Agilent MLC400 Monolithic Laser Combiner


A fully integrated laser combiner: permanently aligned and turn-key, ideal for use with Nikon’s Ti-E PFS inverted research microscope or field-scanning confocal systems.

The Agilent MLC400 monolithic laser combiner from Agilent Technologies is designed for fluorescence and confocal microscopy research applications. It offers a reliable light source at multiple wavelengths, with minimal downtime for maintenance and alignment because the system leaves the factory aligned, and it stays that way. The result is a laser-based illumination system for cell biology that is stable, reliable and easy-to-use.

System Highlights

  • Monolithic optical assembly
  • Permanent factory alignment
  • Compact size
  • Power guaranteed at fiber tip
  • Angled or flat-tipped fibers available
  • Ultra-quiet with low heat generation


Key Features  |  Specifications

LUNa Laser UnitsLUNa_Front

The LUNa laser unit represents the
next generation of affordably-priced
laser combiners for use with TIRF,
photoactivation, confocal (A1 and C2),
or other laser applications.

LUNa utilizes complex monolithic optic (CMO) beamsplitters to insure lifetime alignment and stability for laser systems. There is no alignment needed because the system
components cannot move. CMOs eliminate the requirement for multiple mechanical mounts (e.g., posts and mirrors) and minimize the number of exposed and required optical faces. As well, the fused arrangement minimizes the effects of thermal effects (expansion and contraction of components due to heat) that would normally result in lower laser power output.

The LUN unit is a small standalone launch with internal power supplies. A standard power cord powers the entire unit, so no additional box is required for power supplies.
The unit is extremely lightweight and easy to move. The front of the LUN features individual power buttons for each laser line, so users can turn only the line(s) they need to use. A master power switch with key is also included. This laser unit meets FDA CDRH certification for a class B laser device for Nikon microscopes systems including: C2, A1, TIRF, and PAU systems.

System Options

The LUN laser launch can be assembled in one of the following two configurations:

  • LUN-4 4 Laser Unit: 405nm, 488nm, 561nm, and 640nm
  • LUN-3 3 Laser Unit: 405nm, 488nm, and 561nm

Laser output power is rated at 15mW (minimum) per line at fiber output. The optical fiber is an angled type FC connected fiber compatible with all Nikon TIRF,
PAU, and confocal instruments. The laser unit footprint is very small, and is designed to be stackable on an A1 confocal system rack or to fit on a small shelf or lab bench (its size is nearly the same as the A1
DU4 detector unit).

System Configurations


The base LUN unit is coupled with a control box on the rear panel of the unit. There are two panel configurations: confocal and TIRF/PAU. Once a panel configuration is
inserted (see red outline in the photo), and the proper connection cables are connected, the LUN unit can be run with TIRF, PAU, or Confocal (A1 or C2) via NIS-Elements

System Specifications

Wavelengths: 405nm, 488nm, 561nm, 640nm laser diodes
Laser power:  15mW per line at output
Laser Safety:  Interlock and mechanical shutter
Optical fiber length: 3 meter (single fiber)
Wavelength modulation: AOTF (1.5usec rise time)
Electronic Interface: One of the following connections can be made:
– Connection to TIRF/PAU controller
– Connection to Confocal controller
– NIDAQ connection kit
Dimensions: 593.5mm x 360mm x 174mm
Operating Temperature: 23° C +/- 5°
Laser Safety Standards:CE, FDA CDRH Class B laser device

Software Control

The LUN system is compatible with NIS-Elements version 4.20 b967 and can be
controlled by various methods:


These controllers communicate via SDK which is included in the NIS-Elements 4.20 installer (please see section “Devices:Nikon”)Elements_Manage_DevicesOnce installed, users can access the LUN pad to select lasers and power settings. There are customizable GUI settings, and a laser lifetime meter display accessible from Manage Devices. LUN TIRF/PAU control is compatible with triggered acquisition when connected with the appropriate cables.LUN_Control


Controllers for A1 and C2

A different controller box allows the LUN to be used with A1 and C2 confocal systems. In this configuration, the A1 or C2 controller communicates directly with the LUN, and NIS-Elements confocal GUIs display the LUN laser wavelengths and powers.

NOTE: The LUN is fully compatible with confocal modes such a line channel series

Control via NIDAQ

An LUN laser unit without any control box installed can be controlled via NIDAQ card with NIS-Elements and the appropriate drivers for triggered acquisition or general usage. A NIDAQ to LUN connector cable is required for this. This is compatible with TIRF, PAU, or other laser application only. NIDAQ control is not compatible with A1 or C2.

NOTE: When controlled via NIDAQ, laser lifetime GUI is not available.

Limitations and Considerations

The LUN can only have one control box installed inside of it. Only 1 laser unit can be connected to NIS-Elements at a time (e.g., 2 LUN: one withTIRF control box, and one with C2 control box cannot be connected to NIS-Elements at the same time). However, LUN with control box + LUN with NIDAQ control can be connected simultaneously [example: 2 LUNs, one for C2, one for TIRF]. There are no dual fiber or higher output power or laser wavelength choices for LUN. LUN 488nm laser line cannot be used with Spectral Detectors at the 2.5nm grating selection on A1 or C2 confocal systems.