Tag Archives: Microscopy

The Next Push Forward in Digital Microscopy: The DVM6

If you’re looking for some new horsepower to put behind your quality assurance/control, forensic, or failure analysis the newest iteration in the DVM series is here.

The DVM6 streamlines the digital microscopy process. It has been crafted with ease of use in mind so don’t let the size intimidate you.Leica DVM6 side

Swapping out objectives and tilting the microscope can all be done with one hand while it stays in focus. Also, PlanApo corrected lenses along with the 10 megapixel camera and convenient lighting options provide a crisp, clean image on screen. All of this at more than 30 frames per second.

Thanks to the encoding on the DVM6 your results are reproducible. The illumination, position, magnification, etc. are saved for every image since all of the instrument components are sensor controlled.

Leica DVM6 user

This works in tandem with the LAS X software. With it you can use Live Image with High Dynamic Range to instantly see every detail. There are options to create single shots, stitch together larger ones, measure in 2D and 3D, and annotate. LAS X helps any user create reliable, accurate data.

Here is the feature list for the DVM6 straight from Leica:

  • Manual or motorized versions
  • All system components encoded – also for the manual version
  • Motorized versions are hybrid and can be operated manually as well for fast coarse positioning
  • Zoom module with 16:1 zoom range
  • Integrated 10-megapixel high-resolution camera
  • PlanApo-corrected Leica optics with long working distance
  • Motorized and software-controlled Iris diaphragm
  • Integrated ring light and coaxial LED illumination
  • Snap-on adapters for ring light contrasting (polarizer, diffusor, low angle illumination)
  • Backlight illumination for translucent samples
  • Tilting stand for one-handed operation, tilting from -60° to +60°
  • Focus drive with a travel range of 60 mm
  • XY stage with a travel range of 70 mm x 50 mm
  • Autofocus with two options: one shot on region of interest, or continuous autofocus
  • LAS X software

A Small Lesson in Multiphoton Microscopes

Maybe this is an excuse to show off these incredible images created with the Leica TCS SP8 MP, but why not take a look back at where this technology came from while we’re at it?

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What we’re seeing here is a 3D image with optical sectioning using a multiphoton microscope. The phenomenon behind this technology is called two-photon absorption (TPA). Essentially, two photons are absorbed at the exact same time in order to excite a molecule from one state to a higher energy electronic state. Thinking back to high school chemistry, light is given off once that molecule decays back to a lower state.

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Maria Goeppert-Mayer, the German-born American theoretical physicist, first predicted this process in her doctoral dissertation in 1931. It wasn’t until 30 years later, with the invention of the laser, that experimental verification for TPA was possible.

TPA was used as a spectroscopic tool until the 1980s. Once more developments in the field occurred, different applications were demonstrated. A few of them being photodynamic therapy, optical data storage, and imaging (obviously).

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Watt W. Webb is best known for suggesting using TPA for imaging and microscopy. In 1990 he co-invented mulitphoton microscopy along with Winfried Denk and Jim Strickler. Earlier in his career, Webb pioneered techniques in fluorescent correlation spectroscopy (FCS). The combination of TPA and FCS resulted in high resolution, high signal-to-noise images.

One of the biggest advantages to multiphoton microscopes is the use of long wavelength, low energy excitation lasers. This is less damaging to live cells and introduces fewer toxic effects. This unique attribute is responsible for the in vivo microscopy you’re seeing in these images. Developments in medical endoscopy are being explored since the potential for in vivo, in situ real-time diagnostics is there.

This concludes our small lesson in multiphoton microscopes. Class dismissed.

Explore the Hidden Worlds All Around Us

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If you’re reading this blog, chances are you’re no stranger to the ways of microscopy, but you can’t help but be amazed by the stunning textures and landscapes it can reveal.

Our latest example comes by way of the artist Pyanek and the Amazing Worlds Within Our World project. With subjects ranging from kitchen sponges to cornflakes, to soap bubbles, Pyanek takes us on a fascinating dive into more mundane objects of everyday live to explore their inner complexity.
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