high resolution imaging on the Quanta FE-SEM.

Cressington 108 Sputter Coater: This instrument is used for coating of samples for scanning electron microscopy. It is currently set up for coating with gold.  The operation is shown in the video below.

Diener Zepto Plasma Cleaner: This plasma cleaner equipped with argon and oxygen gas supply is used to clean surfaces and cause surface activation for bonding polymers.  It may also be used for cleaning glass coverslips for TIRF microscopy.

Pelco Biowave: This is a sophisticated cold microwave oven that permits efficient and effective fixation, embedding, staining, and immunostaining.

Fischione Model 1010 Ion Mill: Precision ion milling and polishing system for TEM specimens.

American Optical Heavy Duty Sliding Microtome: For sectioning of hard and tough samples for light microscopy such as wood and bone.

Microm Rotary Microtome: For sectioning of wax-embedded samples for light microscopy.