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ibidi Pump System

ibidi Pump System View larger

A pump system for the cultivation of, e.g. endothelial, cells under flow for simulation of blood vessels

  • Ideal simulation of various physiological conditions - continuous unidirectional, oscillating, and pulsatile flow
  • Compatible with the ibidi Heating Systems, all incubators, and incubated microscopes
  • Minimal mechanical stress, minimal amount of medium and supplement needed

System includes:

ibidi Pump
Notebook with PumpControl software

Fluidic Unit

  Perfusion Set

Contact ibidi
for a free demo of the ibidi Pump System.


Product Details


Components of the ibidi Pump System

ibidi Pump

  • Computer-controlled air pressure pump
  • Operates up to four parallel Fluidic Units per ibidi Pump

PumpControl Software

  • Easy setup of an automated flow control for flow assays
  • Internal calculation for flow rates, shear rates, and shear stress

Perfusion Set

  • Includes tubing and reservoirs to perform flow assays in combination with the Fluidic Unit
  • Designed for various flow rates and volumes (see table below)

Fluidic Unit

  • Flow-switching device with electrically controlled valves
  • Equipped with a holder for one Perfusion Set (10 ml) and connected µ-Slide(s)
  • For operation in the cell culture incubator
  • Optional: Reservoir Holder for 2 ml and 50 ml Perfusion Sets

Optional: Fluidic Unit Quad

  • Combines four Fluidic Units into one system
  • Operated by a single ibidi Pump

Optional: Heating Insert Adapter for Perfusion Assay

Technical Features:

  • Operates up to four parallel Fluidic Units per ibidi Pump
  • Flow characteristics: all flow types are laminar
  • Some examples:
    • Unidirectional flow simulates veins or small arteries
    • Oscillating flow simulates disturbed conditions at vessel branchings or valves
    • Pulsatile flow simulates arterial conditions
  • Flow rate using ibidi µ-Slides: 0.1 – 40 ml/min
  • Shear stress using ibidi µ-Slides: 0.2 – 80 dyn s/cm2
  • Working volume: 2.5 ml / 12 ml / 50 ml
  • Suitable for all µ-Slides with Luer adapters
  • Also suitable for home-made flow chambers
  • Compatible with all incubators
  • Software-controlled flow rates and shear stress

System Overview:

The ibidi Perfusion System Perfectly Reflects the Natural Environment of Cells Under Flow Conditions

The ibidi Pump System consists of two main components: The ibidi Pump (computer controlled air pump, placed outside the incubator) and the Fluidic Unit (holder for cell media reservoirs and µ-Slide, tubing, and electrically controlled valve set, placed inside the incubator). By using this “split” approach, the closed circulation of the medium can be assembled separately in the laminar flow hood and transferred to the microscope or the incubator, without compromising the sterility of the system. The open architecture using the Luer connectors allows the use of any kind of flow devices. The PumpControl software controls the pressure, and subsequently the shear stress acting on the cells, and provides the possibility to program complex flow patterns.

Placing the Fluidic Unit inside a large-size microscope incubator allows for running long-term perfusion assays directly on the microscope. A defined temperature and CO2 concentration is assured over the whole perfusion, which is ncecesary for avoiding air bubbles. For short-term experiments, the usage of a small incubator, hosting the Fluidic Unit, next to the microscope is sufficient.

Principle of Unidirectional Flow

Applying pressured air to the reservoirs of the Fluidic Unit moves the medium and generates the flow in the µ-Slide channels. In order to avoid wasting any medium, the liquid is pumped back and forth between reservoir A and reservoir B by switching the valve V1.

To assure a unidirectional flow in the channel, the other valve V2 is switched simultaneously. As the tubing parts inserted in the valve V2 are criss-crossed, the medium is always directed to the same end of the channel slide.

Example of a Perfusion Set-up on a Microscope

Ideal Setup inside a large-size microscope incubator. In combination with the ibidi Heating & Incubation System for short-term experiments.

The ibidi Pump System Generates Minimal Mechanical Stress

Application Examples:

rAV CMV-LifeAct-TagRFP-transduced HUVEC, cultivated under 20 dyn / cm² in µ-Slide I 0.4 Luer

HUVEC, cultivated over 7 days at 10 dyn / cm². VE-cadherins are stained in green, cell nuclei are stained in blue.

Rolling and adhesion of polymorpho-
nuclear leukocytes on LPS-stimu-
lated cerebrovascular endothelial cells in µ-Slide VI 0.4 at 1 dyn / cm².
(Courtesy of G. Cepinskas, Ontario)

Suitable µ-Slides

The following ibidi µ-Slides can be attached to the ibidi Pump System:

Custom specific slides can also be used when utilizing the Luer adapters.

Perfusion Sets and µ-Slide Selection

Supporting Material




Application Notes


Scientific Posters


Product Flyer


Recommended Incubator


Practical Course


Register for a Laboratory Course at ibidi Munich / Germany:
Cell Cultivation under Perfusion and Live Cell Imaging

User Comments

Kenneth Martin, University College Cork, Ireland

"Thank you for the great products that you have developed over the years. The ibidi Pump System has immeasurably helped our research. We have recently published a paper in “Stem Cells” that uses your flow system, the µ-Slide I Luer, and the µ-Plate 96 Well very effectively. It seems to me that ibidi are constantly coming up with clever and useful products, and I like to keep an eye on what interesting things are coming out next from them."

Kenneth Martin
University College Cork

Shane R. McSweeney, Cardiovascular Division, BHF Centre of Research Excellence, School of Medicine, King’s College London, United Kingdom

"The µ-Slide I Luer facilitates the culture of endothelial cells under defined complex flow patterns. We are particularly interested in the effects of oscillatory shear stress on redox signaling pathways, and the ibidi Air Pump and Fluidic Units are ideal systems for this purpose. The µ-Slides are convenient for both live and fixed cell imaging as well as the collection of protein and RNA samples and other cell analyses. The system has allowed us to easily investigate physiological shear patterns in vitro without a background in engineering.”

Shane R. McSweeney
Cardiovascular Division
BHF Centre of Research Excellence
School of Medicine
King’s College London
United Kingdom

Dr. Nynke van den Akker, Maastricht University, Maastricht, The Netherlands

“We've been working with the ibidi Pump System and Labware for over 5 years now and have recommended it to numerous colleagues as well. The plastics are ideal for cell culture and all forms of imaging, including automated imaging (easy to focus) and all sorts of fluorescence (clear, optically superb plastics). The ibidi Pump System in fact made the endothelial cell under flow the default of our lab! And above all, the technical support is always fast and efficient.”

Dr. Nynke van den Akker
Department of Cardiology
Maastricht University
The Netherlands

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