Subscribe to our free daily newsletters
. 24/7 Space News .




Subscribe to our free daily newsletters



INTERNET SPACE
DIY: Scientists release a how-to for building a smartphone microscope
by Staff Writers
Houston TX (SPX) Dec 01, 2017


Fig. 1. (a) Slide-launched TIR-guided illumination: elastically scattered photons are blocked by the filter, while fluorescent photons can reach the smartphone camera. (b) Photorealistic cut-out rendering (c) Assembly procedure: inkjet-printed lens attached onto smartphone camera, smartphone adapter (1) fitted on smartphone, adhesive ring (2) attached to remove stray light, color filter attached on adhesive ring for fluorescence imaging, base ring (3) attached to adapter, threaded barrel (4) with slot enabled z-axis focusing and sample insertion, lid (5) attached to block ambient light, LED module (6) provided illumination. (d) System attached to smartphone.

Add one more thing to the list of tasks your smartphone can perform. University of Houston researchers have released an open-source dataset offering instructions to people interested in building their own smartphone microscope.

The researchers describe the process in a paper published in Biomedical Optics Express, demonstrating that a basic smartphone equipped with an inexpensive inkjet-printed elastomer lens can be converted into a microscope capable of fluorescence microscopy, able to detect waterborne pathogens and perform other diagnostic functions.

Wei-Chuan Shih, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering, said fluorescence microscopy is "a workhorse," used in biology, medical diagnostics and other fields to reveal information about cells and tissue that can't otherwise be detected. The technique allows more information to be harvested from fluid, tissue and other samples, but not everyone has access to an optical microscope that can use fluorescence.

It could extend sophisticated imaging techniques to rural areas and developing countries, Shih said. But it also could have more widespread applications, such as allowing backpackers an easy way to test for pathogens in rivers and streams.

"We really hope anyone who wants to build it can," he said. "All the pieces can be made with a 3-D printer. It's not something that belongs just to the lab."

The work was partially funded with a $100,000 grant from the National Science Foundation's citizen science initiative, which encourages scientists to find ways to expand knowledge of and access to research.

Shih's lab created an inexpensive lens that can turn a smartphone into a microscope in 2015; he and members of the lab created a company to produce and distribute the inkjet-printed lenses, which attach directly to a smartphone camera lens.

They continue efforts to improve on that process, and in an article published earlier this fall in Applied Optics they reported engineering a platform - constructed with low-cost parts including LEGO bricks and plastic imaging components - to ensure high-throughput quality inspection of the inkjet-printed lenses.

The lenses were used in the work reported in Biomedical Optics Express, which details how the researchers combined simple LED lighting with a 3-D printed cartridge designed to hold a conventional glass slide. The light and cartridge attach to the smartphone.

While conventional tabletop microscopes shine light through the sample from above, the Shih lab's technology launches the light from the side of the slide, which is about one millimeter thick. The LED light travels through the glass, refracting to allow the observer to view cell nuclei and structure.

That's both less expensive and less complicated to operate, Shih said.

"To pursue ultra-simplicity for open-source do-it-yourself fluorescence smartphone microscopy, we report the development of an integrated single lens add-on for multi-color fluorescence imaging," the researchers wrote. In addition to Shih, those involved with the project include Yulung Sung, a doctoral student in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at UH, and undergraduate Fernando Campa.

Results from testing water samples for pathogens including Giardia lamblia and Cyrptosporidium parvum using the technology were compared with results obtained using a tabletop optical microscope. Resolution was slightly higher with the optical microscope, but the researchers reported resolution of two microns with the smartphone technology.

Shih said he looks forward to seeing the device used by people outside the scientific community.

"I feel more and more excited about seeing people adopt simple basic scientific gadgets," he said. "I think it will have more impact if we let people play with it, rather than trying to hold it as a secret. We should make it as easy and accessible as possible for everyone."

INTERNET SPACE
Breakthrough could launch organic electronics beyond cell phone screens
Princeton NJ (SPX) Nov 27, 2017
A discovery by an international team of researchers from Princeton University, the Georgia Institute of Technology and Humboldt University in Berlin points the way to more widespread use of an advanced technology generally known as organic electronics. The research, published Nov. 13 in the journal Nature Materials, focuses on organic semiconductors, a class of materials prized for their a ... read more

Related Links
University of Houston
Satellite-based Internet technologies


Thanks for being here;
We need your help. The SpaceDaily news network continues to grow but revenues have never been harder to maintain.

With the rise of Ad Blockers, and Facebook - our traditional revenue sources via quality network advertising continues to decline. And unlike so many other news sites, we don't have a paywall - with those annoying usernames and passwords.

Our news coverage takes time and effort to publish 365 days a year.

If you find our news sites informative and useful then please consider becoming a regular supporter or for now make a one off contribution.

SpaceDaily Contributor
$5 Billed Once


credit card or paypal
SpaceDaily Monthly Supporter
$5 Billed Monthly


paypal only

Comment using your Disqus, Facebook, Google or Twitter login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

INTERNET SPACE
Building for a future in space: An interview with Dava Newman and Gui Trotti

Space Farms: 'Mark Watney in The Martian Was Right to Add Poop to the Soil'

NASA successfully fires Voyager 1 thrusters after 37 years

New motion sensors major step towards cheaper wearable technology

INTERNET SPACE
ISRO eyes one rocket launch a month in 2018

Russia to build launch pad for super heavy-lift carrier by 2028

Mechanisms are critical to all space vehicles

Russia loses contact with satellite after launch from new spaceport

INTERNET SPACE
Earthworms can reproduce in Mars-like soil

Opportunity Greets Winter Solstice

NASA builds its next Mars rover mission

Scientists developed a new sensor for future missions to the Moon and Mars

INTERNET SPACE
Nation 'leads world' in remote sensing technology

China plans for nuclear-powered interplanetary capacity by 2040

China plans first sea based launch by 2018

China's reusable spacecraft to be launched in 2020

INTERNET SPACE
Going green to the Red Planet

Orbital ATK purchase by Northrop Grumman approved by shareholders

UK space launch program receives funding boost from Westminster

Need to double number of operational satellites: ISRO chief

INTERNET SPACE
Quantum optics allows us to abandon expensive lasers in spectroscopy

Spin current from heat: New material increases efficiency

New catalyst controls activation of a carbon-hydrogen bond

Math gets real in strong, lightweight structures

INTERNET SPACE
Scientists identify key factors that help microbes thrive in harsh environments

Exoplanet Has Smothering Stratosphere Without Water

Scientists study Earth's earliest life forms in Nevada hot spring

Traces of life on nearest exoplanets may be hidden in equatorial trap

INTERNET SPACE
Pluto's hydrocarbon haze keeps dwarf planet colder than expected

Jupiter's Stunning Southern Hemisphere

Watching Jupiter's multiple pulsating X-ray Aurora

Help Nickname New Horizons' Next Flyby Target




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News






The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement