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Proceedings Paper

Advances in stereomicroscopy
Author(s): H. Schnitzler; Klaus-Peter Zimmer
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Paper Abstract

Similar to human's binocular vision, stereomicroscopes are comprised of two optical paths under a convergence angle providing a full perspective insight into the world's microstructure. The numerical aperture of stereomicroscopes has continuously increased over the years, reaching the point where the lenses of left and right perspective paths touched each other. This constraint appeared as an upper limit for the resolution of stereomicroscopes, as the resolution of a stereomicroscope was deduced from the numerical apertures of the two equally sized perspective channels. We present the optical design and advances in resolution of the world's first asymmetrical stereomicroscope, which is a technological breakthrough in many aspects of stereomicroscopes. This unique approach uses a large numerical aperture and thus an, so far, unachievable high lateral resolution in the one path, and a small aperture in the other path, which provides a high depth of field ("Fusion Optics"). This new concept is a technical challenge for the optical design of the zoom system as well as for the common main objectives. Furthermore, the new concept makes use of the particular way in which perspective information by binocular vision is formed in the human's brain. In conjunction with a research project at the University of Zurich, Leica Microsystems consolidated the functionality of this concept in to a new generation of stereomicroscopes.

Paper Details

Date Published: 27 September 2008
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 7100, Optical Design and Engineering III, 71000P (27 September 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.797409
Show Author Affiliations
H. Schnitzler, Leica Microsystems (Schweiz) AG (Switzerland)
Klaus-Peter Zimmer, Leica Microsystems (Schweiz) AG (Switzerland)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7100:
Optical Design and Engineering III
Laurent Mazuray; Jean-Luc Tissot; Jeffrey M. Raynor; Rolf Wartmann; Andrew Wood, Editor(s)

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