Digital optical microscopy

The optical microscope, often referred to as the "light microscope," uses visible light and a system of lenses to magnify images of small samples. 

In practice, the lowest detectable feature size is around 0.2 micrometers (200 nm). The digital optical microscopes at Arkema Analytical Solutions are equipped with a high resolution digital camera that allows the capturing of images with exceptional detail.


Some applications of digital optical microscopy include:

  • Thickness measurement of thin coatings and films or individual layers in multilayer structures
  • Correlation of surface appearance and surface morphology
  • Characterization of size, size distribution, and dispersion of additives in composites and blends
  • Characterization of cell size and size distribution in foam materials
  • Identification of location and size of contaminants in single or multilayer materials
  • Defect analysis
  • Qualitative assessment of stress induced or natural anisotropy
  • Imaging of crystalline phases in semicrystalline polymers (e.g., spherulites, dendrites)