A microscope magnifies small objects. It provides us the means to observer extremely small things that are not visibile to the naked eye.
The name “microscope” was coined by Giovanni Faber a German botanist.
Antonie van Leeuwenhoek is credited with the discovery of microorganisms. He used a simple microscope.
Robert Hooke is credited with discovering plant cells. Infact he coined the term “cells”. He used a compound microscope.
Leeuwenhoek’s simple microscope https://ucmp.berkeley.edu/history/leeuwen/leeuwmicrosm.jpg
“my work, which I’ve done for a long time, was not pursued in order to gain the praise I now enjoy, but chiefly from a craving after knowledge, which I notice resides in me more than in most other men. And therewithal, whenever I found out anything remarkable, I have thought it my duty to put down my discovery on paper, so that all ingenious people might be informed thereof.”
Antony van Leeuwenhoek. Letter of June 12, 1716
How do we convert a webcam into a microscope?
By inverting the lens.
Then building a stage.
Mounting the camera.
We make major assumptions here, because the maths in calculating numerous parameters in a compound lens is substantially involved. Ideally we should be doing the maths first and the making subsequently, in conformation to the maths. But for now, the proof of pudding will be in the making.
Our process will be
- Opening the webcam
- Modifying the internal lens mount to accept an inverted lens
- Designing and building a simple stage
- Mounting the camera
- Creating a focus method
- Viewing specimen of interest
- One or more Challenges for the maker groups
Here is one such webcam scope
Some images from the above microscope