Posted on

The History of the Microscope

Before the advent of the microscope, we were faced with visual limitations.  The microscope, much like its precursors the magnifying glass and glass lenses were created to help us to see smaller things that would otherwise be very difficult to see with the naked eyes.

Invented in the 1590s, the first microscope of sort was created by Hans and Zacharias Jansen.  The innovators affixed lens of the ends of a tube and realised that using that contraption helped to make the objects larger. Doctor Giovanni Faber named the instrument.  After that, it stared becoming quite popular, especially among scientists.

By the time the eighteenth century rolled around, the microscope had already gotten many upgrades and was now even more widely used in the field of science.  The microscope maker Antoni van Leeuwenhoek is said to have increased the level of magnification in microscopes, which went a very far way in the discovery of bacteria and the life cycles of insects.

The 19th century bought with it, the construction of, among other things,

those slides to place the specimens that have already been examined on.  Also developed, were the objective lens, and the development of those objective lenses that controls the magnification and resolution of each specimen.

Fritz Zernike created the phase-contrast microscope that is used to examine material that is transparent, colorless and organic. Then the electron microscope was created by Ernst Ruska.  Gerd Binnig and Heinrich Rohrer developed the microscope that could scan and was used to view objects at the nuclear level.

Fast tract to this century, and the microscope is now everywhere and is capable of doing so much more.  For instance, the ultra-microscope was created by Richard Zsigmondy.  This super microscope aided him in observing objects below light’s wavelength.

There is also the compound microscope; a multi-purpose instrument. Its short focal length objective lens is used to form images that are significantly enlarged. This is the simplest microscope that is generally used by science students especially in school labs. It has two stages of magnification; the objective lens and the eyepiece.  One special feature of the compound microscope is its ability to light the specimen so it can be better seen.  There is also the digital microscope that comprises of a double view using a microscopic camera as well as digital camera which can send images to a computer screen. This type of microscope is extremely economical.

Posted on

The History of the Microscope

Before the advent of the microscope, we were faced with visual limitations.  The microscope, much like its precursors the magnifying glass and glass lenses were created to help us to see smaller things that would otherwise be very difficult to see with the naked eyes.

Invented in the 1590s, the first microscope of sort was created by Hans and Zacharias Jansen.  The innovators affixed lens of the ends of a tube and realised that using that contraption helped to make the objects larger. Doctor Giovanni Faber named the instrument.  After that, it stared becoming quite popular, especially among scientists.

By the time the eighteenth century rolled around, the microscope had already gotten many upgrades and was now even more widely used in the field of science.  The microscope maker Antoni van Leeuwenhoek is said to have increased the level of magnification in microscopes, which went a very far way in the discovery of bacteria and the life cycles of insects.

The 19th century bought with it, the construction of, among other things,

those slides to place the specimens that have already been examined on.  Also developed, were the objective lens, and the development of those objective lenses that controls the magnification and resolution of each specimen.

Fritz Zernike created the phase-contrast microscope that is used to examine material that is transparent, colorless and organic. Then the electron microscope was created by Ernst Ruska.  Gerd Binnig and Heinrich Rohrer developed the microscope that could scan and was used to view objects at the nuclear level.

Fast tract to this century, and the microscope is now everywhere and is capable of doing so much more.  For instance, the ultra-microscope was created by Richard Zsigmondy.  This super microscope aided him in observing objects below light’s wavelength.

There is also the compound microscope; a multi-purpose instrument. Its short focal length objective lens is used to form images that are significantly enlarged. This is the simplest microscope that is generally used by science students especially in school labs. It has two stages of magnification; the objective lens and the eyepiece.  One special feature of the compound microscope is its ability to light the specimen so it can be better seen.  There is also the digital microscope that comprises of a double view using a microscopic camera as well as digital camera which can send images to a computer screen. This type of microscope is extremely economical.

Posted on

Microscope Care

compound-microscopeTaking proper care of your microscope will ensure you have a piece of equipment that will provide years of usage as well as pinpoint and accurate information. Microscopes in general are precision pieces of equipment and should be well maintained, and cared for right from the beginning. If recording vital information from your microscope is important to you, microscope care should be at the top of your list. Now, there are a few different types of microscopes available, and each microscope will require its own type of care and maintenance.

In this article you will discover the proper care techniques that should be applied to these precision pieces of equipment, and how to prevent any future complications that can result from mishandling or rough usage.

Handling your Microscope Properly

In order to insure your microscope functions properly when it is time get used, you will need to make sure that you, and whoever else handles your equipment, uses proper handling techniques when moving and setting up your equipment. On a compound microscope, you will need to make sure that you do not carry the microscope by the arm piece section that connects the base and upper eyepiece tube. This is a common mistake and results in misalignments and inaccurate readings. The Microscope should always be carried using one hand under the base and holding the upper eyepiece tube. This creates stability and will not allow damage to either area.

Cleaning a Compound Microscope

Before getting started with cleaning any of your microscopes, you will need a few cleaning supplies such as clean dry wipes, lens cleaner, gauze and alcohol pads.
The procedure is explained assuming your compound microscope is fully assembled. Make sure your microscope is on a flat and stable surface before beginning. Using your dry wipes with a couple of drops of lens cleaner, you will begin cleaning the eyepiece objective lenses first, starting with the lowest power, and working to the highest. Once you have rotated the revolving turret and cleaned each lens, you will use a dry wipe and start over but this time without any lens cleaning solution.

The purpose is to clean off any excess fluid.  Once this is finished, you will begin cleaning the condenser illuminator optic using a wipe with lens cleaning solution. Once finished, you will use a dry wipe to remove any remaining residue. Repeat the same procedure for the top eyepiece lens above the turret tube.  Use your alcohol pads to clean on or around the base, arm, and upper tube. When finished make sure you cover your microscope in its own proper covering.

Cleaning a Digital Microscope or a USB Microscope

These important pieces of equipment will use the same cleaning supplies and will be cleaned using the same techniques. There are different types of digital and USB microscopes, so you will need to take this into consideration. The only word of caution would be not using excessive amounts of lens cleaning solution, or extremely wet alcohol pads when cleaning.

Microscope care begins with proper handling, cleaning, and making sure your equipment is stored properly. Compound Microscopes give better readings of accurate information when they are cleaned properly, and this also pertains to USB and digital microscopes as well. Proper care and handling will ensure you have the finest equipment for all your microscopic needs.

Posted on

How to Prepare a Microscope Slide

Microscope slides are prepared depending on the purpose they are going to be used for, as well as the outcome you are striving to achieve. They have to be cleaned before use. When you are cleaning these types of slides, you are expected to scrub your hand with cotton-soaked ethanol. The slide must then be cleaned with cotton gauze that has been saturated in 70% alcohol. It has to be meticulously cleaned and then air dried, and then the sample should be placed on it. If the slide is not cleaned correctly, then false positive results may be the end result and you would be called upon to re-do the process.

You can prepare the slide in three different ways. These are inclusive of the dry mount, the wet mount, as well as the prepared mount. The dry mount usually holds such things as hair, feather, pollen and grains. Such things as semen, saliva, urine and blood are usually placed on the wet mount. The prepared mount would normally have more complex structures of sample.

With the dry mount, the sample is positioned on the slide and then a cover slip is positioned right over it. There are times when the sample has to be heated. When this is necessary, the slide is briefly heated over a Bunsen burner. The cover lid is pushed down with the thumb so that the sample can be correctly administered.

For the wet mount, the sample is placed in water or some other liquid conductor and then is it observed under a microscope. A cover lid is placed on the sample to secure the liquid from spillage.

When there is a prepared mount, an intricate structure is cut into thin segments using a microtome. The specimen is then stained, rehydrated and treated with varying types of substances. The sample is afterwards securely attached and then it is examined using the microscope.

In order to get a clear resolution, mounting media has to be applied on the sample before it is covered. The mounting media should not come in contact with the sample. Hoyer’s mounting media and glycerol jelly are the most commonly used when studying sample under a microscope. Just a few droplets are placed on the sample, and then a cover slip is placed over it. The slide is placed over the hole in the microscope and then the light is appropriately adjusted. These are the basic steps of how to prepare a microscope slide.

Posted on

5 Things To Look At Under A Microscope

Life’s beauty is in it’s details, escpecially when we examine it down to microscopic detail. If you get a microscope and start looking at everyday items under it, you will welcome an excellent source of entertainment. All that appears mundane to the eye emerges as entirely different under the microscope and you will suddenly find yourself in an intensely bizarre world. So let’s take you on a brief rollercoaster ride and show you what some of those everyday items look like under a microscope!

5. Needle & Thread

Have you ever tried getting the end of a thread through a needle? Good lord, it just drains out all your energy! You try holding the needle as stable as possible and still the thread ends up popping up on the wrong side. But when seen through a microscope, the needle looks like a beautiful long spatula with a big hole at the top and the thread looks more like a thick rope. I wonder if I should thread my needles under a microscope from now!

4. Snowflakes

Now who doesn’t love snow! All that fun around snowmen and skiing is only possible through snowy winters. But wait, as dazzling as the snow feels, the individual snowflakes are even more fascinating. Under a microscope, snowflakes take mind-blowing shapes. Every flake is so different in shape from the other that it is very hard to believe they are a product of natural processes.

 

3. Dust

ordinary_everyday_items_look_so_cool_under_a_microscope_640_09

This is definitely going to surprise you but trust us, when seen up close through a microscope, dust looks like a cool pattern of colorful objects. No matter how much you hate dust, you are going to love its magnified form!

 

2. Orange Juice

As yummy as a glass of orange juice is, it appears even more spectacular under a microscope. All that is orange to the eye is a beautiful web of colorful blocks to the microscope. Upon closer look you see a variety of yellows and blues and greens in your glass and wonder why those colors do not show up in your glass. But really, as delicious as the nature has made orange juice, it hasn’t shied away from giving it a fancy look under the microscope!

 

1. Tip of a Butterfly Tongue

None of us can deny the beauty of a butterfly’s wings and the rainbow of colors they carry but hold on, there is something even more colorful on a butterfly. Well, believe it or not, it is the butterfly’s tongue! When seen under a microscope, the tip of a butterfly’s tongue looks like a brightly colored strip with hues so captivating that you’ll almost forget the splendor of the insect’s wings.

 

So what are those things that you’ll want to see under a microscope? We’ll be very happy to know!