Protein Crystallization

Increase Throughput + Reproducibility

Automate Your Entire Protein Crystallization Workflow

Manage the entire protein crystallization experimentation process, from design and dispense to image viewing and analysis all from one software, ROCK MAKER®.

ROCK MAKER is a Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) that is there every step of the way, with powerful yet easy-to-use tools that help you get the results you need quickly.


ROCK MAKER integrates with:

NT8® - Drop Setter

FORMULATOR® - Screen Builder

MANTIS® - Liquid Handler

ROCK IMAGER® - Crystallization Imagers

SONICC® - Nanocrystal Detector

FRAP - LCP Conditions Prescreening

Trusted Worldwide by Labs of All Sizes

Our protein crystallization solutions are trusted in hundreds of laboratories worldwide including at the top 10 leading pharmaceutical companies and at academic research institutes from around the globe.


Our clients come from a broad range of scientific study and backgrounds. We have flexible automation and software solutions to fit your budget and workflow, regardless of lab size.


Reliable + Reproducible Protein Drop Setting

The NT8® is a fast, nanoliter-volume liquid handler with drop dispensing capability, including Lipidic Cubic Phase (LCP) experiments. The 8-tip head aspirates and dispenses drops from 25 nL to 1.5 μL.

  • Set up hanging drop, sitting drop, microbatch, in meso Lipidic Cubic Phase (LCP) drops, additive and seeding experiments


  • 8-tip head aspirates + dispenses drops from 25nL to 1.5 μL


  • Reusable tips give you the option to dispose tips after each dispense or reuse them to reduce costs + environmental waste


  • Proportionally-Controlled Active Humidification minimizes sample evaporation and increases experiment reproducibility

Build Protein Crystallization Screens with Ease

The FORMULATOR® Screen Builder is a next-generation liquid handler designed specifically for protein crystallography. The system uses patented microfluidic technology to dispense up to 34 different ingredients. A 96-nozzle dispensing chip can dispense any volume of any ingredient of any viscosity into any well.

  • Positive displacement chip can dispense volumes down to 200 nL with no upper limit into any microplate type, even VDX/Linbro plates


  • Integrated barcode scanner automatically loads experiment and ingredient data while bottle sensors automatically know where ingredients are located


  • Reduce your lab’s costs and environmental impact as no consumables are needed


  • Closed ingredient containers prevent evaporation, contamination, and noxious fumes from escaping

Find the optimal conditions for LCP crystal growth...

without waiting on your crystals.

Prior to setting up crystallization experiments, you can quickly screen LCP conditions using Fluorescence Recovery After Photobleaching (FRAP).  FRAP is an optical technique that assesses how easily protein is moving about in an LCP drop. If protein is aggregated, or the LCP structure is collapsed, the protein will not diffuse and therefore never crystallize. 

  • Accelerate crystallization methods and rule out suboptimal conditions without having to wait on the crystals growing


  • Automated and user-friendly system requires a few clicks of a button to initiate a complete analysis of your plate


  • All of the results and analyses are integrated into FORMULATRIX' protein crystallography specific software lab management software (ROCK MAKER and ROCK IMAGER).

FRAP was developed in collaboration with Vadim Cherezov (TSRI) and the JCIMPT center led by Ray Stevens and supported by the NIH Common Fund in Structural Biology.

Learn More About Your Protein Drops with Crystal Clear Imaging

ROCK IMAGER® is the most trusted imager for protein crystallography and used by the top 10 pharmaceutical companies and many renowned academic centers worldwide.


Image your drops with multiple imaging technologies allowing you to discover more about your protein drops including Visible Light, UV, Multi-Fluorescence Imaging, FRAP, and SONICC.

  • Various models to fit your budget and workflow to image a single plate up to 940 SBS plates or 1500 LCP plates


  • Seamless integration with ROCK MAKER or your current crystallization software via ROCK IMAGER API


  • Temperature regulation options available for precise temperature control from 30°C down to 4°C


  • Multiple plate options available including SBS, Linbro, Nextal, Terasaki/HLA and LCP plates

Remove the guesswork.

SONICC® finds crystals that other technologies cannot.

The ultimate imaging technology in visualizing protein crystals, Second Order Nonlinear Imaging of Chiral Crystals (SONICC) definitively finds crystals buried in precipitate or submicron crystals naked to the eye. Two powerful technologies, Second Harmonic Generation (SHG) and Ultraviolet Two-Photon Excited Fluorescence (UV-TPEF) are combined together in a completely automated imager to quickly image your high throughput crystallization plates and positively identify protein crystals.

  • Crystals appear white against a stark black background, helping you to identify crystals even in murky environments


  • Quickly find difficult to see crystals simply by glancing at thumbnails of your plate


  • Detect extremely thin crystals, microcrystals <1 μm, and crystals obscured in birefringent LCP


  • Definitively distinguish between precipitate and crystals


  • Determine which crystals are protein and which are not


"As a crystallization robot capable of sitting or hanging screens and prepping expansion plates, the NT8 is fabulous. It is accurate, reliable and flexible. Notably, the water displacement mechanism and small tips allow for extremely low error rates at 100 nanoliter volumes. The tip washing module means that it requires almost no consumables and therefore costs nearly nothing to operate. Moreover, the machine is robust and forgiving even to the most careless or novice user. The NT8 is not just our crystallization robot, it is our most important liquid dispensing instrument."

Sirano Dhe-Paganon

Dana Farber Cancer Institute, HMS

We have had our ROCK IMAGER 1000 for nearly 2 years and have setup and imaged >7000 plates in that time. The system has performed very reliably over that span from a mechanical standpoint and the associated Rock Maker software has made tracking, viewing and organizing our many projects simple and easy. The seamless integration of our Formulatrix Formulator with the imaging system has allowed us to carry out optimizations in a high throughput manner as well. Just as important is that the service and support have been excellent, with most issues dealt with remotely and new customer-driven features added at regular intervals.

Rafael Toro

Albert Einstein School of Medicine

"I believe that we have taken the NT8 to its limits. In our lab, there are times when the NT8 is running non-stop for multiple business days. The sitting drop plates we use have 3 wells to each reservoir, really testing the robot's ability to dispense in the correct location. As we approach 2 years with the NT8, I can say, with certainty, that the NT8 is a powerful robot. It dispenses its drops with high accuracy and precision. It is very versatile, being able to dispense its drops on all plates that are programmable. I am very pleased with the machine. My only complaint is the speed of the robot. Only 8 tip-heads are available for the low volume and high volumes tips. Nonetheless, I would recommend this robot over any other competitors."

Jonathan Alvarez

Althea, CMO

"The NT8 is a very versatile instrument that is fundamental to my research. It provides me with the flexibility to set up crystallisation plates as well aiding in the development of new methodologies. The low volume tips and its humidifier is a crucial aspect of the design that allows us to deal with highly viscous solutions and accurately dispense down to nanoliter volumes. The service team and engineers provide outstanding support and I would highly recommend this robot to other users."

Connie Darmanin

La Trobe University