BeamWise credited for helping Kinetic River design instrument for National Cancer Institute

Kinetic River Corp. Awarded Contract from National Cancer Institute for Potomac Modular Flow Cytometer

Flexible Architecture of Custom Instrumentation Enables Novel Applications in Cell Analysis

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., Oct. 5, 2016 Kinetic River Corp., a leader in flow cytometry instrumentation, announced today being awarded a contract from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) for delivery of its flagship Potomac modular flow cytometer, customized for the use of novel light sources.

The Potomac modular flow cytometer is a flexible platform designed for ease of modification and upgrades. Customizable from 1 to 7 lasers and from 4 to 20 detection channels, it can accommodate novel light sources and detectors.

The Potomac is a flow cytometer designed for flexibility and modularity. Built almost entirely with off-the-shelf parts, it is easily customized and reconfigured. The Potomac fits the needs of customers unsatisfied with cookie-cutter flow cytometry solutions.

“The NCI order is a validation of our approach to instrument design and customization,” stated Giacomo Vacca, Ph.D., president of Kinetic River. “The needs of this customer simply could not be met with standard products. The Potomac‘s open layout and modular architecture make it easy to integrate novel light sources and detectors, and to modify the system configuration over time.”

The Potomac flow cytometer was purchased by the laboratory of William Telford, Ph.D., at the National Cancer Institute, where it will be used to test novel laser sources for applicability to flow cytometry. It will also serve as a test bed for new detectors, electronics and other technologies critical to the future of flow cytometry.

The Potomac customized for NCI incorporates a fiber-coupled 488-nm laser light source, two scattering detectors, and five channels for fluorescence detection. It additionally receives laser beams from external sources, such as pulsed and supercontinuum lasers, for novel excitation of cell samples. The optical bench is based on rails and cube/rod assemblies from Excelitas Technologies, simplifying alignment and allowing easy reconfiguration.

For optical system design, Kinetic River uses its own proprietary modeling tools, which allow interactive design exploration on an intuitive dashboard interface. For customization of the instrument, it relies on BeamWise®, a 3D CAD optomechanical design tool that streamlines system development through the creation of a virtual optical bench.

About Kinetic River

Kinetic River Corp. is a biophotonics design and product development company specializing in life science research and biomedical applications. Based in California’s Silicon Valley, Kinetic River offers cutting-edge flow cytometry instrumentation solutions, including the Potomac and the Danube, a fluorescence lifetime flow cytometer. Kinetic River also provides a range of technical consulting services and training seminars to clients worldwide. For more information, visit

Contact: Giacomo Vacca, President, Kinetic River Corp.; (650) 269-0726, Email
Kinetic River® and the Kinetic River logo are registered trademarks of Kinetic River Corp.
BeamWise® is a registered trademark of BeamWise, Inc.

Photo updated 2022