13 Photomicrography

13.1 Optical microscopy

The microscope is a primary tool for detection, inspection, comparison and measurement of the fine detail of a subject down to near atomic level (Figure 13.1). Indeed the logo of an optical microscope is the most common icon for ‘science’. A wide range of optical (light) and electronic microscopes are in contemporary use. All rely upon a variety of photographic or electronic imaging systems for the location, capture, enhancement and storage of images for evaluation. In addition, ‘lensless’ microscopy makes use of a high resolution linear image scanner to produce a digital data file directly from a prepared slide for subsequent examination and analysis (Chambers and Preston, 1994).

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