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Published On: Thu, Nov 9th, 2017

Microscopes: an industry which is growing at a steady rate

The global microscope market is estimated to reach $12.7 billion no later than 2024. With so many advances happening in the industry, it goes without saying that using and owning even a cheap dissecting microscope can become one of the concerns of amateur users.

While some people tend to think that these devices are solely used in areas like forensic medicine, veterinary medicine, cytology, and a variety of other sciences somehow connected to biology and medicine, the fact of the matter is that they are becoming more and more popular with home users.

Why’s that? On the one hand, not all microscopes are made equal. Many models differ from one unit to the next in terms of size, capabilities, functionality, portability, and a variety of other factors that any prospective buyer might have to consider in relation to his or her requirements and the purpose they have in mind for the device.

What’s more, the uses of microscopes are next to endless nowadays. Typically, most models can be split up into two categories. Some are stereo microscopes, of which the magnification powers are somewhat limited, which is why they cannot be used to look at bacteria, for example. Compound microscopes are more powerful compared to their dissecting counterparts, which is even some monocular choices can be utilized for medical purposes.

Over the past decade or so, many brands have focused on designing their microscopes in such a way so that they speak to the needs of modern consumers. That’s how the USB microscope came to be. While purists argue that these small devices are not, in fact, real microscopes as they are not equipped with traditional lenses nor do they function in the same way as a typical microscope, others have gone beyond this prejudice and have started using USB and Wi-Fi capable models conveniently.

One of the reasons such products have become popular over the years is that their camera capabilities have been improved. Remember when your cell phone used to come with a 1-megapixel camera or one with even lower resolution? In case you didn’t know, the iPhone X has a camera with a 12-megapixel resolution, which is higher than that of some microscopes cameras. What this means is that the industry is slowly but surely steering toward developing highly portable devices that can be used on the go with little to no hassle.

We’ve already witnessed considerable improvements in recent years, in that nowadays there are even compound monocular microscopes that can be used with typical AA batteries, for instance. While this feature didn’t exist a decade ago, it is now an essential one for professionals like forensic examiners and veterinarians, who take their work with them everywhere they go.

Moving on to the other applications that a microscope can be utilized for, we’ll note that SMD soldering, as well as electronics repair and jewelry making,  are some of the common uses of such a device. Under such circumstances, using a compound alternative is heavily frowned upon as it does not provide any working space to speak of. This subject can be addressed by choosing a convenient and efficient dissecting microscope. As their name suggests, these devices are primarily designed for dissecting lab animals. However, the sky’s the limit when it comes to what they can actually be utilized for. Some come equipped with boom arms that the user can move in accordance with their needs. Many models in this line are fitted with handy LED bulbs that enable jewelry makers or people wanting to repair electronics to guide the light over the piece they need to examine.

In short, things are fast-paced in the microscope industry, particularly as many scientists are working toward designing incredibly portable models. In 2017, scientists have managed to make microscopes out of droplets, so many exciting things are ahead.

Author: Vlad George

About the Author

- Outside contributors to the Dispatch are always welcome to offer their unique voices, contradictory opinions or presentation of information not included on the site.

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