The ability to precisely deliver picolitre volumes has always been a vital part of Biological research, until now this has required a significant investment of up to £4,500 into an established brand.
The Openspritzer (developed, described and published by Forman et al., 2017) serves as an alternative open source micro-ejection/puffer system with similar performance and reliability that you would expect from leading brands, but at a fraction of the cost. NeuroGig has done some modifications to the design as seen in the mock-up image above.
As with the more familiar models on the market, the Openspritzer is a self-contained system that has been designed to be intuitive, with simple functionality. Featuring a built-in ejection control system which is easily adjusted using a rotary switch you have complete control of the ejection duration; you also have the option of controlling the duration via a remotely generated TTL pulse. Ejection pressure is adjusted via the built-in regulator along with an accurate monitoring gauge. The Openspritzer is also supplied with a foot switch for added ease of operation.
NeuroGig's Open-Hardware Support now offers the Openspritzer, to order as a complete unit (component kit, plus assembly and testing). We can further leave the purchasing of the components to you, and have it delivered to our workshop to handle assembly, testing and installation/support.
NeuroGig offers you various options to fit your budget and expertise.
You can opt to purchase the NeuroGig Openspritzer Kit only, where you handle the assembly. Additionally, you buy the Kit and let us handle the assembly and testing with optional installation. And yes, we do provide a warranty on our workmanship!
Alternatively, with time constraints, we can provide you with the complete product, fully assembled, tested and a one year warranty for added peace of mind.
1) A lateral offset between normalised peak intensities, where e.g. the Picospritzer can deliver smaller doses for a given puff duration
*this difference could also be due to small differences in pressure - whilst both instruments were set to 1.4 bar, there could be internal pneumatic differences in the complete systems
2) Variability of the dosage on repeated puffs. The Openspritzer sometimes delivers slightly higher doses at the same settings as the Picospritzer, but this could also be an artefact
*Openspritzer puffs were set at one second delays in between pulses whilst Picospritzer pulses were set and triggered manually
3) Absence of intermediate pressure to prevent back filling in the off state*this function could easily be added with another regulator at port 3 of the solenoid valve
4) Vacuum holding capacity to hold cells in place
*this could easily be accomplished with another Openspritzer in tandem
5) Complete access to the source code for the control of the Openspritzer
*this provides users with an increased range of parameters for controlling timing and puff duration
Read more in Forman et al., 2017
Valve Type -
114mA Fast switching Solenoid
Power supply -
24V DC supply for solenoid valve
1mA/5V Internally generated pulses from Arduino Nano microcontroller
Externally delivered TTL pulses via BNC connector
Foot switch -
Air regulator -
TTL trains -
Yes, at 10Hz TTL train with altered line pressure generated action potentials, but not at 2 or 5Hz
*single puff of glutamate insufficient to activate action potential
Shortest command pulse -
*to reliably generate a detectable puff
*in comparison with 4ms for Picospritzer
Puff pressure -
Line pressure -
Millisecond precision with highly conserved puff volumes
Tested for use -
*Evoking and suppression of action potentials
*In vitro whole cell patch clamp recordings
*Microinjections of infectious agents
*Viral delivery of opsins for optogenetics
*Single molecules to whole bacteria
*Inoculate brain tissue slices with BCG-GFP
*In rodent and human brain slices
The NeuroGig Open-Hardware Support service now has the complete kit for the Openspritzer to order. The kit includes all parts and materials in the correct amounts/sizes, for an efficient and cost-effective instrument assembly.
If you would like to purchase the items directly from multiple suppliers, please let us know and we will send you the BOM.
Please remember that we are always happy to assist with assembly, testing and installation.
For more information on the Open-Hardware Support we offer, please see our short introduction video.
Please get in touch for an itemised quote for the Openspritzer, or buy the complete product in our Store.
Firstly, the PicoSpritzer is much more expensive. The Openspritzer also doesn't currently offer a 2-channel option, but this may be added upon request. As with all open-source hardware projects, the design and and modifications are welcomed, within warranty limits
Definitely. NeuroGig offers assembly, testing and a workmanship warranty. So, if you have already purchased the parts or the NeuroGig Openspritzer Kit, but you struggle to find the time for the build or just don't have the patience...we are ready to help.