Laboratory incubators serve a wide range of applications from culturing, bacteriology, warming of samples, E. coli tests, pharmaceutical studies, biotech testing, hematological studies, biochemical studies to food and beverage testing, clinical, cosmetics, pharmaceutical, solubility studies, fermentation studies, and diagnostic protocols for water. Analog and digital incubators are available in different sizes, (laptop size with a modest footprint as well as small room size), and types such as dry bath incubators with single or dual blocks, shaking incubators, and those with single and two or three shelves.

In addition to application requirements, size and capacity are important considerations when choosing an incubator. Volume can be determined on the basis of the number of samples that can be incubated at a time. Check out temperature, humidity, and CO2 ranges, and also determine whether it will require a water source or not. When it comes to accredited or certified laboratories, incubators that meet accuracy and reproducibility, and ensure regulatory compliance are necessary.


Leading manufacturers offer designs that reduce contamination with high-temperature decontamination cycles, HEPA filtration, and the use of antimicrobial copper components in the chamber. Benchmark Scientific offers models with see-through glass doors that allow the contents to be viewed without disturbing the temperature. Their MyTemp incubators feature digital temperature control for convenient ‘set and walkaway’ operation.

Boekel Scientific’s Complete Culture Control (CCC) robust analog incubators are made of 22 Ga steel. With an easy-to-clean aluminum interior, the devices come in four sizes from 0.5 to 5.0 cu. ft. chambers and optional solid or a clear see-thru door. Based on chamber size, several removable or adjustable shelves are also available. The 115 volt analog incubators meet UL and CSA requirements and all 230 volt units are CE marked. Boekel Scientific’s reliable and economical analog dry bath incubators are well suited for applications such as restriction digests, COD denaturing DNA, BUN, melting agar, coagulation studies, in situ hybridization and Hot Start PCR.

The Incubator-Genie from Scientific Industries is compact and lightweight, and its Magnetic Rotating/Rocking Platform and Clip Plate System can hold almost any container at any angle. Ideal for hybridization, this incubator offers precise temperature control and uniformity (range from 28°C to 75°C).

The best way to check out all these options and more is to browse the online store of an established laboratory equipment supplier.