Some of the biggest discoveries in the history of science have depended on the Microscope, which helps us see the less known world of micro organisms. Scientists, researchers, medical technicians, and students use different types of microscopes to conduct their explorations in life science. Depending on the purpose, sample type, magnification, and application, you should select a suitable microscope. The choice of a microscope heavily depends on the requirements of the user and available resources.
Some of the most commonly used microscopes are:
Invented by Antony Van Leeuwenhoek in the 17th century, the simple Microscope is also identified as the first Microscope known to be humankind. Leeuwenhoek combines a convex lens with a holder that can contain specimens. With the ability to magnify the specimens up to 200 to 300 times, this device was an advanced version of a magnifying glass. Although we call it simple today, it was powerful enough to pave the way for several scientific breakthroughs. We were able to gather information about several biological specimens, which included a study of the shapes of different red blood cells. Today, we have replaced the simple Microscope with more powerful devices, so you may not find them used in labs any longer.
The Optical Microscope, also known as the light Microscope, is more prevalent in labs these days. You may have come across one too. Students, hobbyists, and scientists often use it for their work. This Microscope uses lenses and noticeable light to magnify the specimens.
Basically, optical microscopes are divided into three main categories:
- Compound Microscopes
You are very likely to recognize this Microscope from your student days. A lot of movies also show these microscopes. Used in many labs today, the compound microscope’s original design was a compound optical.
It works by lighting up the underside of the slide on which the specimen has been placed, using a light bulb. A series of lenses help in the magnification of the specimen, out of which one is placed close to the specimen while the other is placed close to your eye. The lens near the specimen is called the objective lens, while the one near the eye is called the eyepiece. It helps you view the specimen in the form of a two-dimensional image. Adjustments can be made to the image based on the strength of your lenses.
The parts of a compound microscope can vary based on their design and model, but in most cases, we find them to be standard. This helps anyone to use and learn it with relative ease. One of the biggest advantages of a compound microscope is that it can achieve high levels of magnification for the specimen. It is also considered to be affordable for students, amateurs, and scientists.
- Stereo Microscopes
An easy way to differentiate between a stereo microscope and a compound microscope is that it has two eyepieces instead of one. This helps in creating a three-dimensional image by using the two eyepieces to send separate images to the right and left eye.
Usually, the specimen is illuminated from the top instead of underneath. This is why it is used widely to study dissection, blurred specimens or circuit board work. They are good for inspection and manufacturing as well.
These microscopes are easy to use, and they are affordable too. As a result, many amateurs, professionals, and people in industries that are not driven by extensive scientific research tend to use it. A stereo microscope has low magnification, so you will not be able to clearly see individual cells. The biggest advantage of this Microscope is its ability to show specimens in three-dimensional images.
- Confocal Microscope
The confocal Microscope uses laser light to scan specimens which may have been dyed. To use a confocal microscope, you will first prepare the sample on a slide and then insert it in the Microscope. Then, with the help of a dichromatic mirror, the Microscope reproduces an amplified image of the sample on your computer screen. You can also create 3D images by scanning multiple images and putting them together. It offers a high degree of magnification, and the resolution is much better. These microscopes are very common in cell biology and medical applications. If you are planning to buy medical Microscope, then you will find the Confocal microscope to be best suited for your requirements.
The average people will only use a stereo or compound microscope, but it’s always fun to know about the others as well.
So, if you’re the one who is looking to buy a student microscope or medical Microscope then, there are a lot of providers in the market who will help you get the one as per your needs and resources.
Hope this article was helpful for you to gather information about microscopes.
Let us know in the comment section below that whether you have used microscopes in life or not. And if yes, then which one & how was the experience.