What Are The Latest Microscope Inventions And Who Are Their Inventors?


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In the past century, the most recent microscope inventions have been the ultramicroscope by Richard Zsigmondy, the phase contrast microscope by Frits Zernike, the electron microscope by Ernst Ruska and the scanning tunneling microscope by Gerd Binnog and Heinrich Rohrer.

As time has passed and technology has improved, these microscopes have become more and more advanced. The first microscope was invented as far back as 1000 AD and when comparing this most basic form of the equipment with the scanning tunneling microscope, it is possible to see how far they have come.

  • The Ultramicroscope
The ultramicroscope, invented in 1903, involved a system of illuminations that made it possible to view tiny particles. Based on light scattering, the ultramicroscope made it possible for scientists to view particles smaller than they ever could before. Typically, they have been used for viewing aerosols and colloids.

  • The Phase Contrast Microscope
This was the first microscope to make it possible to study the cell cycle as it did not require staining in order to view the slide. Small phase shifts in the light pass through a transparent specimen and are converted into contrast or amplitude changes in the image.

  • The Electron Microscope
One of the most important microscope inventions, the electron microscope uses a particle beam of electrons to illuminate the specimen and produce a magnified image. They have a much higher resolving power than older optical microscopes and can achieve a much better resolution.

  • The Scanning Tunneling Microscope
Developed in 1981, the scanning tunneling microscope is used to view surfaces at the subatomic level. The microscope is based on the concept of quantum tunneling. Using a scanning tunneling microscope can be a difficult process as it requires a very clean and stable surface, sharp tips, sophisticated electronics and excellent vibration controls.

Microscope inventions have developed dramatically over the past 1000 years, particularly in the last century. These four microscopes are some of the most recent inventions that have contributed towards modern science.

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