Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Chromosomes under the Microscope

A chromosome is a DNA molecule with part or all of the genetic material of an organism. Chromosomes are only visible under a light microscope when the cell is undergoing the metaphase of cell division. During metaphase, when a chromosome is in its most condensed state, the X-shape structure is called a metaphase chromosome.

The images below were captured under the Zeiss Primostar microscope.

Zeiss Primostar microscope images of chromosomes captured at 100x.
Chromosomes captured under the Zeiss Primostar microscope at 100x.

Zeiss Primostar microscope image of chromosomes captured at 400x.
Chromosomes captured under the Zeiss Primostar microscope at 400x.

Contact Microscope World with questions regarding microscopes and different applications.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Plant Cell Images from Student Microscope

The plant cell microscopy images below were captured with the Richter Optica UX-1 student microscope using Plan Achromat objective lenses and the high definition HD camera with monitor.

Microscopy image of Monocot captured under a student microscope by Microscope World.
Monocot captured under the student microscope.

Plant cells captured using the microscope HD camera with monitor.

Contact Microscope World with questions regarding microscopes or microscopy cameras.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Muscle under the Microscope

The human body has 3 types of muscle in it:
  • Skeletal muscle
  • Smooth muscle
  • Cardiac muscle
Skeletal muscle covers the skeleton and gives the body shape. Skeletal muscle is the type of muscle that is most often thought of when the term "muscle" is used.

Muscle under the microscope captured with a PAXcam microscope camera.
Skeletal muscle under the microscope captured with a PAX-cam microscope camera.

Microscopy image of smooth muscle.Smooth muscle (shown at left) is found in walls of hollow organs such as the stomach. Smooth muscle tissue tends to demonstrate greater elasticity than other muscles. It is also found in the urinary tract and digestive tract.

Cardiac muscle is only found in the heart and it is different from the other muscles in the body because it does not get tired. Learn more about the human cardiac muscle here.

Microscopy image of human heart captured at 400x magnification.
Human cardiac muscle captured under the RB30 microscope with a 5mp microscope camera.

Each of the 3 types of muscles in the human body plays an important function in every day life. To learn more about healthy muscles and the roles they play in the human body visit NIH here.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Marmalade Hoverfly under the Microscope Lens

Harald K. Andersen of Steinberg, Norway captured the image below of a marmalade hoverfly. His setup included using the Mitutoyo M Plan Apo 5x Objective lens, connected to his Canon EOS 7D camera.

The marmalade hoverfly (Episyrphus balteatus) is a relatively small hoverfly of the Syrphidae family, widespread through the Palaearctic region which covers Europe, North Asia and North Africa. The upper side of the abdomen is patterned with orange and black bands. These insects often form dense migratory swarms, which may cause panic among people for their resemblance to wasps.

Harald captured this image using a 100 image stack (Canon EF 70-200 f/2.8).

Mitutoyo lens on Canon EOS 7D Camera
Mitutoyo M Plan Apo 5x Objective on Canon EOS 7D

Microscopy image setup for photography
Harald K. Andersen's studio

Harald K. Andersen image of marmalade hoverfly in 100 image stack.
Marmalade hoverfly courtesy of Harald K. Andersen (100 image stack)

Contact Microscope World with questions regarding objective lenses.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Microscope Ergonomic Work Station

A proper ergonomic work station when using your microscope can reduce the risk of occupational injuries. UCLA Ergonomics suggests the following tips to maintain a safer environment when using microscopes:
  • Sit in the proper position keeping your back straight and your shoulders back. Distribute your body weight evenly on both hips, and keep your feet flat on the floor.
  • Arrange your work space so that it is close to you.
  • Ensure there is proper padding if leaning on hard surfaces.
  • Work with elbows in close proximity to the body.
  • Work with wrists in a straight and neutral position.
  • Adjust and/or elevate your chair, workbench, or microscope as needed to maintain an upright head position.
  • Adjust microscope eyepieces or mount the microscope on a 30° stand for easier viewing.
  • Repair and clean microscopes regularly. Learn how to clean lenses here.
  • If possible, spread microscope work throughout the day and between several people. 
  • Schedule works breaks. Every 15 minutes, close your eyes or focus on something in the distance. Every 30 minutes get up to stretch and move.
Microscopy is a demanding and rewarding field to work in. By maintaining an ergonomic work space you can ensure years of healthy and pain-free work.

"Tips for Microscopy." Laboratory Ergonomics. Ergonomics.ucla.edu, 2012. Web. 27 June 2017.
"Posture for a Healthy Back." Articles. Health. Clevelandclinic.org, 2017. Web. 27 June 2017.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Persimmon Endosperm

Endosperm is a tissue produced inside seeds following fertilization in most flowering plants. It surrounds the embryo and provides nutrition in the form of starch, though it can also contain oils and protein. This can make endosperm a good source of nutrition in the human diet. The image below is of a persimmon endosperm captured under the microscope using the Lumenera Infinty 2-1 color microscopy camera.

Persimmon endosperm captured under the microscope with Infinity 2-1 microscopy camera.
Persimmon Endosperm under the Microscope captured with Infinity 2-1 Camera

Contact Microscope World with questions regarding microscopes or microscopy cameras.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Microscope Magnification versus Resolution

In microscopy there are two concepts that many people often think of as a single concept, but they are very different. These two concepts are magnification and resolution. From a technical perspective, resolution is a quantified concept that is defined by the numerical aperture (NA) rating of the objective lenses of the microscope. Numerical Aperture is a number that expresses the ability of a lens to resolve fine detail in an object being observed. Magnification is simply how much an image is enlarged.

Below are two images of the same small printed part with text on it. The first image was captured using a stereo microscope with a lens that has NA of 0.10. This image was captured at 90x. Notice in the image below captured with the stereo microscope it is very hard to even read any of the printed text on the circuit. It should also be noted that it took nearly two hours to capture an image of this quality.

Image of a circuit captured under a stereo microscope at 90x magnification.
Stereo Microscope image captured at 90x, NA 0.10

The next image was captured using a metallurgical microscope with a lens that has NA of 0.30 and a magnification of 100x. This image took a few minutes to capture. The magnifications of the two captured images are similar however, notice how much easier it is to read the printed letters in the image that was captured with the metallurgical microscope. That ability is due to better resolution, which was obtained because of a higher numerical aperture of the lens used.

Metallurgical microscope image of a circuit captured at 100x magnification showing high quality resolution.
Metallurgical Microscope image captured at 100x, NA 0.30

Contact Microscope World with questions regarding NA, resolution, magnification or any other microscopy related questions.