Melvyn Bragg and his guests discuss the microscope, from its invention in the 17th century to the latest sophisticated imaging techniques.
Melvyn Bragg and his guests discuss the development of the microscope, an instrument which has revolutionised our knowledge of the world and the organisms that inhabit it. In the seventeenth century the pioneering work of two scientists, the Dutchman Antonie van Leeuwenhoek and Robert Hooke in England, revealed the teeming microscopic world that exists at scales beyond the capabilities of the naked eye.
The microscope became an essential component of scientific enquiry by the nineteenth century, but in the 1930s a German physicist, Ernst Ruska, discovered that by using a beam of electrons he could view structures much tinier than was possible using visible light. Today light and electron microscopy are among the most powerful tools at the disposal of modern science, and new techniques are still being developed.
Visiting Keeper at the Science Museum in London
Sir Colin Humphreys
Professor of Materials Science and Director of Research at the University of Cambridge
Professor of Cell Biology at the University of Leeds
Producer: Thomas Morris.
LINKS AND FURTHER READING
Ivan Amato, Stuff: The Materials the World is Made Of (Basic Books, 1998)
S. Bradbury, The Evolution of the Microscope (Pergamon Press, 1967)
R. W. Cahn, The Coming of Materials Science (Pergamon, 2001)
L. Marton, Early History of the Electron Microscope (San Francisco Press, 1968)
Edward G. Ruestow, The Microscope in the Dutch Republic: The Shaping of Discovery (Cambridge University Press, 1996)
Gerard Turner, Essays on the History of the Microscope (Senecio, 1980)
|Interviewed Guest||Jim Bennett|
|Interviewed Guest||Colin Humphreys|
|Interviewed Guest||Michelle Peckham|