Conventional methods of testing for ash dieback rely on samples being sent to a laboratory from the outbreak site and it can take a number of days to get the results back. Using the Smartcycler, scientists and inspectors can take samples of potentially infected trees and test them for the presence of the fungus, getting the results back in just over an hour. The Smartcycler operates through a computer and is about the size of a large car battery, weighing about 10kg.