Microscopes are used in a variety of scientific fields for many different reasons.  Some microscopes are better suited for biological applications, while others are better used for a classroom or personal use.

You may already be familiar with optical microscopes.  This type of microscope magnifies specimens through the use of specialized lenses and visible light.  Optical microscopes can be divided into three main categories.

  • Compound Microscopes
    1. This microscope works by illuminating the slide from underneath with a light bulb. The specimen placed on the slide is magnified by a series of lenses: one near the slide (known as the objective lens), and one near the top (known as the eyepiece). This creates a two-dimensional image that the viewer can adjust.
    2. Compound microscopes are limited to a maximum magnification of roughly 2,000 times the specimen’s size.
    3. Theoretically, these microscopes can magnify at a higher level, the human eye and brain is not capable of processing such information.
    4. Schools and Educational Facilities usually use compound microscopes. 
  • Stereo Microscopes
    1. The main purpose of this microscope is to produce a three-dimensional image.
    2. Has two (2) eyepieces instead of one (1). Comes in handy for three-dimensional imaging.
    3. The specimen being observed is usually lit from above, rather than underneath. 
    4. Ideal for dissection, inspection, and circuit board work.
    5. Due to their low magnification, you cannot see individual cells.
    6. Fairly simple to use, making them great for amateur scientists and professionals.
  • Confocal Microscopes
    1. Instead of using a visible light source, Confocal Microscopes use a laser.
    2. The laser scans the specimen or sample with the help of a few scanning mirrors, in which the image is sent to a computer to display on its screen.
    3. No eyepieces are needed.
    4. Very costly and mostly used by research scientists and molecular biologists.

As a leader in Scientific Equipment Repair and Medical Equipment Calibrations, Scientific Instrument Center works with many corporations, universities, and hospitals providing the highest level of laboratory services. Whether we are providing biosafety cabinet calibration or medical equipment calibration, we keep your equipment performing to industry codes and regulations. Feel free to contact us at (614) 771-4700