Engineered by science

Why does Iridia exist? To make your life easier!​

The sole purpose of the Iridia is to make laser ablation ICP-MS applications faster to run and easier to set up, together with powerful software that vastly simplifies the optimization of both laser and ICP-MS, and offers all the required data reduction tools to guarantee consistently high quality analytical data. 

Teledyne CETAC Technologies employs an ‘engineered by science’ approach with all hardware and software products. This means everything we do is designed with the end user in mind, fully field tested in the real world and, where possible, proven through peer reviewed and published data. 

We believe this science led approach gives users a full confidence that they are getting a class leading product that works, and one that will support and enhance their field of research or analyses by being a tool that can be relied on rather than a tool to be tested and developed.

What is Iridia?

Iridia is a purpose-built laser ablation system designed for ultimate flexibility and capable of addressing an increasing range of demanding applications. Coupled to HDIP software, the Iridia system can take your overnight projects and complete them in minutes. 

Iridia is the result of several years of painstaking scientific collaborations with the intent of creating a system that does the following:

  • Allows a user to generate the highest quality data as quickly and easily as possible
  • Provides maximum analytical flexibility without the need for major configuration changes, with all key specifications proven through independent peer reviewed publications. 
  • Ensure that the system works well and is proven to do so by world renowned independent academics. 


​The beam path has been completely redesigned to provide the following features be while still allowing full alignment of the components without compromising the system’s Class 1 integrity:

  • Fully sealed
  • Interlocked
  • Purged
  • Pressurized ​​

The latest mirror design allows off-center alignment of the laser beam increasing the lifetime of critical optics by 5 times. 

Cobalt-Cell.pngThe integrated, fully enclosed, and vented gas cabinet holds all the necessary excimer premix and helium gas bottles whilst the patented ExiCheck gas exchanger module automatically exchanges the ArF gas on a pre-set interval with no user interaction required.

With its small footprint and lower weight, the system is easy to maneuver between different labs and instrum​ents with minimal effort.

The Cobalt cell is engineered into the system in such a way that a minimal distance can be achieved between the sample chamber and the ICP MS with reversible gas flows to maximize the flexibility. The modular sample drawers were specifically designed to be adaptable for many sample sizes and types without adversely affecting the data quality.​

Severa​l areas of the engineering are worth further explanation:

eQC In-Situ Energy Detector (patented) 

The eQC is an energy meter permanently present in the sample chamber. It is there to allow a user to check the laser energy being delivered ​to the sample immediately before and after analytical runs and to confirm that the laser was working as expected. This can be particularly useful where long unattended runs are being undertaken as it gives the analyst the confidence that everything worked as required with consistent ablation parameters being delivered throughout.​​

ExiChec​​k Gas Exchange Accessory (patented)​

ExiCheck.jpgThe ExiCheck system allows the user to set the laser system aside, completely powered down, and at a time interval defined by the user the unit will switch on just the components required to effect a fresh gas refill of the cavity, after which it is once again fully powered down. All of this is completely automated. Importantly, this does not rely on software or having a computer powered up 100% of the time as it is firmware controlled. 

A key challenge with Excimer lasers is maintaining the gas quality in the laser cavity itself. The ArF gas used by a 193nm laser has the unusual property of degrading over time, and a fresh gas refill is recommended at least every month. If the laser is unused for extended periods, the gas will go stale and degrade performance of the system as components inside the laser head become contaminated. A contaminated cavity leads to an increase in gas usage as more frequent fills are needed to maintain a stable output. 

With the ExiCheck system, all of these problems are eliminated. ExiCheck keeps the gas fresh and the system in optimum condition for future use and actually reduces the annual gas consumption of the whole system. It just requires that the system is left plugged into a power supply.​

Dynamic-Z (​patent pending) 

Given the speed a modern sample chamber can transport aerosol from the point of ablation into the plasma in the ICP-MS it is increasingly important to understand and optimize the aerosol transport dynamics in the sample chamber itself. 

A key part of the academic studies that underpin the Cobalt design focused on exactly that, and it was found that the analytical performance of the whole system could be compromised unless the efficiency with which the aerosol was removed from the ablation site was correctly set up. Gas flows play an important part in this, but so too does the distance between the sample surface and the extract point in either the cup or tube component in the cell (depending on configuration).

Extensive testing has shown that this cannot be a fixed distance, and that it varies depending on the application and optimization parameters needed for the particular analysis. For example, the optimum distance could be determined by rep rate, spot size, matrix hardness, and laser energy as well as the type of sample being ablated. Research1 has shown that a distance of between 60µm and 200µm is needed for the tube cell configuration (can be greater than 200µm for the ‘Long Pulse’ module) and that the distance needs to be consistent and carefully maintained throughout the run to +/- 10µm of the set point. It is important to realize that the distance needs to be optimized independently of the laser focus and will be application specific. In previous designs the sample to extraction point distance was usually fixed at install, or directly connected to the laser focusing optics, but recent scientific research1 has shown that these approaches are not analytically robust enough for these more efficient sample chamber designs.

The laser is focused on the sample surface and then the distance to the extraction point (the hole in the tube cell or at the base of the cup) needs to be optimized independently. Once set, this can then be coupled to the focus optics to track a surface topography, or fixed independent of the focus point where depth profiling applications are being undertaken. In that case, the laser focus would drive down into the sample but the distance between sample surface and extraction point would remain fixed, and therefore optimized for most efficient sample transport. Flexibility is key to ensure high quality analytical data is obtained. An additional benefit is the ability to hold the laser focus, drive the cup/tube assembly up away from the surface, and then navigate freely around the sample chamber without fear of impacting the sample surface and either damaging the sample or the hardware but that really is of secondary importance to the analytical consequences.

It is important to recognize that the ‘Dynamic Z’ function is an additional ‘Z’ drive that operates entirely independently of the existing ‘Z’ drive that manages the laser focus.

​Analytical P​erformance

Baseline-separation.jpgIridia has high stability laser energy output coupled with highly developed sample chamber flow dynamics enabling high quality analytical performance that can make full use of the rapidly advancing IC​​P-MS technology. 

The patented Cobalt sample chamber offers unrivaled flexibility from single millisecond to over second signal generation. With a 300 Hz, 500 and 1 kHz option​, there are configurations for all needs. Compared to all previous 2‑volume samples chambers, the Cobalt chamber can achieve greater analytical performance with far lower gas usage. Typical He usage is around 4 to 5 times lower than previous systems, for example, with a total He consumption of less than 1 LPM.

The analytical performance has been developed and fine-tuned through multiple iterations in close collaboration with Prof. Vanhaecke’s group at University of Ghent. The result is a robust and highly capable sample chamber with proven analytical characteristic1


Baseline separation of single pulse at laser repetition rates up to 1 kHz are possible, with peak-to-peak reproducibility of <5% RSD. The patented design includes a software controlled, fully automated Z-prime function that maintains the ideal distance between the sample surface and the extraction point in the sample chamber. This critical feature guarantees high precision, high accuracy analytical data across the entire sample chamber, irrespective of surface variations in the sample material.​

Powe​​rful, Easy To Use Software

The Chromium 3.0 operating ​​software has been completely re-engineered to provide a streamlined user experience. When coupled to HDIP, the Iridia becomes an incredibly powerful analytical package, offering unrivaled analytical flexibility with increasingly automated data reduction and interrogation modules. ​
​HDIP Mass Spectrometry Data Analysis ​​software suite comes preinstalled on all Iridia systems, with a full license valid for 6 months. An extended community of users is available online, as well discussion forums, training modules, and up-to-date documentation.HDIP_Imaging.png

The result of more tha​​n five years of collaborative academic research​​

  • ​Patented Cobalt Cell for proven <1ms to >1s flexible analytical performance1
  • ​Quick and easy optimization 
  • Geo and Bio configuration – or both!
  • Dual attenuators available for low energy stability (1 – 0.01 Jcm2) for proven selective ablation of biological samples2
  • Eye-safe Class 1 laser alignment
  • MLase laser with enhanced operational lifetime characteristics to minimize operating costs
  • Fully sealed interlocked optical path with pressurized purge and multi-position mirrors for 5× mirror lifetime 
  • Software controlled, dual polarizers with geo configuration enabling superior birefringence measurements
  • 300 Hz, 500 Hz, and 1 kHz laser options 
  • Smallest footprint (600mm W, 888mm D, 1413mm H), eQC, ExiCheck
  • Proprietary expanded objective array 
  • Pre-installed demo version of HDIP software 
  • Pulse-to-pulse highly reproducible analytical data 
  • High precision analytical data irrespective of single pulse response (SPR) speed
  • Baseline separation achieved at 500 Hz 
  • HDIP significantly advances the performance capabilities currently provided by software plugins
  • HDIP generates quality data using peer-reviewed algorithms
  • HDIP allows quick and efficient modelling of analytical parameters for highest quality data
  • HDIP peak detection module for automated optimization ​



[1] Van Malderen, S. J. M., Van Acker, T., & Vanhaecke, F. (2020). Sub-micrometer Nanosecond LA-ICP-MS Imaging at Pixel Acquisition Rates above 250 Hz via a Low-Dispersion Setup. Analytical Chemistry, 92(8), 5756–5764.

[2] Van Acker, T., Van Malderen, S. J. M., Colina-Vegas, L., Ramachandran, R. K., & Vanhaecke, F. (2019). Selective ablation of biological tissue and single cells on a glass substrate by controlling the laser energy density of nanosecond 193 nm laser radiation. Journal of Analytical Atomic Spectrometry, 34(10), 1957–1964.​

 Literature References

Publications showing our products in use. Click column headers to filter and sort. Links to third party sites.
Sub-µm nanosecond LA-ICP-MS imaging at pixel acquisition rates above 250 Hz via a low-dispersion setup
Van Malderen et al.
Analytical Chemistry2020Fundamentals
Methods to visualize elements in plants
Kopittke et al.
Plant Physiology2020Biological
Interactions of cisplatin and daunorubicin at the chromatic level
Niaki et al.
Scientific Reports2020Biological
Arraying of single cells for quantitative high throughput laser ablation ICP-TOF-MS
Löhr et al.
Analytical Chemistry2019Biological
Laser Ablation-Inductively Coupled Plasma Time-of-Flight Mass Spectrometry Imaging of Trace Elements at the Single-Cell Level for Clinical Practice
Theiner et al.
Analytical Chemistry2019Biological
Cellular and sub-cellular Cu isotope fractionation in the human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cell line: proliferating versus neuron-like cells
Costas-Rodriguez et al.
Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry2019Biological
Laser ablation-tandem ICP-mass spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS/MS) imaging of iron oxide nanoparticles in Ca-rich gelatin microspheres
Van Acker et al.
Journal of Analytical Atomic Spectrometry2019Biological
High-resolution imaging and single-cell analysis via laser ablation-inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry for the determination of membranous receptor expression levels in breast cancer cell lines using receptor-specific hybrid tracers
Van Acker et al.
Analytica Chimica Acta2019Biological; Single Cell
Selective ablation of biological tissue and single cells on a glass substrate by controlling the laser energy density of nanosecond 193 nm laser radiation
Van Acker et al.
Journal of Analytical Atomic Spectrometry2019Biological
Three-dimensional reconstruction of the distribution of elemental tags in single cells using laser ablation ICP-mass spectrometry via registration approaches
Van Malderen et al.
Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry2019Biological



​​Video Presentation: 1kHz Laser Ablation ​(January 2022)​

 Contact Us

Contact us using an​y of the methods below for more information on this or other Teledyne CETAC products.

Toll Free: 1-800-369-2822

International: +1 402-733-2829​​​