Modern high-end microscopy requires a multitude of various types of microscope-techniques to be unified in a single system. This allows generating differently contrasted microscopic images. STED is one technology, and it requires already additional beam-routings as compared to pure fluorescence imaging.
The Leica TCS SP5 offers configurations with STED, confocal and multiphoton imaging in the very same instrument. This unique concept unites technologies of super-resolution fluorescence, multichannel confocal fluorescence, multiphoton-excited fluorescence and second-harmonic or higher order nonlinear image generation.
The various beam-paths are shown and explained in this tutorial.