Interactive Java Tutorials
This tutorial explores how Airy disk sizes (at the limit of optical resolution) vary with changes in objective numerical aperture (NA) and illumination wavelength and how these changes affect the resolution (R) of the objective (lower values for R indicate increasing resolution). Operating instructions are discussed below the tutorial window.
To operate the tutorial, use the slider on the left to adjust the wavelength of illumination. The default value for wavelength is 700 nanometers (the highest wavelength available in this tutorial). As this value is decreased, note how the Airy disk size decreases (and resolution (R) increases). The slider on the right controls numerical aperture value for a hypothetical objective. At fixed wavelength, the right-hand slider will shift numerical aperture values for the objective light cone depicted just above the slider. The light cone size will increase with numerical aperture (at fixed wavelength) and produce a corresponding decrease in the size of the Airy disks (and an increase in resolution).
Mortimer Abramowitz - Olympus America, Inc., Two Corporate Center Drive., Melville, New York, 11747.
Matthew J. Parry-Hill and Michael W. Davidson - National High Magnetic Field Laboratory, 1800 East Paul Dirac Dr., The Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida, 32310.
BACK TO ANATOMY OF THE MICROSCOPE
Questions or comments? Send us an email.
© 1998-2013 by
Michael W. Davidson and The Florida State University.
All Rights Reserved. No images, graphics, scripts, or applets may be reproduced or used in any manner without permission from the copyright holders. Use of this website means you agree to all of the Legal Terms and Conditions set forth by the owners.
Last modification: Wednesday, Mar 26, 2014 at 02:23 PM
Access Count Since June 20, 1998: 22951
For more information on microscope manufacturers,
use the buttons below to navigate to their websites: