CONVENTIONAL OPTICAL MICROSCOPY
Historically, most microscopy has been achieved by means of conventional optical microscopy. Conventional optical microscopes are unable to resolve features that are less than about 200 nm in size.
Image distortion, illustrated in the accompanying figure, occurs when images are formed conventionally. The size of each image feature is roughly the same as the size of the undistorted (ideal) image feature plus the size of the spot formed by the imaging system (lens). Such imaging, when done very well, is said to be diffraction limited. Until recently, the diffraction of light has placed a fundamental limit (the diffraction limit) on the minimum size of objects that can be observed. Resolution is seriously limited.
Non-optical microscopy techniques, such as electron microscopy and atomic force microscopy, have been used to resolve features that are less than about 200 nm in size. However, these techniques are often destructive in nature. Furthermore, some samples (such as cellular samples) require that samples be fixed in place. This fixation is unsatisfactory for many purposes.
SUPER-RESOLUTION OPTICAL MICROSCOPY
COMPLETE RESOLUTION OPTICAL MICROSCOPY
Mulith Inc.’s RIF-Scope is an application of the company’s proprietary RIF technology. When RIF technology is used, the bandwidth of the light used for image formation is well within the passband of the imaging system that is used. This light is transferred, without amplitude or phase distortion, through the imaging system. All components of the light needed for image formation contribute to image formation. The commonly accepted optical diffraction limit is entirely avoided when RIF is used. No fundamental resolution limit exists. Resolution is complete.
RESOLUTION AND MAGNIFICATION
Magnification can be achieved readily and is not a significant concern. However, avoiding the optical diffraction limit is not so easily done unless RIF is used.
Mulith Inc.'s competitors include producers of super-resolution optical microscopes and non-optical microscopes, such as atomic force microscopes and electron microscopes. However, there is currently no nanoscale microscope on the market that competes well relevant to the benefits associated with Mulith Inc.'s RIF-Scope.