What is Electron Microscope and How It Works

Electron Microscope

Electron microscope is a type of microscope which is based on the same principles as the standard light microscope with the difference that it uses a beam of electrons rather than the light for imaging. But rather than the “source of light” it is the resolving power that sets electron and optical microscopes aside the most. Because electrons have much shorter wavelength than photons (light), electron microscopes achieve a much greater resolving power and resolution. At the same time, these microscopes can magnify a lot smaller specimens than the ordinary light microscopes.

History of electron microscopes dates back to the early 1930s when the German scientists Max Knoll and Ernst Ruska developed the first microscope that uses electrons rather than the protons. Although Ernst Ruska was awarded the Nobel Prize for the invention of the microscope in 1986, the world’s first electron microscope had a limited value and was not suitable for practical use. The first practical electron microscope was constructed only in 1938 at the University of Toronto. One year later, Siemens constructed the world’s first commercial transmission electron microscope (TEM). Nevertheless, all electron microscope were based on Ruska’s early 1930s prototype.

There are basically five types of electron microscope:

Electron microscope is used to create a magnified image of a variety of samples. It is an indispensable piece of equipment for biology, life sciences and research but it is also used in industry. Sponsered work is being undertaken by staff to produce a sample.