Core Facilities

Electron Microscopy Core Facility Electron Microscopy


Paul Shao, Ph.D.
Manager, Electron Microscopy Facility

Electron Microscopy Core Facility
Department of Molecular Biology
113G Moffett Laboratory
Washington Road
Princeton, NJ 08544
(609) 258-3851



User-operated (staff-operated) Per-hour Fee [internal/Princeton]

User-operated (staff-operated) Per-hour Fee [external]

Zeiss 912 (TEM)

54 (162)

162 (486)

Leica UC6 (ultramicrotome [conventional])

20 (60)

60 (180)

Reichert FC4D (ultramicrotome[cryo])

25 (75)

75 (225)

Leica EMPACT (high pressure freezer)

20 (60)

60 (180)

Specimen Preparation (including consumables)

Free (40)

40 (120)

Training and support (General Sample Prep)

Free/Embedded in above machine usage fees

Free/Embedded in above machine usage fees

Training and support (Ultramicrotomy)

Free/Embedded in above machine usage fees

Free/Embedded in above machine usage fees

Training and support (TEM/Imaging)

Free/Embedded in above machine usage fees

Free/Embedded in above machine usage fees

User Training

Sample preparation of conventional and immuno-TEM

Operation of EM equipment

EM Equipment

TEM (Zeiss Leo 912)

Carl Zeiss LEO OMEGA 912 EF-TEM

LEO Omega 912 energy filtered transmission electron microscope (EF-TEM) for ultrastructural study. This microscope can achieve 80 x to 500,000 x magnification at 60 to 120kv accelerating voltage. This microscope is equipped with 7.5 mega-pixels of EMCCD (Hamamatsu Orca camera) with imaging software (AMT ver. 602) for digital imaging.


Leica EM PACT High Pressure Freezer

This High Pressure Freezer provides cryo-fixation method with liquid nitrogen to better preserve antigen for immuno-EM. Unlike chemical fixation resulting in sample shrinkage and extraction, high pressure freezing maintains natural structural integrity of cells and tissue sample.

FS (Leica EM AFC)

Leica EM AFS Freezing Substitution

After high pressure freezing, this Freezing Substitution leads to resin embedded samples suitable without ice-crystal damage for both conventional and immuno-EM work at room temperature.

Ultramicrotome (Leica UC6)

Leica EM UC6 Ultramicrotome

As a recent model from Leica, this provides semi-thin and ultra-thin section of resin sample block.

Cryo-Ultamicrotome (Ultracut E & FC4E)

Reichert-Jung Ultracut E Ultramicrotome and FC 4E

This cryo-ultrmicrotome provides cryo-section for immuno-EM from cryo-protected sample block (Tokuyasu technique).

Turbo Evaporator (EMS 950)

EMS 950 Turbo Evaporator

This evaporator allows carbon deposition on a bare grid to be more conductive.

Critical Point Dryer (EMS 850)

EMS 850 Critical Point Dryer

This dryer provides critical point drying, which is an established method of dehydrating biological tissue prior to examination in the Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM).

Sputter (Denton Vacuum Desk II)

Denton Vacuum Desk II Cold Sputter

This sputter allows either gold/palladium or carbon deposition on a variety of different substrate. This process is important for sample to be conductive in Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM).

Glass Knife Maker (RMC)

Glass Knife Maker

This knife maker provides a glass knife for semi-thin and ultra-thin sectioning with ultramicrotome.

Fisher Heratherm Oven

This oven provides thermal polymerization (50-65°C) of a resin embedded sample. A function of countdown-type off timer makes the oven to shut down until it is scheduled.

Fisher ultra-violet (UV) lamp

UV lamp provides polymerization of EM sample embedded with acrylic resin (London Resin White or London Resin gold) at low temperature.

Electron Microscopy (EM) Core Facility

The Electron Microscopy (EM) core facility is a research support facility administered and supported by Princeton University department of Molecular Biology. Our mission is to provide undergraduate/graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, faculty and staff with technical consultation and operational training on EM equipment and sample preparation. We are open to all faculty, staff, and students on the entire Princeton University campus, and also to off-campus investigators and users. 

The facility is located in Moffett Hall, Room 113.

Our primary microscope is a Zeiss 912AB omega-filtered transmission electron microscope (TEM) operating at 100kV. It is a workhorse imaging TEM capable of magnifications ranging from 80X to 500,000X. Sample preparations we support (on cells, tissues, and synthetic soft materials) include: negative stain, immuno-labeling, heavy metal shadowing, conventional resin embedding/sectioning, freeze-substitution embedding/sectioning. Training on the use of the electron microscope and sample preparation is tailored to the user's scientific need.

People who wish to start an EM project and/or access facility equipment should contact facility manager Paul Shao at (609) 258-3851 or by email at


Upcoming Events

Wed, Sep 14, 2016

Tue, Sep 20, 2016

Wed, Sep 28, 2016

Contact Us

Lewis Thomas Laboratory at Princeton University

119 Lewis Thomas Laboratory
Washington Road, Princeton, NJ  08544-1014

Need help? Contact us

Fax: (609) 258-3980