The microscope was invented by Dutch spectacle makers, Hans Lippershey and his son, Zaccharias Janssen while experimenting with a variety of lenses in the late 1590s. This father and son team placed several lenses into a tube and discovered that it can magnify an object by about nine times more than its normal size. While their invention was beyond the potential of a magnifying glass, its produced image was unclear and blurry. The first microscope was recognized as a pioneering product rather than a scientific apparatus.
Galileo Galilei became aware of this experiment and made a much better instrument. However, it was Anthony Leeuwenhoek, who learned how to make more polished lenses and became the first man to made use of a real microscope. His achievement produced greater magnification of up to 270 times, which brought about new scientific discoveries and inspired many people to a whole new world of things they never imagined perceiving.
Parts of a Microscope:
Eyepiece lens - Also called ocular is the lens at the top where you look through, its standard magnification is typically 10-15 times
Tube - This holds the eyepiece in position on top of the objective lens.
Arm - It gives support to the tube and connects it to the base.
Base - It supports the whole microscope and is located at the bottom.
Illuminator or Mirror - This part is the light source of a microscope and found at the base of the stage. This gives steady light when working on a specimen on the stage.
Stage - This part features a flat platform where you can place the specimen slides. Stage clips are used to hold the slide in place. A mechanical stage can be adjusted to move left and right, and up and down by the use of two different knobs.
Turret or the Revolving Nosepiece - Two or more objective lenses are in this part. These objective lenses can be rotated to change power.
Objective lenses - Generally, a microscope contains three to four objective lens, where the shortest lens is the lowest magnifying power and the longest one is the highest magnifying power. The greater powered lens is made retractable so that it can push in if it hits a slide so as to secure the lens and the slide.
Rack Stop - The rack stop keeps users from breaking the lens or slide by preventing them to adjust the lens too low. Factories set this and should only be adjusted when using very thin slides.
Condenser Lens - It is designed to collect, control and concentrate light on to the specimen. They can render a more visible image at maximum power.
Diaphragm or Iris - The diaphragm is used to vary the intensity and size of the light that is focused to the slide.
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