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Scanning Photon Microscope

The laser scanning microscopy is a well-established visualising method for different fields of application. The objects being detected are raster scanned by a focusing laser beam and the light diffused from the samples surface is collected by a suitable mounted detector. However, systems which are currently available on the market, are very voluminous and cost-intensive. That is why the possibilities for applications are limited.

The Fraunhofer IPMS presents an alternative with its “Scanning Photon Microscope”. It works on a similar principle but uses a two-dimensional resonant microscanning mirror developed at the Fraunhofer IPMS for the deflection of light. Various possibilities for miniaturization of the system result from the minimal dimension of the mirror (4 x 3 mm2).

The presented demonstrator with a dimension of 4 x 10 x 20 cm collects pictures of 1000 x 1000 pixels with a resolution of 10 µm per pixel. Therefore the image area is 1 x 1 cm. By changing the optical design it is possible to increase the performance parameters. Very interesting for future applications is the possibility to choose the wave length of the radiated light and therefore to activate processes like fluorescence and to evaluate them wave length specific.

Non-destructive testing, e.g. to detect microcracks, or the biotechnology are potential fields of application. Measurements are possible both in the illuminated area and in the dark field.

Ines Schedwill | alfa
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