Stellenbosch University’s Fully Automated Biorepository to Store 3.5M Biospecimens

A robotic arm, -80°C temperatures, and 3.5 million biomedical samples are just some of the features of a state-of-the-art bio-repository at the newly launched Biomedical Research Institute (BMRI) at Stellenbosch University (SU).

The university launched the R1.2 billion biomedical research facility on Friday, saying the new building will place it at the forefront of biomedical sciences.


The fully automated Biorepository Unit, the only one of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere, will allow the facility to store up to 3.5 million samples at – 80°C, in an automated biological storage system. This replaces chest freezers previously used and conserves energy while ensuring sample integrity.

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