Electron Microscope

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Electron Microscope

The electron microscope has become one of the most widely utilized instruments for materials characterization. An electron microscope is a scientific instrument that allows us to “see” objects so small that they cannot be seen in any other way. (CITE) Electron microscopes have allowed scientists to see individual molecules and atoms for the first time.

Most microscopes, including those in schools and laboratories today, are optical microscopes. They use glass lenses to enlarge, or magnify, an image. An optical microscope cannot produce an image of an object smaller than the length of the light wave in use. To see anything smaller than 2,000 angstroms (about 1/250,000 of an inch) a wave of shorter length would have to be used. In 1923, a French physicist Louis de Broglie suggested that electrons, like light, travel in a wave. In addition, the wavelength of electrons is much shorter than the wavelength of light.

An electron is an elementary particle carrying a unit of charge of negative electricity.

(CITE) J. J. Thompson discovered the electron in 1897 while showing what cathode rays were composed of. (CITE) The first time that the electron was used for a unit of negative electricity was in the late 19th century by the English physicist G. J. Stoney.

The electron is the lightest particle having a non-zero rest mass. Electrons also have a wavelike property, which made them prime candidates for microscopes and other devices.

Ernst Ruska (190...
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