Tech Eyes Online Distributor Interview - Tokyo, Japan

Tech Eyes Online Distributor Interview – Tokyo, Japan

“Edinburgh Instruments is a pioneer in fluorescence measurement; a pioneer in their field” – Mr Katsuhiro Saito, Tokyo Instruments Inc.

At Edinburgh Instruments we pride ourselves on our global presence, which is supported by our large distributor base all over the world. Tokyo Instruments Inc. (TI), our Japanese distributor, recently attended the Photonix Conference in Tokyo where our Mini-tau fluorescence lifetime spectrometer was on display. This attracted the attention of a reporter for Tech Eyes Online, who was keen to find out a little bit more about the equipment and Edinburgh Instruments. Take a look at an interview that took place where Mr Katsuhiro Saito shared more on our Mini-tau as well as other fluorescence spectrometers from our range.

Please tell me more about the fluorescence spectrometer that you are exhibiting:

The Mini-tau is manufactured in the UK by Edinburgh Instruments. Using a fluorescence lifetime spectrometer, a laser (excitation light) is irradiated on a sample, and a speck of fluorescence is then emitted from the sample. It is used to measure the amplitude, wavelength and lifetime of this light. Laser light sources and detectors are attached to the sample chamber, the measuring electronics are inside, and it is controlled using software on a PC that is directly connected, becoming one system. When opening the lid on the upper side of the sample chamber, several kinds of samples can be placed inside and fluorescence spectroscopy is then measured by switching these components. The Mini-tau has a lot of know-how, packed into one small instrument.

What is Fluorescence Lifetime?

Depending on the type and condition of the sample, light at a different wavelength to the irradiated laser is observed from the sample, which is called fluorescence. Fluorescence has some distribution in wavelength, therefore a spectroscopic measurement is performed. Additionally, the fluorescence intensity is not constantly glowing, but shines for an instant and then disappears. This also depends on the sample type and its state. Lifetimes are calculated from the time plot of fluorescence intensity, but this is sample dependent. We can then analyse the electronic structure, kinetics, and the state of the material from the fluorescence spectrum and the fluorescence lifetime curve.

What kind of samples are measured?

Samples being measured can be a solution, powder, thin film and so on. For example, the lifetime of sensor chips varies depending on how the material is made. Solar cell panels also have different energy conversion efficiency depending on the conditions. When examining the fluorescence data by applying a light source, it can be confirmed whether it is operating well or has a poor conversion efficiency.

Are the customers all material scientists?

There are material scientists who use these instruments, but it is also used for fundamental research in chemistry and physics, and even in recent studies of quantum computers. In addition, we are very interested in the creation of biological and medical systems.

Can you tell me more about this product as well as its configuration options?

This specific instrument is a Mini-tau. You are able to choose the wavelength of the laser and can also change the holders to suit the shape of the sample. Additionally, if you wish to have higher sensitivity or a wider spectral range you are able to replace the detector.

Can you talk more about other products from Edinburgh Instruments

Edinburgh Instruments offer 4 different kinds of fluorescence spectrometers; the Mini-tau which is shown here, the FS5 Spectrofluorometer, FLS1000 Photoluminescence Spectrometer, and the LifeSpec II Fluorescence Spectrometer. The optical design of the FS5 has been greatly improved. The noise is lower which increases the sensitivity, and is easy to use. The FLS1000 is even more superior and is a higher sensitivity model. The LifeSpec II, unlike the Mini-tau, is not filter based, but is automatic and has a computer controlled double subtractive monochromator.

Please tell me more about Edinburgh Instruments’ history

Edinburgh Instruments has been in business for over 40 years. It specialises in the manufacturing of spectrometers, focussing mainly on fluorescence lifetime and fluorescence analysis. Our company started working with them three years ago as their distributor in Japan.

Based on what you’ve mentioned, did you choose Edinburgh Instruments because of their high performing instruments?

Yes. That’s right. Edinburgh Instruments is a pioneer in fluorescence measurement; a pioneer in their field. Other companies have based their products largely on what Edinburgh Instruments are doing.

Mini-tau Fluorescence Lifetime Spectrometer

To learn more about our Mini-tau spectrometer, or any of our other fluorescence spectrometers, contact a member of our team at

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