Theoretical Importance Of Light Microscope

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Introduction The English Scientist, Robert Hooke (1635-1703), was the first to publish work based upon the use of an optical microscope, in 1665. He was the first to use the word “cell” in the biological context. Hooke used a compound microscope, having two lenses, whereas Antoni Van Leeuwenhoek, a Dutch cloth merchant and Amateur Scientist, used only a single glass lens in his simple microscope, some 10 years or so later. Leeuwenhoek made observations on bacteria, plants, blood cells and minerals and is generally considered to have made a greater contribution to our understanding of the microscopical world than Hooke. Around 1870, Ernst Abbe formulated his famous sine theory for the resolving power of the light microscope, which demonstrates the importance of the numerical aperture of the lenses used and the wavelength of light. The higher the numerical aperture and the shorter the wavelength, the better the resolving power. By 1900, the theoretical principles of the microscope were well understood and the microscope had become a well-established research tool for professional Scientists. Fig 1.1

Light microscope

Light microscope uses the properties of light to produce an enlarged image. It is the simplest type of microscope. Based on the simplicity of the microscope, it is categorized into two. They are: -
1) Simple microscope
2) Compound

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