(RIKEN–Hiroshima University Collaboration Research Facility)

State-of-the-art imaging system protected by two layers of curtains

(Top image) The focused ion beam scanning electron microscope (FIB-SEM) is a system which combines focused ion beams for processing or milling the surface of a sample and a scanning electron microscope for observing the surface of a material. Thin, serial, cross-sectional slices are removed from the surface of resin-embedded cell or tissue samples, and then images of each newly revealed layer are captured. The image data are then rendered into 3D using a software program, which then allow scientists to make 3D observations of intracellular structures and their surrounding environment. Operating the instrument is research scientist Takeshi Itabashi and Team Leader Atsuko Iwane (right) of the Laboratory for Cell Field Structure.


FIB-SEM enclosed in plastic curtains
Changes in temperature and humidity when performing microscopy experiments can greatly influence the observational results. To ensure an optimal air-conditioned environment, the microscopy system is contained within a boxed structure that is then surrounded by a (ceiling-to-floor) curtain.


Hallway inside the building
The RIKEN–Hiroshima University Collaboration Research Facility is uniquely designed with three hallways linked together in a triangular shape. The hallway on the right leads to the areas allocated to RIKEN, while the left side leads to the areas for Hiroshima University.