DAVID PARKER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DAVID PARKER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
The optical microscope, often referred to as the "light microscope", is a type of microscope which uses visible light and a system of lenses to magnify images of small samples. Optical microscopes are the oldest design of microscope and were designed around 1600. Basic optical microscopes can be very simple, although there are many complex designs which aim to improve resolution and sample contrast. The cluster of 5 lenses at the base of the optical column are known as objective lenses and come in wide range of magnifications. The top of the optical column is used to focus the sample image into a camera for photomicrography.
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