single molecules with a digital camera!

April 19, 2006 at 4:58 pm | | cool results, everyday science, hardware, single molecules

These are single fluorescent molecules imaged using a microscope and a hand-held consumer digital SLR camera (i.e. Nikon D90):


I think that’s pretty impressive. Usually, we use expensive, cooled CCD cameras which are very sensitive and designed for scientific imaging. Here, I used a (cheaper) conventional digital camera and even got a color image. This is possible in part because this fluorophore (one of the Moerner/Twieg labs’ DCDHF dyes) is super bright and long-lived!

3-d surface

April 11, 2006 at 4:31 pm | | cool results, everyday science, single molecules, software

A fellow labmember showed me how to use MatLab to make a 3-dimensional surface from an image of single fluorescent molecules, where z is the intensity. Here’s a taste. I converted this:

into this:

The funny thing is that the pretty image is only that: it actually contains less information than the 2-d grayscale image, becuase it needed smoothing and convolving with Gaussians to make it look so nice. But that kinda shit brings in the big $$.

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