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Facts You May Not Know about Microscopes

Posted by on 8/7/2019

Used as an instrument to enlarge small objects, microscopes, or versions of them, have been used for thousands of years. In fact, there’s evidence dating back 4,000 years to objects resembling current day lenses.  Here at Waveroom Plus, we provide state-of-art technology to our customers.  However, we love knowing the history behind these products!  Here are some fun facts about the microscope that you may, or may not, have known.


·        In 700 BCE the “Nimrud lens,” or rock crystal with a convex shape is believed to have been used as a magnifying lens.

·        During the year of 167 BCE, there is record of the Chinese culture utilizing the first simple microscope technology.  The microscope was made of a lens and a water-filled tube.

·        The 13th century brought an increase to the use of eyeglasses, basically a single lens magnifier for individuals.

·        Hans Martens and Zacharias Janssen invented the compound microscope in 1590.

·        However, it was not until 1619 that Willem Boreel recorded the description of the invention.

·        In 1624 Galileo improved the microscope and presented it to Prince Federico Cesi.

·        1625 brought forth the first recorded observations under the compound microscope.

·        1625 also brought forth the official term “microscope” for the invention.

·        In 1674, Anton van Leeuwenhoek improved on a simple microscope for viewing biological specimens.

·        After a lull of excitement, in 1825, Joseph Jackson Lister developed combined lenses.

·        In 1846 microscopes began to be mass-produced.

·        The first practical binocular microscope was created sometime during the 1850s at Tulane University.

·        In 1863 further advancements were made with the invention of the metallurgical microscope to observe the structure of meteorites.

·        1931 brought about the invention of the first electron microscope.

·        1936 brought about the invention of the first field emission microscope.

·        1951 gave us the field ion microscope, which was the first to see atoms.

·        1953 pushed new limits with the invention of the phase-contrast microscope

·        In 1957, Marvin Minsky of MIT invented the confocal microscope, a predecessor to today’s confocal laser scanning microscope.

·        In 1967 Erwin Muller added time-of-flight, making the first atom probe that allowed the chemical identification of individual atoms.

·        1981 brought us the scanning tunneling microscope.

·        1986 gave the world the Atomic force microscope.

·        Lastly, in 1991, the Kelvin probe force microscope was invented.


Even though technology is continuously evolving, we thought we’d stop here. For all of your microscope and magnifier needs, visit Waveroom Plus.  Providing our customers with a variety of products for the electronics manufacturing industry since 1990, we pride ourselves on customer satisfaction.  For more information on the variety of solutions, we can provide your business, give our team a call at 603.437.4651.




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