01 Dec 2009



The OCTOPUS (Optics Clustered to OutPut Unique Solutions) imaging cluster offers a range of imaging techniques including multidimensional single molecule microscopy, confocal microscopy and optical profilometry.


Welcome to the home of the Octopus imaging cluster. This is an advanced imaging facility containing a mixture of in house-built and commercial systems operating in partnership with its sister facility ULTRA. The variety of multicolour light sources in Octopus gives the flexibility to combine multiple beams, multiple colours and timing capabilities.​

A range of multicolour light sources give unprecedented flexibility to combine multiple beams, multiple colours, and timing capabilities. Octopus offers a range of imaging techniques including several modes of multidimensional single molecule microscopy (particle kinetics and dynamics in live cells via single particle tracking colocalisation, single particle FRET and single particle polarisation, and structure determination in fixed cells - at ~5 nm resolution via fluorescence localisation with photobleaching (FLimP)), super-resolution microscopy (STORM, PALM, SIM, STED), and confocal microscopy (FLIM, FRET, and multiphoton).

The modular nature of Octopus allows the development and exploitation of new advanced imaging techniques as they become available, to address grand challenges in the life sciences area. 

The imaging science programme is supported with access to other techniques such as Optical Tweezers and access to the facilities of the ULTRA group. Biological laboratory facilities and expertise in sample preparation are in integral part of the Octopus activity.


Octopus UsersIntegrated FacilitiesIndustry
Techniques availableLife Sciences SupportAccess for industry
Apply for timeOxford Protein Production Facility
Current scheduleEquipment available at the RCaH


Contact: Martin-Fernandez, Marisa (STFC,RAL,CLF)