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OptiForce head stage in 3DOptiForce SignalOptiForce Controller

Optical Force Transducer

Designed as a core part of our MyoStretecher system, the IonOptix OptiForce is a revolutionary optical fiber interferometry-based force transducer specially designed to detect the nanoscopic forces from single isolated cardiac cells.  It offers two major advantages over existing technologies: sensitivity and speed, with detection limits down in the low nanoNewtons and a frequency response above 3kHz.

How it Works

The OptiForce works by using laser light to interrogate a reflective cantilever arm attached to one end of the myocyte. Contractile forces bend the cantilever and produce changes in the light path length.  Light reflected from the cantilever combines with light reflected from the tip of the optical fiber.  When the combined light waves are in-phase, the intensity of light returning to the recorder increases; out-of-phase, the intensity diminishes, creating an exquisitely sensitive transducer.  Because the cantilever can be made to any stiffness, the OptiForce can be easily modified to accommodate forces across a number of physiologically relevant ranges.  And because the distance that the cantilever needs to bend in order to produce quality signals is on the order of a fraction of a wavelength, the measurements are effectively isometric.


  • Fast: exquisite temporal response for capturing and resolving the fastest force changes
  • Sensitive: capable of detecting forces generated by single intact mouse myocytes at 37C
  • Flexible: exchanging force transducer probes allows users to measure forces from single myocytes to permeabilized muscle fibers


  • Frequency Response: >3.3kHz
  • Deflection: sub-micron compliance
  • Resolution: <10nN
  • Noise Band: 6nN


OptiForce User’s Manual


Note: This product is intended for research purposes only. It is not certified for clinical applications (including diagnostic purposes). Use of this product in uncertified applications is in violation of FDA regulations.


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