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A microscope is a scientific instrument that makes things normally too small to see look bigger, so they can be seen better and examined correctly. People who use microscopes commonly in their jobs include doctors and scientists.
The earliest microscopes had only 1 lens and are called simple microscopes. Compound microscopes have at least 2 lenses.
In a compound microscope, the lens closer to the eye is called the eyepiece. The lens at the other end is called the objective.
Microscopes make things seem larger than they are, from 10 times larger to about 1000 times larger. This is much stronger than a magnifying glass.
Types of Microscopes
There are many different types of microscopes. The most common are compound light microscopes and electron microscopes. Compound light microscopes reflect light under the object being looked at. Light then passes through two lenses and makes the image bigger. Electron microscopes come in different types as well. Transmission electron microscopes (TEMs) fire electrons into the object being looked at, which carry information about how the object looks into a lens. This is then magnified onto a television screen. Scanning electron microscopes also fire electrons at the object, but in a single beam. These lose their power when they strike the object, and the loss of power results in something else being generated—usually an X-ray. This is read and magnified onto a screen.
- Microscopy Information Information relating to optics, techniques and specimen preparation for teachers, students, amateur scientists.
- Scanning electron microscope