Microscopy refers to an observation of microscopic samples using technology that allows a magnified image. The naked human eye cannot view such objects but research into these is essential for a number of reasons so, a range of techniques have been developed to help researchers understand diminutive substances. Microscopy plays a significant role in the development of the branch of biology called microbiology.
Microscopy can be further branched into three main streams depending on the technique used.
The most popular and easy-to-use technique is optical microscopy. This method relies on the use of light which is reflected off the surface of passed through it to magnify the image. The light that is reflected off it passed through it is then viewed through multiple or single lenses. With current technology, the magnified image can be aught as a photograph and can also be transferred to be viewed on a computer. Optical microscopy further includes bright and dark field, phase contrast, deconvolution, oblique illumination and many more. In certain situation, however, this is not a suitable method. It works well only with dark samples and the good refractors. In samples that do not meet the requirements, other methods are used.
The electron microscope makes use of an electron beam to produce an enlarged image. The wavelength of this beam is quite small and therefore produces an excellent resolution. The high resolution makes it possible to magnify clearly very small specimens that cannot be viewed with a light microscope in as much detail or clarity. Electron microscopy further branches into scanning electron microscopy and transmission electron microscopy. The scanning electron microscopy works much like a stereo light microscope while the transmission electron microscope is similar to compound might microscopes.
Scanning probe microscopy
The methods mentioned above all are means of “looking at” the microscopic makeup of the sample. This method, on the other hand, enables researchers to “feel” the sample instead. The image is created on a computer screen as the scanning probe probes the surface. The method uses a very highly pointed conducting tip and applies a voltage. In this way, it is possible to identify the elevation of the surface and thereby produce an X-ray. There are many types of scanning probe microscopes meant to give different levels of details and accuracy.
Some microscopes used in microscopy are listed below:
- Phase-contrast microscopes
- Darkfield microscope
- Brightfield microscopes
- Confocal microscopes
- Two-photon microscopes
- Electron microscopes
- Scanning probe microscope
Such analytic microscopy is conducted in a highly equipped analytical microscopy lab like MicroVision Laboratories Inc. These labs are equipped for the sole purpose of microscopy so they are ideal for such tests. Most of these provide services ranging from coal ash microscopic analysis to elemental mapping. These service providers tailor their approach to the needs of specific clients. Industries including medical, environmental, and textile make use of these services in their industrial procedures.
Microscopy is a very important procedure in many industries and microbiology forms a large part of the research, and analytic microscopy labs play a significant role in this.