Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Current Event: Quantum Biology could open up path for Solar Technology

Students and researchers from the University of Chicago have recently created a synthetic compound that is similar to quantum dynamics observed in photosynthesis. This may lead to further advances in solar energy technology. Engineering quantum effects into synthesis light devices is possible in the future.

Chicago University researchers have created a small molecule that support long lived quantum coherences. 

  • Coherences are the macroscopically observable behavior of quantum super-positions. 
  • Superpositions are quantum mechanical concept where a single particle, such as an electron, occupies more than one state
  • Photosynthetic Antennae are proteins that organize chlorophyll 

Research Results/ Summary: 
Improved efficiency in the transferring of energy from the parts of the cell that convert directly from solar energy to chemical energy. New results show that this new form of energy can be directly applied to man-made compound(s).

Monday, April 22, 2013

OMAX MicroscopeNet Facebook Promotion

We at MicroscopeNet are hosting our first ever Facebook promotion where you can enter for your chance to win a microscope just by "liking" our Facebook page!

Here's how to enter to win:
Step 1: Like Microscopenet on Facebook, then go to "Enter To Win" tab.
Step 2: Once you have completed an Enter Form, then you must submit your Entry Form at our Facebook page.
Step 3: Share this event with your friends, and you can get 1 bonus entry every time a friend enters!  

If you are the lucky winner you will have the choice of one of our two most popular models below. No return for cash value. You are entitled to our 5 year warranty on the microscope you win. Free UPS ground shipping for continental US and Canadian address. AK,HI, and where UPS Ground does not reach, and international winner will have to pay for the extra shipping fee.

You can choose from the:

1) Binocular Stereo Microscope with Dual LED Lights
  • Plug and see, no special knowledge needed
  • High quality optical glass elements
  • Three magnification levels: 20x, 40x & 80x
  • 45°inclined 360°rotatable binocular head
  • Dual LED lights (upper and lower)
  • LED light lifetime: 100,000 hours
  • Long working distance
  • Sharp stereo erect images over a wide field view
  • Diopter adjustment on left ocular-tube
  • Adjustable inter-pupillary distance
  • 90°rotational objective
  • Locked-in eyepieces
  • Tool-free focus knob tension adjustment
  • Metal stand and framework

2) Compound Binocular Biological Microscope with Replaceable LED Light
  • 8 levels of magnification: 40X-80X-100X-200X-400X-800X-1000X-2000X
  • Replaceable 3W LED transmitted light with adjustable intensity
  • 45 degree inclined 360 degree swiveling binocular viewing head
  • Large double layer mechanical stage with NA1.25 Abbe condenser & iris diaphragm
  • Coaxial coarse & fine focus knobs with tension control

Friday, April 19, 2013

Illumination Types for Microscopes

  • Tungsten – the least expensive method, and the most common on low-end scopes, tungsten illuminators use standard incandescent light bulbs. They are relatively bright, but they produce a yellowish light and considerable heat. In particular as the light is dimmed, it shifts further toward orange. This warm color balance can obscure the true colors of specimens. The heat produced by the incandescent bulb may kill live specimens and quickly dries out temporary wet mounts made with water. Lamp life is relatively short.

  • Fluorescent – costs a bit more than tungsten, and was quite popular before the advent of LED illuminators. Fluorescent illuminators provide bright light that appears white to the human eye, but is actually made up of several different discrete colors that are mixed to appear white. Accordingly, color rendition can differ significantly from the true color rendition provided by daylight. Fluorescent bulbs emit much less heat than incandescent bulbs, and so are well suited to observing live specimens. Some fluorescent illuminators are battery-powered, but most use AC power. Lamp life is relatively long.

  • LED – priced about the same as fluorescent illuminators, LED illuminators have become very popular, largely replacing fluorescent illuminators. LED illuminators have the same color-rendition problems as fluorescent illuminators, but are otherwise ideal for many purposes. LED illuminators draw very little power and emit essentially no heat. Their low power draw means they’re the best choice for a battery-powered microscope, and are ideally suited for portable microscopes that can be used in the field. Lamp life is essentially unlimited.

  • Quartz-halogen – the most expensive type of illuminators  and the one preferred by most scientists. They provide a brilliant white light needed for work at high magnification that reveals the true colors of specimens. Unfortunately, quartz-halogen lamps also produce more heat than any other type of illuminators  Their high power draw means they are AC-only. Lamp life is relatively short.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Science Trends for 2013: Microbiomes

This past year, science research has seen an increase in focus on human genome and diseases and earth's microbiomes. 

At the past AGBT convention, Kjersti Aagaard gave an amazing presentation on the human placentia. Her group claims that this is not a sterile organ and that it harbors a  non-pathogenic commensal microbiome which was the most similar to the oral cavity microbiome. Kjersti concludes that she believes that the fetus is not sterile and that the microbiome may be related to the immune tolerance of neonates. 

Jonas Korlach from PBS and Stephan Schuster from Penn State University also touched on tools for microbial sequencing at the convention. They discussed a new assembly approach  and sequencing environmental microbes. He stressed that much of earth's microbiome remains undefined and unidentified. 

This year and the next years to come will have more and more scientists leading extensive research on microbiome identification and advanced human microbiome projects. 

Monday, April 15, 2013

Taking Images with Your Microscope

  Many of our microscopes sold come equipped with a digital camera and software compatible with most PC's out on today's market. With that being said, it is probably sure to say that at some point using your microscope you will want to take photos and upload them onto your computer. 

  Images onto your PC could be achieved with a stand alone digital camera and stand, a microscope digital camera, a video camera, or a digital microscope. If you are savvy with a professional digital camera you could purchase a trinocular port and use your existing digital camera and adapter. Just insert your trinocular port, remove the eyepiece lens, and insert the adapter into the open tube. 

  If your microscope has a digital camera you will need to "C-mount" adapter. The "C-mount" needs to be dropped into the trinocular port on your microscope and the threads must stick out. The threads will mate with the adapter on the camera. Typically, the "C-mount" will have a lens that will allow for you to see 10X the eyepieces when viewing the images from the camera.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Tech Trends 2013

Here is a list of the Top Tech Trends for 2013:

  1. Apps Become More Visible
  2. Micro-Networks Rise
  3. The Tablet Tipping Point
  4. The Emergence of Robotic Handicraft
  5. Data Ecology Becomes More Diverse
  6. Human/Computer Interaction Becomes Personalized
  7. Virtual Manufacturing
  8. More Tech-Distruption By Nature

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Microscope Maintenance

Routine optical and mechanical maintenance of compound microscopes can ensure that your microscope works well for many years to come. Periodic microscope servicing by a qualified microscope technician is recommended. Compound microscopes should generally be serviced after about 200 hours of use. For most schools, this would be about every three years, possibly more frequent if the microscope is used multiple times each day.

Handling and Storage

Most microscope problems occur as a result of mishandling. When carrying the microscope, always hold it by the base and the metal support arm. If you will be traveling with your microscope frequently from one location to another you might consider purchasing a microscope carrying case. Aluminum cases work best for protecting your microscope in case it falls or tumbles while in transport.

When the microscope is not in use keep it covered with the dust cover. This alone will extend the life of your microscope. Even if the microscope is stored within a cabinet, you should still cover it with the dust cover. Do not store a microscope without any eyepieces, even if it is covered. This can allow dust to collect within the eye tubes, which can be difficult to clean. If the microscope eyepieces must be removed, simply cover the tubes with caps or a plastic bag with a rubber band around the eye tube.
Try to always store your microscope in a cool, dry place. 

Mechanical Maintenance

Each microscope should come with a user's manual. If it did not with a manual in the packaging you can download the manual on the company website. Always consult your user's manual before making any adjustments to your microscope. Avoid using excessive force when performing any maintenance on your microscope. This can damage metal parts in the microscope or strip the parts of their binding. 

Microscope Diagram Nose piece Adjustment

The microscope nose piece can sometimes become loose. Generally there is an adjustment mechanism on the nose piece. A simple loosening or tightening of the slot-headed screw in the middle of the nose piece should generally resolve this problem. Check your microscope's manual for complete instructions on how to adjust it.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Cleaning Your Microscope

Caring for your microscope is essential to keep all the components working smoothly and maintaining the cleanliness and appearance of your microscope will help ensure clear visibility when looking through your eyepiece. 

It is best to only clean the eyepiece when needed. Use the proper cleaning materials which can be purchased on our website under the accessories category or from another independent retailer. If your eyepiece needs cleaning you can dip your cloth into an alcohol solution to remove stubborn spots.

The eyepiece and objective lens can obtain build up easily from use. If your objective lens is also dirty you can clean it with lens paper dipped into a diluted ammonia solution. Place a few drops of ammonia into about 1/2 cup of water. 

To ensure you will not scratch your eyepiece(s) or lenses refrain from using anything other than a special lens cleaning cloth or tissue. Do not use your finger nails to try to remove any spots or debris.
Click here to browse our selection of cleaning tissue. 

Friday, April 5, 2013

Trinocular Zoom Stereo Microscopes

Shop by Price

Trinocular Zoom Stereo Microscopes are amazingly useful for lab research and hobbyists alike. With the third tube in place, you can easily hook up with the usb camera to your TV or PC monitor. 
No mather what you're inspecting for, coin, rocks, or gems our selection of trinocular stereo microscopes won't disappoint. Stereo Microscopes are practical for all levels of observations.  They are a delight for gemologists, jewelers, collectors, and even hobbyists.

We recommend our Trinocular Zoom Stereo Microscope with 8W Fluorescent Ring Light and 9.0 MP Camera on sale now for $725.99! It's great for larger specimens because it comes with a table stand and can easily be connected to your laptop for still and live image recording. 

Product Features Include:

  • High quality optical glass elements
  • 2 pairs of widefield eyepieces (10X and 20X)
  • 0.5X auxiliary objective lens provides larger field of view and longer working distance
  • 8W fluorescen ring light provides shadowless illumination
  • 9.0 MP digital camera

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

How to Focus a Microscope

Focusing your microscope is the key to getting the clear image quality you expect out of your microscope. When first looking at a specimen, the item will almost always never be focused. Learning how to focus your microscope is the essential step to assure proper observations and results. 

Here a five easy steps for focusing your microscope:
1. Place prepared slide underneath the viewing tray of the microscope and secure with clips 

2. Look through your eyepiece and determine if you can see the specimen. The specimen may be fuzzy and/or unrecognizable.

3. Turn the coarse focus knob slowly. Continue turning the coarse focus knob until the specimen becomes recognizable.

4. Next slowly turn the fine focus knob until the image becomes sharper and clear. At this point small details about the the specimen should be crystal clear. 

5. Adjust the diaphragm of the microscope to ensure the entire specimen is in your peripheral view. 

Monday, April 1, 2013

Featured Product: Student Microscope 40X-2000X Lab Binocular Biological Compound Microscope

A compound microscope is ideal for students majoring in bio/medical fields as well as for homeschooling and hobbyists. Compound microscopes are ideal for slide observations, which is what most students are required to examine in the classroom. Our Binocular Biological Compound Microscope is an ideal starter microscope for students and is on promotion right now for a low price of $198.99. 

This microscope is great for students because it can be easily upgraded with a digital camera, a darkfield adjustment, and slides. This microscope is easily customizable and easy to use. Compound microscopes will continue to be a crucial part of research in scientific fields. The compound microscope is still a mainstay in many fields and also is a wonderful tool for students to begin with when learning how to use these instruments in a laboratory. Their ability to provide higher magnifications and excellent resolution of a specimen makes the compound microscope an important tool for scientists and students alike.

Product features include: 

  • High quality professional optical glass elements
  • 45°inclined 360°swiveling binocular head
  • Easy to mount electronic eyepiece (digital microscope camera)
  • 8 levels of magnification: 40X-80X-100X-200X-400X-800X-1000X-2000X
  • 4 achromatic objectives 
  • 2 pairs of eyepieces: WF10X and WF20X
  • Sliding interpupillary distance adjustment
  • Ocular diopter adjustable on both eyetubes
  • Variable intensity illumination
  • Coaxial coarse and fine focus adjustment
  • Focusing knobs on both sides
  • Stage upward moving lock protects objectives and slides
  • Stain-resistant double layer mechanical stage
  • NA1.25 Abbe Condenser with iris diaphragm & filters
  • Rack and pinion adjustment condenser
  • Product GS and CE approved