Microscopes are present in varying particular usage. The most common types of microscopes are the light and the electron microscope. Each of these microscopes bear distinguishing features and is suitable for different purposes. Also, both light and electron microscopes use radiation to form complete images of objects that a human eye cannot view.
The key difference between light and electron microscope is that a beam of electrons is employed for magnifying the image of an object while visible light is used in the light microscope to magnify images of spotted areas of materials or biological specimens.
Differences between electron microscope and light microscope in a tabular column are available on this page.
Definition of Light Microscopes and Electron Microscopes
A light microscope is a tool used to study microbodies such as bacteria, fungus, etc. to identify their features. Also, it enables examination of small objects which are not visible through naked eyes. The light microscope is also known as an optical microscope. It is an instrument that uses light rays and lenses to enlarge images of microorganisms and other small entities.
One has to place the object on a given platform and view the microbe through the eyepieces. Optical ones are of two types - simple and compound microscopes. The simple one utilizes the visual capacity of single or multiple lenses to enlarge objects. In the case of the compound ones, one lens is placed close to the substance for viewing it.
On the other hand, an electron microscope is an instrument that uses electron beams to capture an image and enlarge it. It is an advanced tool that enables a person to visualise smaller entities in high resolution. Through it, you can magnify things in nanometres and scrutinise the objects carefully.
Though the initial work of both the tools is to magnify objects, there is a difference between light and electron microscope.
Difference between a Light Microscope and Electron Microscope
Multiple Choice Questions
1. The type of electron microscope used for studying the internal structure of cells is
Scanning electron microscope (SEM)
Transmission electron microscope (TEM)
2. The magnification power of an optical microscope is
3. Under an electron microscope, you can magnify an object up to
4, 08, 000 times
2, 09, 000 no. of times
3, 00, 000 times
4, 12, 000 number of times
4. The picture taken from a microscope is
Do It Yourself
Which portion of a compound microscope enables focussing the visible light on the object for a viewing?
From our above text on light microscopes and electron microscopes, we understand that light microscopes use visible light to magnify objects that help us view living and dead organisms without the need of a screen for viewing images. However, electron microscopes use electron beams to view dried and dead organisms on the fluorescent screen.