The Most Reliable Microscopy System on ISS

The BioServe Microscopy Platform (BSMP) is an integrated suite of hardware allowing astronauts to capture digital, high-definition microscopy images and videos of our experiments. Once captured, the images and video can be downlinked to Earth for review by the science team allowing near-real-time feedback of the experiment. The BSMP was developed in a modular fashion allowing for new hardware to be swapped in as technology improves. The BioServe Microscope was originally launched in 2016 on SpX-9 with the SABL Camera following in 2018 on OA-9E.

BSMP Components

  • BioServe Microscope (Nikon Eclipse TS100): A professional inverted microscope allowing for brightfield and phase-contrast microscopy, specially modified for usage on ISS. Several objective lenses are already on ISS and ready for use, additional objectives and other add-ons can be flown on a per-experiment basis.
  • SABL Camera (Allied Vision GX1910C): An industrial machine vision camera capable of full high-definition imaging (1920x1080), 60 FPS raw video, and 36-bit color depth. The SABL Camera attaches to the BioServe Microscope via a C-mount adapter. As needed, other camera models may be used to fulfill experiment-specific imaging requirements (higher resolution, FPS, or IR-capability).
  • SABL: BioServe's smart incubator provides the crew's user interface for the camera allowing them to view the camera's output, capture images, and record video. Images from the camera are received in real-time at our Payload Operations and Command Center (POCC) allowing BioServe and the science team to assess the image quality and instruct the crew as necessary to achieve the best quality images and videos. Images can be streamed from our POCC to remote teams located across the world in real-time.

BSMP Experiment Examples

Below is a selection of some of the experiments that we have supported with the BioServe Microscope.