Cytek™ Northern Lights
A new flow cytometry system that shifts the paradigm in what scientists expect to see in performance from an affordable three laser system.
Cytek Northern Lights incorporates the same groundbreaking technologies as its older sister, the Cytek™ Aurora. Like Aurora, its optical design and unmixing algorithm give scientists remarkable flexibility, enabling the use of a wide array of new fluorochrome combinations without reconfiguring the system for each application. The state-of-the-art optics and low-noise electronics provide excellent sensitivity and resolution. Flat-top beam profiles, combined with a uniquely designed fluidics system, translate to outstanding performance at high sample flow rates.
The end result is a system that sits in a sweet spot for scientists that have budgeted for a one to three laser system, but desire the ability to run panels of higher complexity.
SpectroFlo® software offers an intuitive workflow from QC to data analysis with technology-enabling tools that simplify running applications.
The Cytek™ team has reimagined what you should expect from an affordable cytometer and has delivered an instrument that brings the benefits of full spectrum cytometry to more scientists.
Upgradeable from one laser and nine colors to three lasers and 24 colors, there is a Northern Lights configuration to fit your needs.
Sensitivity redefined using state-of-the-art optics and low-noise electronics.
Superb resolution of dim and rare populations, even in high complexity panels and high flow rates.
Easy, Flexible, and Intuitive
One configuration for all assays - no need to change optical filters.
Use any commercially available fluorochrome excited by the onboard lasers.
Intuitive software with familiar workflow.
Low Cost of Ownership
Fewer lasers to run more colors.
Low maintenance lasers, more fluorochrome choice, one configuration, and up to 24 colors per sample equates to greater cost savings and less setup time between experiments.
Northern Lights contains a fixed optical assembly configured with one to three spatially separated laser beams. Laser delays are automatically adjusted during instrument QC.
One laser configuration: 488nm: 50mW
Two laser configuration: 488nm: 50mW, 640nm: 80mW
Three laser configuration: 405nm: 100mW, 488nm: 50mW, 640nm: 80mW
Flat-Top laser beam profile with narrow vertical beam height optimized for small particle detection.
Fused silica cuvette coupled to high NA lens for optimum collection efficiency to optical fibers.
Forward and Side Scatter Detection
FSC: high-performance semiconductor detector with 488nm bandpass filter.
SSC: Two high-performance semiconductor detectors with 405nm and 488nm bandpass filter. Note: 405nm side scatter applies to three laser configurations only.
Proprietary high sensitivity Coarse Wavelength Division Multiplexing (CWDM) semiconductor array per laser enabling more efficient spectrum capture in the 420-830nm range. No filter changes required for any fluorochrome excited by the 405nm, 488nm, and 640nm lasers.
Standard Optical Configuration
Violet detector module (only available in three laser configurations): 16 channels uneven spaced bandwidth from 420nm-830nm.
Blue detector module: 14 channels uneven spaced bandwidth from 500-830nm.
Red detector module: 8 channels uneven spaced bandwidth from 650-830nm.
Sample Flow Rates
Low: 15 µL/min, Medium: 30 µL/min, High: 60 µL/min, Plate high-throughput mode: 100 µL/min
Long clean, SIT flush, Purge filter, Clean flow cell
Manual Sample Input Formats
12x75mm polystyrene and polypropylene tubes
Standard Fluidic Reservoirs
4L fluid container set with level-sensing provided. Compatible with 20L sheath and waste cubitainers.
Volumetric measurement during sample recording enables calculation of counts per µL for any gated population.
Plate Loader Option
96-well microtiter plate capbility
Throughput time 35 minutes at High Throughput mode sampling 7 µL/well
Plate stage temperature: 4-37°C ± 2°C
Plate Loader Carryover
Default mode: 0.3%, Low Carryover mode: 0.1%, High Throughput mode: 1%
FITC: <110 MEFL, PE: <35 MEFL, APC: <15 MEFL, Pacific Blue: <200MEFL
* measurements based on an average from three systems and performed using SPHERO Rainbow Calibration Particle (RCP-30-5A) based on its peak emission channel.
FITC R2 ≥0.995 / PE R2 ≥0.995
Forward and Side Scatter Resolution
Performance is optimized for resolving lymphocytes, monocytes, and granulocytes.
Side Scatter Resolution
Capable of resolving 0.1µm beads from noise.
Data Acquisition Rate
Live unmixing during acquisition
Developed specifically to streamline assay setup, data acquisition, and file export
Automated QC module
Raw and Unmixed FCS 3.1 files
Digital signal processing with automatic window gate adjustment.
22-bit 6.5 log decades.
Threshold using any single parameter or combination of parameters.
Pulse Shape Parameters
Pulse Area and Height for every parameter. Width for scatter parameters and one fluorescence parameter for each laser.
Windows® 10 Pro 64-bit
Intel® Core™ i7 processor, 3.6 GHz
500GB SSD / 1TB SATA
NVIDIA® HD GeForce
32” UHD 4K Monitor
Dimensions (W x D x H)
Without loader: 54 x 52 x 52 cm
With loader: 58.4 x 62 x 52 cm
Instrument weight: 61 kg
Loader weight: 13 kg
29.1 x 9.25 x 34.4 cm
157 x 72 x 132 cm
100-240V, 50/60 Hz, 2A max
500W with all solid-state lasers
20%-85% relative non-condensing
No excessive dust or smoke
No special requirements
For Research Use Only. Not for use in diagnostic or therapeutic procedures.
Cytek™ Northern Lights Product Brochure
Click below to download the complete product brochure for the Northern Lights. It contains everything you need to know about this revolutionary product.Download PDF
Cytek™ Northern Lights Technical Specs
Click below to download the technical specs for the Northern Lights. It contains everything you need to know about this revolutionary product.Download PDF
SpectroFlo® Software Guided Workflows
The new SpectroFlo® software offers an intuitive workflow from QC to data analysis with technology-enabling tools that simplify running any application.
QC and Setup:
Run Daily QC to monitor instrument performance and add reference controls.
Add or remove experiment templates, worksheet templates, fluorochrome information, QC bead information, and more.
Unmix data using controls from different experiments or apply virtual filters to your data.
For administrative controls.
Customize the software appearance. Set default plot sizes, text sizes and fonts, gate colors, print layout, statistics table options, and more.
From the Acquisition menu, you can start a new experiment and get to your data in three simple guided steps.
Step 1: Create Your Experiment
Create your experiment, choose fluorochromes, and add labels, tubes, worksheets, and stopping criteria in this guided workflow.
Get to Know Our Automatic Micro-Sampling System (AMS)
Meet the New AMS
The new AMS offers preset and user adjustable settings that allows the loader to be fine tuned to your experimental requirements. The AMS is specifically designed to streamline experimental workflow and seamlessly integrates into Northern Lights. The AMS also offers ease of use, low carry over, and minimal dead volume.
Quick and easy
Reliable 96 well plate acquisition maximizes productivity.
Easily change between plates and tubes in a matter of seconds.
Three throughput modes
Optimized acquisition speeds, from low carry over to high throughput.
User customizable modes
Fully customizable with a suite of user modes to fit a variety of applications and workflows.
The Power of Full Spectrum Cytometry
Full spectrum cytometry opens a wide range of new possibilities. Northern Lights allows scientists to run complex multicolor experiments with as few as one or two lasers. The unique optical system enables the use of dyes with highly overlapping peak emissions without sacrificing resolution, translating to more flexibility in dye choice. Only one configuration is used for all applications, saving time in experimental setup, and minimizing the chance for experimental error. The following experiments are examples of what is possible with Northern Lights:
9-Color Blue Laser Panel
Peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) were thawed, stained, washed, and analyzed on the Northern Lights (two laser configuraton). In this nine color blue laser excitable dyes panel, monocytes and several CD4 T cell and CD8 T cell subsets were easily identified. Markers and fluorochromes used in this assay are summarized in the table below.
|CD45RA||Alexa Fluor® 488|
|CD3||Alexa Fluor® 532|
|CD8||BD Horizon™ BB700|
24 Colors With Three Lasers... Is it Possible?
The optical design combined with the unmixing capability in SpectroFlo® software allows greater fluorochrome choice, panel flexibility, and easy setup without having to change filters. The three laser configuration provides outstanding multi-parametric data for a wide array of applications. Markers and fluorochromes in a 24-color panel designed for identification of circulating cell subsets in human peripheral blood are summarized in the table below:
|CCR7||Brilliant Violet 421™||CD11c||BD Horizon™ BB515||CD27||APC|
|CD19||Super Bright 436||CD45RA||Alexa Fluor® 488||CD123||Alexa Fluor® 647|
|CD16||eFluor® 450||CD3||Alexa Fluor® 532||CD127||BD Horizon™ APC R700|
|TCR γ/δ||BD Horizon™ BV480||CD25||PE||HLA DR||APC/Fire™ 750|
|CD14||Brilliant Violet 510™||IgD||PE/Dazzle™ 594|
|CD8||Brilliant Violet 570™||CD95||PE-Cy™5|
|CD1c||Brilliant Violet 605™||CD11b||PerCP-Cy™5.5|
|PD-1||Brilliant Violet 650™||CD38||PerCP-eFluor® 710|
|CD56||Brilliant Violet 711™||CD57||PE-Cy™7|
|CD4||Brilliant Violet 750™|
|CD28||Brilliant Violet 785™|
The 24-Color Panel Includes Many Highly Overlapping Dyes:
Small Particle Detection
With its onboard 100mW 405nm laser and highly sensitive violet side scatter detector, particles nearing 100nm in size can be analyzed. Northern Lights opens the door to a wide variety of small particle applications.
Resolution of ApogeeMix (Apogee Flow Systems), mixture of beads ranging from 1300nm to 110nm, when acquired on Northern Lights. The smallest particles can be easily identified above background.
Data analyzed using FCS Express 6 by De Novo™ Software.
For those challenging applications involving highly autofluorescent particles, let the software's autofluorescence extraction ability bring new levels of resolution. Spectral cytometry has the advantage of measuring the autofluorescence spectrum of your unstained specimen and allows to extract its contribution from other fluorescent parameters. This results in better resolution of markers conjugated to dyes that heavily overlap with the cells' autofluorescence signal.
Example: PrimeFlow™ RNA Assay
Human U937 cells were subjected to the PrimeFlow™ RNA Assay, underwent a series of hybridization steps to label mRNA for HMBS, a low expressed gene (~10 copies/cell), with Alexa Fluor® 488. The sample was run on Northern Lights and analyzed using SpectroFlo® software with two different strategies, one with autofluorescence extraction and one without.
Fluorescent Proteins and Challenging Dye Combinations
The detection of some fluorescent protein or fluorochrome combinations by conventional flow cytometry presents a challenge due to high amounts of spectral overlap (Figures 1, 4). Northern Lights addresses this challenge by using differences in full emission spectra signatures across all lasers to clearly resolve these combinations, even if the populations are co-expressed (Figures 2, 3, 5 and 6).