Fuji Life Science

FujiFilm LAS-3000 / LAS-4000 Camera Repair


LAS-3000, LAS-4000 & LAS-4010 (ImageQuant) Camera Head Repair
The LAS-3000, LAS-4000 (FujiFilm 2001-2009) and ImageQuant LAS-4010 (GE Healthcare 2009-) camera heads are precision cooled CCDs for measuring very low light levels in biological samples. The cooling can be set to -35C with a maximum cooling capability of 60C below ambient.


LAS3000 Condensation


Fault Symptoms
There are a number of symptoms which may be seen over time. Just one of these faults may be evident or any combination of these. The faults may be transient, but if any of these are seen this means that the camera needs to be repaired and if left unrepaired the problems will become progressively worse eventually leading to the possible destruction of the camera!

1. Cooling Problems

Slow or Inadequate Cooling
The LAS-3000 camera should be able to achieve a cooling of -35C. Typical normal operation is set to -30C, but setting the temperature to -35C is a good test of the health of the camera. From first being switched on it should take around 4 minutes to cool from ambient to -35C followed by around 1 minute further for the temperature to stabilise (it will initially overshoot by 1C or 2C). If the peltier cooling device has become damaged either by a natural component failure, or more likely due to the introduction of moisture into the counting chamber, then gradually the cooling capability of this peltier device is reduced. Initially the user will see that it takes much longer to arrive at the working temperature and then progressively the user must operate the camera at warmer temperatures. -25C is the warmest the camera can be operated at, but a repair as soon as a fault is detected is recommended.

Frosted CCD or Window
As air is drawn into the counting chamber moisture in the air can form frost on the CCD or even the window at the front of the counting chamber. This will manifest itself as blurred images and greatly reduced sensitivity. If the camera is allowed to warm this frosting may evaporate the camera may be cooled again and the frosting not necessarily re-appear. Of course with time this frosting will become more frequent.

Condensation on the CCD or Window
As air is drawn into the counting chamber moisture in the air can condense on the CCD and drop onto the CCD window. Images acquired may show areas affected by droplets of water, some being quite large covering up to one third of the image. Of course condensation also forms at other places in the chamber which can cause damage to the CCD, peltier cooler or internal electronics. As soon as this fault is detected the camera should be repaired.

Oxide Deposits on the CCD or Window
Moisture in the air drawn into the chamber can cause oxidation of the aluminium and steel components which become airbourne and are deposited on the CCD or window when condensation of moisture occurs. This manifests itself as blurring of acquired images.

Erratic Temperature Monitoring
A common problem is the CCD temperature being displayed with erratic values. The CCD may operate correctly for a while and then suddenly show very high or very low values. This is invariably due to the temperature sensor by the CCD being affected by condensation or frosting but can also be due to the semiconductor device itself failing.

Cracked Chamber Window
A rare effect is a cracked CCD window. Well, believe it or not it looks like a crack but is in fact just an obscure effect caused by the condensation of moisture on the window. This is easily cleaned during the refurbishment process.

2. Image Capture Problems

Blank White Image When Focusing and/or
Blank White/Grey or Uniform Over-exposed (red) Image Capture

This fault is caused by component failure on the internal video capture board of the camera head. We have access to new stock of these faulty components and can repair this printed circuit board in-house on our SMD component rework station facility. Turnaround time is less than 1 week.


Refurbishment Details

How Much Does Refurbishment Cost?
We can provide a full LAS-3000, LAS-4000 or LAS-4010 camera head refurbishment. GE Healthcare / FujiFilm no longer repair or refurbish these camera heads. This price includes fitting a new factory original peltier device. The camera is fully cleaned, refilled with an inert dry gas and tested for at least 24 hours.

How Long Does It Take?
We usually turn the repair around easily within 1 week of receiving the camera head from you.

Is The Repair Guaranteed?
The repair is guaranteed for 12 months (excluding the cost of you shipping the camera back to us) with a tiered lower repair cost for up to 3 years.

Where Is The Repair Done?
Camera head repairs and refurbishment are performed at our LAS camera repair facility in the UK.

Whose Cameras Will We Repair?
We will repair any camera worldwide whether you are an end user or distributor.

What Are The Alternatives?
Since the FujiFilm / GE Healthcare Strategic Alliance in 2009, the support for these cameras has gradually been phased out and support for these systems is no longer offered by these companies.

Contact Us Today!
Contact your local distributor or contact us by phone, fax or e-mail for advice on the condition of your CCD, how to remove it from the darkroom cabinet and how to pack it for shipping to us for repair.More

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