The OpenStage Control System is based on the 2014 PLoS ONE paper by Rob Campbell et al., wherein they published their design and evaluated the performance of the “OpenStage” - a stepper-motor driven motorised microscope stage for a two-photon microscope.
Their design includes the complete microscope stage. As indicated in the exploded system configuration above, the NeuroGig modular approach separates the OpenStage into two separate assemblies:
1. The “OpenStage Mechanics” (indicated in the above schematic by green colour-coded parts), including the
2. The “OpenStage Control System” - everything “upstream” from the manual translation stages (indicated in the above schematic by blue colour-coded parts) The OpenStage Control System offered on this product page is an assembly of these parts. It includes
The project described in the publication by Campbell et al., 2014, integrated components from various electronics traders, open source manufacturers or engineering-sites. The group coded the control circuitry to achieve control and accuracy equivalent to or better than many more expensive commercial options. The code and description of the project is available on GitHub.
OpenStage Control Circuitry
The design has been replicated for several other projects since its initial publication. In the meantime, one of the control circuit boards (previously available from SparkFun) has become obsolete. The NeuroGig OpenStage Control System presented here includes custom-built circuitry to replace the obsolete circuit board.
We offer these circuit boards as standalone items or as part of the OpenStage Control System Kit (price on request). You can also order the fully assembled and tested OpenStage Control System in our online Store.
The OpenStage Control System can be integrated into your own stage mechanics assembly, or you may choose to combine it with OpenStage Mechanics components also available from NeuroGig. Always remember you have the option to include assembly, testing and integration for a complete motorised stage solution, delivered to your doorstep.
As part of NeuroGig's Open-Hardware Support we now offer the OpenStage, available to order online in our store as a complete product (tested and under warranty). You also have the option to buy a NeuroGig OpenStage Control System Kit, should you like to try the assembly and installation yourself.
For all the hands-on neuroscientists out there, we can offer the NeuroGig OpenStage Control System Kit (Price on request), with all individual parts needed for the build of your own microscope stage control system. However, seeing as everyone don't necessarily have the time and skills for this, NeuroGig further offers a complete built and tested OpenStage Control System including our one year warranty. We can also throw in the OpenStage Mechanics at a discounted labour rate, should you need the complete OpenStage for your project.
· Reduced cost: The OpenStage Control System is low-cost compared to other commercial solutions, even with full integration with the OpenStage Mechanics, testing and installation by NeuroGig.
· Customisable control options: The open source code integrated into the Control System allows for customisation of the control interface functionality. It is easy to adapt stage function to your requirements*
· Customisable hardware drive options: The research publication evaluates typical specifications with a particular set of stepper motors. It further describes characteristics of alternative motor configurations that may suit different prerequisites. The available spectra on motor variables like speed, torque and resolution can be customiszed by selecting motors with suitable characteristics for your project.
· Customisable software movement characteristics (resolution, speed, offsets): End-user access to well-described code offers you options for changing the movement characteristics of the motors.
· Integration of additional components: The open source access and well-described, interoperable Arduino platform offers variations for integration of other hardware like encoders, a piezo-focus, or to integrate cameras, stitching, motion correction etc.
· Longer lifetime and easier maintenance: The OpenStage offers many possibilities for upgrades - remember, other user-groups are bound to publish code with added functionality on GitHub, for all users to access.
There is also a reduced probability of parts being rendered obsolete without having a good alternative to replace it with. Because of its open source character, all parts are easily exchanged in the lab, without the need to return the whole stage to the manufacturer.
*Please remember we offer customisation services via NeuroGig - Gigs for Neuroscientists
The specifications below have been published and described in the paper by Campbell et al., 2014. Your own results may vary depending on the exact mechanics integrated with the OpenStage Control System, and the assembly methodology. Order the OpenStage Mechanics Kit and assembly from NeuroGig to replicate the findings in this paper closely.
If you were to order the NeuroGig OpenStage Control System including assembly by our technical experts, critical variables will be tested and documented with each individual system prior to shipping.
Sony Dualshock® 3 Wireless Controller
Driving Mechanism: Stepper motors
Range: Depends on the range of the integrated translation stages. Tested at 25mm
Load capacity: Tested on >17kg stage plate weight
PC serial port
Power supply: Output 12Vdc at 3.34A and Output 24Vdc at 4A
Input: Universal Input 110/230V
The following specifications apply only to the OpenStage Control System when used in combination with the OpenStage Mechanics described in Rob Campbell et al., 2014.
Resolution Z-Axis: 40nm
Horizontal Axis: 100nm
Unidirectional positioning repeatability (describes the accuracy with which the stage can return repeatedly to the same position when approached from the same direction):
Bidirectional positioning accuracy: <0.75um errors in Z
(excluding thermal effect)
Sony DualShock® 3 wireless controller
The buttons currently in use for the OpenStage Control System are indicated with the following colours:
Light Green: shoulder buttons (L1 and R1) select the Speed Mode.
Dark Blue: directional buttons, executes fixed-step motions in X, Y or Z (for Z the user holds down the Triangle button whilst pushing up or down with the directional buttons or analog sticks).
Dark Green: analog sticks provide motion in X, Y, (left stick) and Z (right stick).
Light Blue: action buttons (Triangle, Circle, Cross, and Square) allow the user to store and go to four different set point locations.
NeuroGig offers the OpenStage 3-axis motorised microscope stage in two units - OpenStage Control System and OpenStage Mechanics. Both units are available to order as complete units or product kits for self-assembly.
For a completely do-it-yourself approach, please get in touch for a full list of parts and materials required to build the OpenStage.
Please remember that we are always happy to assist with assembly, testing and installation and we provide a warranty on our excellent workmanship.
We offer a NeuroGig OpenStage Kit for easy self-assembly. The kit includes all the parts required to build a single Commutator. Our technical team can also assist you in the assembly and installation.
For design and assembly instructions please visit the GitHub repository.
If you are interested in purchasing both the OpenStage Mechanics and Control System, we do offer this as a complete unit. Please get in touch with your project requirements and check out our OpenStage Mechanics product page for more information on what you will receive in your complete kit.