FlowCam® - Flow Imaging Microscopy Blog

FlowCam for the Characterization of Abrasive Compounds

Superabrasives, such as micronized diamonds and cubic boron nitride (CBN), are used extensively in applications for cutting, grinding, and drilling hard materials. The effectiveness of a particular superabrasive material in a given application is largely determined by both particle size and particle shape. 

Above images: Left, mixed diamond powder, particle property shown is Diameter ESD.
Right, high circularity diamond powder particles, filtered by circularity.

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Topics: Industrial Applications, Abrasives

Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua, and Siuslaw Indians Integrate FlowCam into Environmental Stewardship Programs

The Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua, and Siuslaw Indians (CTCLUSI) recently received long-awaited funding to purchase a FlowCam Cyano instrument, after first learning about FlowCam at an east coast workshop a few years ago. CTCLUSI makes up three tribes (4 bands) who all reside in close proximity to one another along the Coos River Tributaries in Oregon. According to the CTCLUSI website:

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Topics: Marine Research, Freshwater Research, Invasive Species, Harmful Algal Blooms, Municipal Water (Drinking/Wastewater), User Spotlight, Aquatic Research

Community Groups Take HAB Monitoring Into Their Own Hands, Recognize Need for Formal Strategic Guidelines

Harmful algal blooms can have a detrimental effect on the environment and on human and animal health. As a result of climate change, water utilities are experiencing these events with increasing frequency. Historically, many water monitoring agencies have not had a plan in place to proactively monitor for cyanobacteria, but rather found themselves reacting to the effects of a bloom after the fact.

Last month, the US EPA released a report that addresses concerns within the agency about the lack of a cohesive, agency-wide plan to monitor freshwater bodies for harmful algal blooms (HABs):

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Topics: Freshwater Research, Harmful Algal Blooms, Municipal Water (Drinking/Wastewater), User Spotlight, Aquatic Research

Comparing FlowCam Results with Light Obscuration: A Study by Japan's National Institute of Health Sciences

In their recent publication, Quantitative Evaluation of Insoluble Particulate Matters in Therapeutic Protein Injections Using Light Obscuration and Flow Imaging Methods, Shibata et. al. compare the ability of Light Obscuration and Flow Imaging to detect and accurately characterize subvisible particles in injectable drugs.

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Topics: Protein Therapeutics, FlowCam Technology, User Spotlight, Biopharmaceutical Research

Austin Water Uses FlowCam to Detect Harmful Algal Blooms

Austin Water, the City of Austin, Texas' water utility, recently purchased a FlowCam Cyano instrument. Austin Water first learned about the advantages of flow imaging microscopy from employee Misty Klein (pictured here).

When Misty moved to the City of Austin, she understood that image analysis with FlowCam would be essential to Austin Water's strategy to prevent harmful algal blooms. She recommended FlowCam Cyano to her colleagues and received funding to purchase an instrument in 2021.

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FlowCam at the Water Professionals Conference in Chattanooga, Tennessee

In August, our FlowCam team attended our first in-person drinking water conference since the onset of the pandemic: the Kentucky/Tennessee Water Professionals Conference in Chattanooga, Tennessee. We met drinking water and wastewater professionals from around the region, ranging from small utilities to state agencies.

Pictured right: Savannah Judge presenting on the water quality monitoring program developed by the City of Wichita Falls in Texas 

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Topics: News and Events, Municipal Water (Drinking/Wastewater)

FlowCam with Light Obscuration is Now Available

While analysis with light obscuration is standard, the FDA has long made clear that size data alone, collected with light obscuration, is not adequate to ensure safe and effective drugs. Orthogonal methods such as flow imaging microscopy are necessary to provide validation.

With the FlowCam LO, the first and only light obscuration (LO) instrument with imaging capabilities is now available. This easy-to-use instrument delivers a powerful, all-in-one solution to meet compliance standards while allowing verification with high-resolution images.

Explore our new technology in the video below.

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Topics: News and Events, FlowCam Technology, Biopharmaceutical Research

New FlowCam Technical Notes: Using Preservatives with Phytoplankton Samples

Aquatic scientists often need to store natural samples for a period of time before processing them using FlowCam. There are multiple preservatives available for this purpose. Glutaraldehyde is a
popular choice of preservative because it will preserve pigment autofluorescence, and therefore allows the use of FlowCam's "Trigger Mode" to automatically distinguish cyanobacteria from other algae, and reduce images of detritus and other non fluorescing particles. Another preservative often used is Lugol's solution, which does not preserve fluorescence, but is less toxic and requires less stringent storage conditions.

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Topics: Algae Technology, Marine Research, Freshwater Research, Harmful Algal Blooms, FlowCam Technology, Municipal Water (Drinking/Wastewater), Aquatic Research

Yokogawa Fluid Imaging Technologies Named One of 2021 Best Places to Work in Maine

Yokogawa Fluid Imaging Technologies was recently named to the list 2021 Best Places to Work in Maine. The statewide survey and awards program are designed to identify, recognize, and honor the best places of employment in Maine, benefiting the state's economy, its workforce, and businesses.

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Topics: News and Events

FlowCam Used to Study Algae Cultures: Training New Users on Gran Canaria

This week FlowCam Applications Scientist, Kay Johnson, visited the Canary Islands to train a new team of FlowCam users at ITC (Instituto Tecnólogico de Canarias). ITC in Pozo Izquierdo is using a FlowCam 8400 with 488nm laser to monitor marine phytoplankton. The team was originally trained by Nicole Gill when they first purchased the FlowCam in 2019, but this year a new group of scientists from Italy and Serbia have joined their team. 

Pictured here (left to right): Kay Johnson, Flavio Guidi, Tonia Principe, Marianna Venuleo, Maca Golezalaz, Zivan Gojkovic 

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Topics: Industrial Applications, Algae Technology, Marine Research, User Spotlight, Aquaculture, Aquatic Research