Although it occupies minimal benchtop space, firefly® boasts extensive functionality, featuring pipetting, dispensing, incubation, and shaking capabilities.
Throughout the development of firefly, SPT Labtech has been committed to enhancing usability and accessibility. This is evident in firefly’s software, where protocol development and setup have been streamlined via an intuitive and visual interface.
These recent improvements, developed directly by user feedback from the field, underscore SPT Labtech’s customer-centric approach to innovation. By listening to and understanding its users’ challenges, the company has refined these software enhancements to improve the laboratory experience.
Here is a selection of the key updates that have been introduced in the recent release.
1. Edit protocols more quickly and easily utilizing the grouped steps editor
A group steps editor has been introduced to enable protocol editing. This means that users no longer need to ungroup to edit grouped steps. The inclusion of breadcrumb navigation facilitates seamless movement between nested groups.
Image Credit: SPT Labtech
2. Multi-reagent aspirate/dispense support
With a click of a button, users can link together adjacent dispense steps of the same type. This enables steps to be performed simultaneously, increasing efficiency and speed in reagent addition.
3. Cloud protocol version control
Users can choose a protocol change entry from the history page to rollback to earlier versions of the protocol.
Image Credit: SPT Labtech
4. Introduction of lid support
Microplate lids are incorporated in firefly software as a type of labware, similar to tips and plates. Protocol steps can be configured to automatically transfer and stack lids as required, ensuring the protection of contents against contamination and evaporation without the need for manual intervention.
Image Credit: SPT Labtech
5. Undo/redo support when editing protocols
With this sophisticated improvement to the protocol design user experience, users can undo and redo unintentional changes to their protocols with a simple click of a button. This is especially beneficial when working with complex, large protocols, providing substantial time savings for firefly users.
6. Enhancement to feedback hub
SPT Labtech has made improvements to the way that users can provide instrument feedback to streamline troubleshooting and minimize downtime. Users now have three feedback options to choose from:
- Suggest a new feature: Share your ideas for new features—SPT Labtech will aim to make it happen.
- Report a software bug.
- Service request: Initiate a support ticket with one of our engineers for any mechanical or hardware issues.
7. Locking protocol support
This feature provides an additional level of security, particularly in larger collaborative groups. Users with this privilege can prevent protocols from being deleted or edited by other users. A locked protocol can only be unlocked by the user who locked it.
8. Support for dispense step syringe to well XYZ offsets
This new feature allows users to define the location within a well where liquid is dispensed. A validation step has also been introduced to prevent any potential collision scenarios.
firefly establishes a new standard in genomics liquid handling software, making automation accessible to all via its intuitive and visual user interface.
These recent improvements, developed directly by customer feedback from the field, reinforce firefly’s functionality and usability in simplifying NGS library and sample preparation.
About SPT Labtech
SPT Labtech designs and manufactures robust, reliable and easy-to-use solutions for life science. We enable life scientists through collaboration, deep application knowledge, and leading engineering to accelerate research and make a difference together. We offer a portfolio of products within sample management, liquid handling, and multiplexed detection that minimize assay volumes, reduce material handling costs and put the discovery tools back in the hands of the scientist.
At the heart of what we do
Many of our innovations have been born out of the desire to create solutions to existing customer problems; and it’s this ethos that drives SPT Labtech’s R&D efforts. Our strengths come from the trust our customers have with us to develop truly unique, automated technologies to meet their needs. We combine cutting edge science with first-rate engineering to put customers at the heart of everything we do.
A problem-solving state of mind
The substantial breadth of expertise within our company enables us to be involved in the full life cycle of our products from the initial design concept, mechanical and software engineering and prototyping, to final manufacture and sale. These qualities allow us to offer the best possible technical and mechanical support to all the equipment that we supply, hence maintaining excellent client relationships.
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