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Maximize your Automated Sample Storage Capacity

When setting up a sustainable biobank, the efficient storage of samples is an important factor to take into consideration. Whether an upright freezer, a cryo tank or automated storage system is chosen, the samples should be organized in such a way that all freezer space is utilized to the maximum. In terms of labware, the storage capacity can be optimized by using compact sample storage racks based on the ANSI/SLAS (formerly known as SBS) standards and durable sample storage tubes with optimal sealing performance that ensure contamination and sample degradation is minimized. Selecting an appropriate tube volume that corresponds to the needs of each research project is also a critical aspect in optimizing sample storage capacity.

In this blog post we focus on why and how sample storage racks with the ANSI/SLAS format can be utilized to efficiently organizing sample storage. The American National Standard Institute (ANSI) and the Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening (SLAS) have set clearly defined dimensional standards for microplate development. Using a sample storage rack that meets these internationally recognized ANSI/SLAS standards, will streamline processes and reduce costs by ensuring compatibility across systems [1].

Within the ANSI/SLAS standard, sample storage racks are commonly used in a 96-, 48- or 24-well format. Micronic, a leader in sample storage innovation, now offers a solution to optimize the usage of the ANSI/SLAS footprint even further. The 138 HD Rack, a 138-well format rack, increases the sample storage capacity within the ANSI/SLAS format up to 43% per rack. The HD Rack is especially designed to be compatible with automated sample storage systems and the rack side walls are closed for easy gripping with most robotic arms. In addition, the rack uses a unique open bottom design, which permits tubes to be manipulated by robotic systems avoiding time-consuming procedures.

A series of automated storage systems the Micronic HD Rack is compatible with are the fully automated BiOLiX stores from LiCONiC. The LiCONiC BiOLiX biobanking product series includes four product lines with each line explicitly designed to meet the needs of the various biobanking applications. The BiOLiX series are a complete and trusted solution in the market for automated biobanking. The product lines are flexible to store different formats and matrix of ANSI/SLAS format racks and cryoboxes with a defined layout and storing temperature (+4°C to -185°C). The installed picking unit picks single tubes from source racks to destination racks. All storage systems are compatible with the Micronic labware and can use the HD racks to expand the capacity of >43% in a BioLiX system and handle the 1D and 2D barcode in the same process. There are already several customers that are using Micronic sample storage labware within a LiCONiC store. Below an example of the LiCONiC tube picking unit with a 138 HD tube rack.

Micronic tubes in 138-well format rackMicronic in Liconic store

[1] Jacquith, K. 2014 consulted at:


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