Union Biometrica Cytometry Products

COPAS FP, VISION, or BioSorter – Choosing The Right Platform & Model

So which platform is best for your research? First it depends on the kinds of samples you want to analyze and sort because that will determine which flow cells for COPAS (or FOCAs for BioSorter) are best suited for your work.

    Flow Cell (COPAS & VISION) or FOCA (BioSorter)
Sample Type Size/Stage of Object 250 µm 500 µm 1000 µm 2000 µm
Small Model Organisms          
   C. elegans embryo to adult R O*    
   Daphnia         R
   D. melanogaster embryo to 1st instar   R    
  1st and 2nd instar     R  
  3rd instar       R
   Zebrafish egg-zygote-embryo       R
   hatchling/larval (2-7 dpf)       O
   Zooplankton     R*** R***  
Insect Disease Vectors and Pests          
   Mosquitos embryos & early larvae   R O  
   Potato and soybean
   cyst nematodes
   Fruitflies embryos & early larvae   R R  
   Western corn


   Fall armyworm       R R
   Arabidopsis &
seeds, early seedlings     R  
   Other plant
   sample types
pollen R O    
   protoplasts R O    
   calli   R


   Aspergillus, fungi
   and hyphae
Large Cells & Cell Clusters          
   Adipocytes   R R    
   Cardiomyocytes &
    R O  
   Embryoid Bodies   O R O  
   Duct Cells
   (kidney, breast,
  R O    
   Hepatocytes   R O    
   Organoids       R  
   Pancreatic Islets     O R  
   Stem Cells   R      
   Tumor spheroids     R R  
   Hydrogel particles
   and microcarriers
  5-150 20-300 40-750 100-1500
R = Recommended O = Optional        
* Size resolution not as good as 250 micron, Fluorescence is OK, Speed reduced by 1/2.
** Bead sizes are "swollen" sizes in water (not dry).
*** Depends on the kind/size of zooplankton that is being studied.

Shown above are some examples of samples that have been sorted with COPAS. Our applications scientists have years of hands-on experience running thousands of samples. For a discussion regarding your specific application requirements we invite you to contact our applications staff by email or telephone.

Other considerations:

  • Do you need an optimized, dedicated instrument in your individual laboratory to make certain it is “always ready” and has not been exposed to any other types of samples or reagents?
  • Or does funding dictate that a shared instrument is the practical choice?
  • The degree of automation and choice of options are other factors to consider.

Additional factors are highlighted below:

Instrument Selection Guide
  COPAS™ FP Platform BioSorter® Platform COPAS VISION™ Platform
Target Market Designed for individual lab or group of labs working with similar size objects. Optimized for shared instrument locations such as Departmental or Core labs Designed for labs where on-board imaging of samples would be helpful.
Imaging no no Yes – Brightfield image capture as objects pass through the flow cell.
Flow cell size / Fluidics and Optics
Core Assemblies
Choose from 4 dedicated instruments (flow cell sizes)
• FP-250 (250 μm)
• FP-500 (500 μm)
• FP-1000 (1000 μm)
• FP-2000 (2000 μm)
(note: These 4 sizes were formerly known as BIOSORT, SELECT, PLUS and XL models
Interchangeable 250, 500,
1000 and 2000 micron Fluidics and Optics Core Assemblies (FOCA) available
Choose from 3 dedicated instruments:
Recommended object size range 20 – 1500 microns across
4 instruments
10 – 1500 microns using one instrument with 4 swappable FOCA (Fluidics and Optics Core Assemblies) 10 – 750 microns across 3 instruments
Stage for automated dispensing X-Y stage accommodates multiwell plates and bulk receptacles X-Y-Z stage also accommodates sample tubes and tall multiwell plates X-Y stage accommodates multiwell plates and bulk receptacles
Ability to dispense into 384 well plates FP-250 only Possible with 250, 500 & 1000 micron FOCA (sample dependent) yes
Automated Cleaning Cycle no yes yes
Automated sample injection from multiwell plates yes – LP Sampler™ yes – LP Sampler™ yes – LP Sampler™
Max # of excitation lasers 3 4 4
# of fluorescence detection channels 3 3 4 or 8
Object size measurement (TOF) yes yes yes
Extinction detector (EXT) yes yes yes
Side-scatter (SS) yes yes yes
Forward Scatter (FS) no no yes
Instrument control, data acquisition and analysis software FlowPilot Software FlowPilot Software FlowPilot Software
Profiling Yes with FlowPilot-Pro™ option Yes with FlowPilot-Pro™ option Yes with FlowPilot-Pro™ standard
Sorting and dispensing based on operator selectable parameters up to 21 parameters with FlowPilot-Pro option up to 21 parameters with FlowPilot-Pro option up to 61 parameters with FlowPilot-Pro (8 PMT configuration)