Microscopy cryostat 4 K with the lowest helium consumption and fastest cooldown on the market

  • Very short working distanceMicroscopy cryostat 4 K - MicrostatHe
  • 2.2 - 500 K temperature range
  • Low liquid helium consumption - as little as 0.45 l/h using a low loss LHe transfer tubeRapid cooldown: 4.2 K in less than 10 minutes
  • A compact, light weight system - only 1.8 kg
  • Choice of reflectance (one window) or transmission (two windows) configuration
  • Supplied with the new MercuryiTC temperature controller

Ideal for use with microscope-based spectrometers.

A unique feature of the MicrostatHe is its interchangeable 'cold unit' which allows the same core cooling unit to be fitted into a MicrostatHe Rectangular Tail or an OptistatCF-V outer body for huge experimental flexibility.


Optical specifications


Window thickness


0.5 mm

1.5 mm

Clear access diameter

10 mm

25 mm

Sample holder to window top surface

4.5 mm

5.5 mm

Angle of admittance (to surface of sample holder at centre)



Max sample thickness

5 mm

5 mm

Max sample diameter

20 mm

20 mm

 All dimensions are approximate and relate to the top window with plain sample holder in central position

 Product specifications



Cooling medium

Liquid helium (can be used with liquid nitrogen)

Operating temperature range

2.2 K to 500 K (with EPS40 pump)


3.2 K to 500 K (with GF4 pump)

Temperature stability

± 0.1 K

Helium consumption

< 0.45 lhr-1 (at 4.2 K)

Cool down time

< 10 minutes from ambient to 4.2 K with transfer tube cold

Sample holder drift at constant temperature

±1 µm (typical – see note 1)*

Sample holder vibration

0.1 µm (typical – see note 2)*

Sample window material

Spectrosil B fused quartz

Other materials available on request


Standard temperature sensor

3-point calibrated rhodium iron (see note 3)

Sample change time

30 min (approx)


1.8 kg

* Approximate measurement. The stability is neither measured nor guaranteed and will be dependent upon the system’s final configuration and the environment that the equipment is used in.

1. Thermal drift of the sample position was measured after the cryostat temperature had stabilised for half an hour at base temperature. At temperatures above 4.2 K the time to reach thermal equilibrium is considerably longer. Typical values for the drift have been measured tube 1 µm in 5 minutes below 100 K and 1 µm in 1 minute above 100 K.

2. Vibration levels were measured with the cryostat, LLT600/13 transfer tube and a diaphragm pump. Room temperature measurements showed that in all directions the displacement due to mechanical vibration for frequencies greater than 500 Hz is negligible. For frequencies below 500 Hz vibration levels are less than 0.1 µm.

3. The cryostat is supplied with a temperature sensor mounted in the heat exchanger. The sample holder is in thermal contact with the heat exchanger. The temperature difference between the sample position and the heat exchanger has been measured to approximately 0.4 K.


System Components/Options


  • A wide range of window materials can be fitted to the MicrostatHe - see the 'Windows for optical cryostats guide' in Downloads
  • Standard window thickness is 0.5 mm with clear 10 mm access diameter. We also offer an option for a 25 mm access diameter window with a thickness of 1.5 mm
  • Transmission experiments use an alternative bottom flange with a second window fitted and a transmission sample holder
  • Additional or replacement window flanges available via the Oxford Instruments Direct - Cryospares® online catalogue

 Temperature controller

  • MercuryiTC intelligent Cryogenic Environment Controller

Pump options

  • A simple GF4 oil-free vane pump is supplied for operation to 3.2 K
  • Lower temperatures to 2.2 K use a single-stage EPS40 rotary pump

See also the MicrostatHiRes for a high-stability, low-vibration microscopy cryostat with sample in vacuum.



The MicrostatHe optical cryostat works on a continuous flow (CF) principle using an oil-free pump to draw liquid helium from a storage vessel along a transfer tube to the heat exchanger ('pull mode'). Temperature control is achieved by a combination of manual or automatic helium flow control and power dissipated in an electrical heater, regulated using a temperature controller.

The cryostat can also be used in 'push mode', in which case the flow of liquid helium is generated by pressurising the storage dewar. The advantage is that the need for a gas flow pump is removed, eliminating the vibration and noise generated by the pump, and reducing the system cost.



Research areas Technique (optical microscopy & microscope based techniques)
Study of molecular bonds in crystal lattices Micro-FTIR
Study of molecular energy levels Micro-Raman Scattering and inelastic light scattering
Studies of Quantum Dot structures in AS/GaHS Micro-luminescence

Quantum systems



Downloads & further information

To download our Microstat product guide click here


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