The Cryo-Electron Microscopy Facility in MIT.nano enables automated electron imaging of cryogenically preserved specimens. Cryo-EM is primarily used to visualize the three-dimensional morphology of cellular components and structural details of macromolecules, organic nanoparticles, and other thin materials that are hydrated or sensitive to beam damage. Instrumentation in the facility is open to researchers from MIT, external academic institutions, and commercial companies, and facility staff provides training in sample preparation, microscope operation, and image acquisition. Coupled with other emerging imaging and characterization tools, the Cryo-EM Facility provides synergy across many research areas within MIT.nano and beyond.
The facility was established in 2018 with support from The Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation, an Anonymous donor, as well as institutional support from the Vice President for Research, School of Science, and Departments of Biology, Material Science, and Chemistry. The facility includes two cryoTEMs, a cryoFIB-SEM, two different cryoplungers, and a laboratory space for cryo-specimen preparation.