Monday, 29 June 2015

Experiment: What do the cells of my body look like? Observation of cheek cells.

  • Wooden toothpick
  • Slide and cover glass
  • Dropper and water
  • Methylene Blue solution
  • Tissue paper
  • Microscope


Use a new, clean wooden toothpick to gently scrape the inside lining of your cheek.
Do not scratch forcefully.

Using the dropper, place two drops of water on a

Thursday, 25 June 2015

Skeletons from the past and present

With their glassy skeletons of often perfect geometric form and symmetry, radiolarians are among the most beautiful of all protists. They are also an ancient group, going back all the way to the early Cambrian Period. Their abundance in many rocks, their long geologic history, and their diversity through time make them important sources of information on the geologic age and structure of many deposits.

Radiolaria can range anywhere from 30 microns to 2 mm in diameter. Their skeletons tend to have arm-like extensions that resemble spikes, which are used both to increase surface area for buoyancy and to capture prey.

Friday, 19 June 2015

Adjusting the illumination

In order to obtain maximum performance from your microscope’s optics – good, clear and crisp image – it is very important that the sample is illuminated correctly. For this reason, we would like to share with you some recommendations that will help you get the best image that your microscope can give.

Light and filter.
Turn on the microscope, focus your sample and adjust the light intensity (potentiometer) to an optimal level. Then place the daylight filter (blue filter) on the filter holder. This filter is usually included in the standard package of a halogen or tungsten light microscope. This filter corrects the color temperature, so that the yellow light from the tungsten or halogen bulb becomes white. Microscopes with LED illumination sources generally do not need this filter, because the color temperature is already high.

Not using a color balancing filter
Using a color balancing filter

Field diaphragm. (For microscopes with Koehler illumination)
Place the 10X objective on the

Monday, 15 June 2015

A tiny rock flower

Let us place ourselves in the middle of the picture. To our right, a bunch of white transparent polycrystals; to our left, three light-blue colossal cubes enclosing a little white crystal. In the midst of what seems a bulling exercise, one shall bring light and

Thursday, 11 June 2015

Iris germanica, leaf of a monocotyledon plant, cross section

The leaf of the Iris Germanica is unifacial in its upper part, this means that both sides are equal. Its lower part however becomes increasingly bifacial; the opposite sides resemble each other increasingly less. Both sides of the leaf have the same number of stomata, being an indicator for unifacial leaves. A "cap" of sclerenchyma fibers closes in to the phloem vessels at the outside. It protects and gives the leave tensile and tear strength at the same time. Vascular bundles are leaf veins. The Iris germanica can be recognized as a monocot by their parallel veined leaves.

Iris is a genus of 260–300 species of flowering plants with showy flowers. It takes its name from the Greek word for a

Tuesday, 2 June 2015

Beauty is Everywhere!

It is often said that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. In Microscopy it can simple be hidden and putting together the correct configuration may uncover beautiful secrets. A small strip of plastic wrap used for food packaging will look just like a regular transparent plastic if you use standard brightfield conditions but…. What happens if you use Polarization?

Polarized light microscopes are designed for the examination of birefringent samples. A material is consider birefringent when