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Getting Fuzzy Or Blurry Images With Your Microscope? The Auto Focus May Need Piezo Stages

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Doing important scientific research often requires using high-powered microscopes to zoom in very small items, such as individual cells. Focus is so important here, but if your microscope is sending back blurry images, your auto focus may be malfunctioning. However, knowing how to install piezo stages can help you avoid this problem.

How Auto Focus Works

Auto focus on any kind of lens item, including cameras and microscopes, works in about the same way. Basically, it uses scanners to quickly gauge the distance between you and the item on which you are focusing. It will then use a variety of nanopositioners (small motors that carefully move and change the position of your focus in very minute ways) to focus your microscope appropriately.

When your microscope starts sending back blurry or out-of-focus pictures, that means your auto focus is malfunctioning. There are a variety of causes for this, many of which include problems with the nanopositioners. One solution for this problem is installing new piezo stages in your microscope.

How Piezo Stages Can Help

Piezo stages are very accurate nanopositioners that can easily be installed in your microscope. They will not only replace the malfunctioning positioner, but they are also more accurate and precise than other systems. Some experts estimate that piezo stages are 10 times faster than other auto focusing systems.

As a result, an increasing number of people in the scientific world (especially those who work in biological imaging, high-speed inspection, and laser processing worlds) are turning to these stages. Installing them in your microscope isn't too difficult.

Installing A Piezo Stage

Opening up your microscope and installing piezo stages is designed to be relatively simple. To install a piezo stage in your microscope, follow these simple steps:

  • Open your microscope back and inspect it for the auto focus stages—these should be labeled
  • Carefully remove them with an appropriate screwdriver
  • Purchase piezo stages that are the right shape and size for your microscope—should match the stages you removed
  • Place in the new stages and tighten the screws to hold them in place

This process will vary slightly based on your microscope. For example, there's a chance that some stages will be spring-loaded, meaning that you will have to carefully remove them from the spring to avoid popping them out.

Now that you better understand the importance of piezo stages in your microscope and how to install them, you should rarely have focus problems again. However, persistent problems may require professional repair services.