Light microscopes reveal the structures of living cells and tissues, according to HowStuffWorks.com. Using light microscopes, scientists have greatly increased human knowledge in the biomedical science fields. Even as they make strides in available technology, the light microscope continues to provide a powerful tool for scientists.Know More
The use of light microscopes goes beyond biological samples. They ALSO reveal the structure of rocks and other nonliving substances. In the electronics industry, a light microscope becomes a tool for inspection of semiconductors for quality assurance.
However, the light microscope is not without limitations. Thicker samples, which do not allow light to pass through them, are not visible under the light microscope. In addition, even if a light microscope includes perfect illumination and a perfect lens, objects smaller than half the wavelength of light are indistinguishable. Using white light, with an average wavelength of 0.55 micrometers requires samples larger than 0.275 micrometers. Lines closer than this merge into a single line. Round objects with diameters smaller than this become a blur at best, according to About.com. Using white light, the magnification is limited to 1250x. Blue light with its shorter wavelength allows the light microscope to provide magnifications up to 5000x. The electron microscope, while not a light microscope, allows the scientist to view objects not visible through the ordinary light microscope.Learn More
The microscope is a device used to view very small objects by magnifying the image. This can be done through optical and non-optical means.Full Answer >
A diaphragm on a microscope is the piece that enables the user to adjust the amount of light that is focused under the specimen being observed. A diaphragm is typically found on higher-power microscopes versus less expensive or toy models.Full Answer >
Parfocal microscopes maintain focus throughout real-time magnification changes. These microscopes also remain focused when the user rotates objectives. This capability is a function of the lens and is a particularly popular feature on field microscopes. Parfocal lenses also appear on high quality digital cameras.Full Answer >
There are two lenses on the compound microscope, the ocular lens and the objective lens. The ocular lens is the lens a person looks into. The objective lens is the lens closest to the specimen.Full Answer >