Lensfree Tomographic Imaging

Tech ID: 29202 / UC Case 2011-373-0


UCLA researchers in the Department of Electrical Engineering have developed a system for lens-free tomographic imaging.


Traditional light microscopy is a critical tool in medical imaging, diagnostics, and in research, however much of the technology remains fundamentally unchanged since their development (i.e. use of lenses and eyepiece/detector). In efforts to visualize increasingly smaller features and gain high resolution and contrast has resulted in significantly larger and more complex microscopes. With the advent of microfluidic (lab-on-a-chip) technology we have begun to be able to handle biological samples within miniaturized systems. However, we still rely on traditional light microscopes, which are several orders of magnitude larger, and have limited fields of view to image microfluidic devices. As a result there is a current clear need for miniaturized imaging platforms for microfluidic technologies.


UCLA researchers led by Prof. Aydogan Ozcan have developed a new system for lens-free tomographic imaging. They have demonstrated for the first time in high resolution and large field of view a tomographic image utilizing a lens-free system on a microfluidic chip. This technology also allows for pixel super resolution techniques to be applied to optical tomographic imaging.


This technology could be used to generate tomography images of organelles, cells, cellular components, or small particles in static or flow based environments.


  • Technology can be incorporated into microfluidics
  • Much smaller form factor than traditional imaging techniques
  • Lens-less technology

State Of Development

This technology has been used to visualize several biological and synthetic samples.

Patent Status

Country Type Number Dated Case
United States Of America Issued Patent 9,605,941 03/28/2017 2011-373


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  • Ozcan, Aydogan

Other Information


lab-on-chip, microfluidics, microscopy, tomographic imaging, lens-free tomographic imaging, lab-on-chip imaging, and super resolution optical imaging

Categorized As