Open-source hardware and software are becoming more and more common. We have built an open-source robotic system. We call it the Imaging Rig. It has been designed to measure platelet function. It is an automated system, and you just place your sample and test strips into the system and run the code. When you write the necessary python code, there is nothing you cannot do. Of course, there are always some difficulties. Knowing how to direct the motor we will use, having the camera take pictures at the time you want are just a few examples.
Our system has a Raspberry Pi, Pi camera, servo motor, handmade light source, 3D printed parts, gantry plate and relay. Our aim is to measure the rise and velocity of blood in capillaries using Microcapillary film. Although working with blood is the primary purpose, the settings can be changed or reconstructed according to the desired sample/test. We have tried different colored liquids and we know that we can work with any color biological liquid. We can take 6 to 8 photos in 1 second, which allows us to measure the velocity of the liquid in the capillary.
If you are interested, you can take a look at our GitLab page: Imaging_Rig. There are 3D design files and codes, as well as user information with technical specifications.
Building and using your own experimental device is an absolutely satisfying feeling. Now you know that you do not need to buy expensive devices. Give yourself a chance!