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Automated Glass Slide Archive System

Digitisation of the pathology in the Region of Southern Denmark has led to significant changes in the workflows for doctors as well as changed procedures and a completely new workflow for the laboratory: the digitisation of pathology glass slides.


Start: 2019
End: Summer 2021

The glass slides are scanned for very high resolution images. At Odense University Hospital, 1600 slides are scanned and handled per day, and then must be stored for up to three weeks. That gives a total of 24,000 slides at a time, which must be precisely stored and tracked.


The purpose of the project was to create a robotic solution that could automatically file the glass slides to achieve increased automation in the laboratory regarding the scanning of pathology slides.

The robot had to be able to put the slides in their correct place by taking them individually out of the scanner rack and placing them on a shelf. It had to be able to ensure complete traceability so that the glass slides could be recovered, it had to be able to dispose of glass automatically, and it had to be scalable - with the future OUH hospital in mind.


The robot is four metres wide and two metres deep. It consists of a metal shelf unit with a robot arm running on a rail behind the shelf unit. The whole system is encapsulated.

The archiving robot works by collecting pathology slides from the scanner rack, scanning the code on the slide and loading it together with a time stamp into the system. The robot then places the glass on a shelf in the system, where it will remain until it needs to be used again – or until it has reached its expiry date three weeks later, after which it is automatically discarded.


The project was carried out by the Department of Pathology at Odense University Hospital in collaboration with the company Kilde Automation.


The project was funded by the Region of Southern Denmark’s Innovation Fund.

Tina Green

Tina Green

Chief Consultant

Department of Pathology

(+45) 6541 4891
Esben Hansen

Esben Hansen

Technical Manager

Centre for Clinical Robotics

(+45) 5146 6767