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Cell phone digital microscopy using an oil droplet

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journal contribution
posted on 10.12.2021, 17:56 by NA Szydlowski, H Jing, M Alqashmi, Ying HuYing Hu
We introduce an accessible cell phone imaging method using small droplets of microscope immersion oil and consumer-grade oils. Oil droplets were more resistant to evaporation than water droplets, and they resolved cellular structures that were visible using a 20x/0.75 objective. We optically characterized the droplets using a cell phone screen and resolution target. We further obtained cellular resolution images of an onion epidermis and a zea stem cross-section sample. Our droplet-based method enables stable optical imaging for diagnostic and educational purposes without custom setups, specialized components, or manufacturing processes.


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Szydlowski, N. A., Jing, H., Alqashmi, M.Hu, Y. S. (2020). Cell phone digital microscopy using an oil droplet. Biomedical Optics Express, 11(5), 2328-2338. https://doi.org/10.1364/BOE.389345


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