Lens-free microscope breakthrough

Xinhua
China's Nanjing University of Science and Technology has unveiled a lens-free digital holography microscope "CyteLive."
Xinhua

China’s Nanjing University of Science and Technology has unveiled a lens-free digital holography microscope “CyteLive” that can achieve high precision and a large field of view at the same time.

Developed by a team of the university’s students, the instrument won the gold prize at the 5th China College Students’ “Internet+” Innovation and Entrepreneurship Competition last month in east China’s Zhejiang Province.

Without a traditional optical lens, the instrument just comprises a light source and a sensor.

It is only 0.8 percent the size of a conventional microscope which is usually bulky and large, and can be easily lifted with one hand, said project leader Lu Linpeng, also a doctoral candidate at the university.

By leveraging computational microscopic imaging technologies, students developed algorithms that can reconstruct a high-resolution image based on a series of low-resolution images.

The CyteLive can offer a field of view 200 times greater than a conventional microscope, with a single image up to 100 megapixels.

It can capture 100,000 blood cells simultaneously.

Because cells are transparent, researchers usually have to stain and label cells with artificial fluorophores, which, can damage or even kill cells.


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