Monday, May 20, 2013

Types of Microscopy

Almost everyone at some point in time has operated a compound microscope in the classroom to examine specimens and slides. Some children who opt for the home school route even have compound microscopes of their own. It is hard to argue the fact that microscopes are fundamental observation tools for earth science, biology, and other academic field such as chemistry  Microscopes allow us to observe small details about specimens that would not be visible to the naked eye. The most commonly used forms of microscopy are electron microscopy, optical microscopy, and scanning probe microscopy.

Electron Microscope
Electron Microscopy requires a different variation of light and can achieve up to 10,000,000 X magnification level. They have revolutionized microscopy and our viewing of the nature around us.

Optical Microscopy
The most widely used form of microscopy and the beginning tool for observing the natural world. Optical microscopy is still in wide use today and has allowed us to observe bacteria and identify illnesses.

Scanning Probe Microscopy
Developed in the late 1980's this method is based on quantum mechanics. It is the highest level of microscopy even making single atoms visible.

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