open-source electrophysiology

We are gauging community interest in adding the large, 64-tetrode version of the shuttleDrive to the Open Ephys store. Please let us know if you are interested in purchasing this for your lab along with any pricing constraints. Note that the 16-tetrode version of the drive is already available in the store.


Robust, light, fast to build.

The shuttleDrive is a chronic drive implant for extracellular electrophysiology that can be used to individually position up to 16 microwire electrodes or electrode bundles in mice, with up to 64 channels. This design is the successor to the flexDrive. and has improved build speed, robustness, size, and drive stability and linearity.

The implant weighs approximately 2 grams, so it can be used in freely moving mice. The small size and low center of gravity of the design also makes it possible to target off-center areas, or even to fit a drive implant under a microscope for simultaneous imaging and electrophysiology.

The flexible recording array geometry allows recordings from multiple brain areas. Individual lowering of each electrode makes it possible to hit deep and small targets.

The drive is easy to build, two or three drives can be built per day even with relatively little training. It accommodates arbitrary spatial arrangements of electrodes, and is compatible with a variety of recording systems.

Screenshot_2019-07-19_10-21-10.png

Channel count: 18 drives, up to 64 channels per drive.

Weight: ~2g for 16 tetrode drives.

Build time:  < 1 day.

4.5 mm travel distance, fully enclosed mechanism, low center of gravity.

Drive parts, tools, and accessories can be purchased from our online store.

The drive consists of the following components:

  • A 3d printed drive body

  • 3d printed drive shuttles

  • Polymide guide tubes

  • Polymicro shuttle tubes

These components can be purchased as bundle on our store.

  • Custom screws (reusable), and

  • Guide tube material, and.

  • Electrode interface boards (for 64ch or 32ch omnetics headstages )

.. are available on our store.

To assemble the drive, an assembly jig, and some other tools are needed (also on the store).

  • Assenbly jig

  • Custom screwdriver

Building drives just got easy

Multiple innovative features make this drive design faster to build than any previous designs.

Even with little training, drives can be built from scratch in a few hours, and thanks to the new tetrode twister, making the electrodes is not a significant factor any longer. The main remaining step that takes up time is loading and gold-pinning the tetrodes - for that step you still need steady hands and some time.

<<<< Real-time video shows construction of 4 drive mechanisms and loading of a tetrode.

Citing the drive: 
When using the Open Ephys shuttle drive implants, please cite the paper:

Jakob Voigts, Jonathan P. Newman, Matthew A. Wilson, Mark T. Harnett (2019). An easy-to-assemble, robust, and lightweight drive implant for chronic tetrode recordings in freely moving animals
https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/746651v1