A linear motion device was designed and built to move small sample cells within the confined space of a liquid nitrogen Dewar cryostat. Instead of the often-used methods of flowing or rotating samples to generate motion, this cryostat insert simply translates the sample cell while maintaining atmospheric isolation. Accurate, repeatable and rapid translation over a 5 cm range with peak linear velocities of 1 m/s is attainable. The insert is constructed mainly from commercially available components and can be built with minimal effort. Another benefit is that the cryostat insert uses commercially available sample cells, allowing for maximal flexibility in satisfying pathlength and volume requirements and the cells can be easily replaced during the duration of the experiment. The motion device system can be easily installed into existing experimental apparatuses with confined volumes with minor modifications and can be used with liquid helium cryostats or for use in high vacuum applications. This motion is demonstrated by collecting temperature dependent ultrafast signals from the laser dye Rhodamine 640 in viscous glycerol at 170 and 293 K.

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