"Fun and games with microscopes"
Prof. Jerome Mertz
Department of Bioengineering
Optical microscopes have become indispensable tools in biomedical laboratories. However, conventional microscopes often have difficulty imaging deep in scattering media, or over large ranges of sample brightness, or over extended volumes at high speed. I will describe various techniques to mitigate these difficulties, using simple add-ons to commercial microscopes. Specifically, I will describe a phase contrast technique that works in arbitrarily thick tissue that can be used as a wavefront sensor for adaptive optics. I will also describe a digital feedback approach to increase the dynamic range of scanning microscopes by several orders of magnitude, with no loss of information or degradation in speed. Finally, I will present a simple, light efficient technique to achieve pseudo-volumetric imaging using a fast MEMS deformable mirror. These techniques can be applied to microscopes and, in some cases, to high-resolution endoscopes.