The Horrors Of Electron Microscopy

Maybe you’ve been sleeping really well lately and you’re bored of that now. Or maybe you’ve finally got around to reading the masterpiece of science fiction that is Frank Herbert’s epic Dune trilogy and now you’re wondering what one of those sandworms might actually look like.

In either case, you’re going to just love these crazy images of various nutty looking creatures taken with electron microscopes.

The good news is that the width of field in these pictures, all taken with FEI electron microscopes, is measured in the micrometres.┬áSo some of the guys featured in this rogues’ gallery are amongst the smallest living things on the planet. Combine that with the pretty far-out places many of them live- think deep sea hydrothermal vents- and you’ll be relieved to know that you’re never going to bump into any of them in real life.

Spider’s Head magnified 50 times.

Spider's head magnified
Image courtesy of Oliver Meckes

Mosquito Eyes magnified 450x.

Mosquito eyes magnified 450 times
Photo by Oliver Meckes

Head Of A Moth

Moth head magnified
Photo by Angelika Reichmann, Coloured by Margit Wallner

Tardigr E granul

This is a Water Bear, an animal built only on a few hundred cells, magnified 7oo times. It lives in moss and ‘wakes’ when the moss gets wet, feeding on it by sucking the cells. If the moss cells dry out the Water Bears encapsulates itself for up to a year, waiting for the rain.

Tardigrade water creature magnified
Image courtesy of Oliver Meckes

Tardigr Pm kenianus at 300x magnification.

This tardigrade, first discovered in Africa, feeds on bacteria and protozoan.

Tardigr water creature magnified
Image courtesy of Oliver Meckes

Worm polychaete

Polychaete worm magnified
Image courtesy of Philippe Crassous

Hydrothermal marine worms

Marine worm magnified
Hydrothermal worm magnified
Hydrothermal marine worm magnified
Tube worm magnified
Marine organism magnified
Images courtesy of Philippe Crassous

Argulus freshwater parasite

Argulus parasite magnified
Image courtesy of Ken Bart

If that’s only just whet your appetite for the terrors of microscopy and you’re hungry for more, you’ll want to check out the FEI photostream.

via InspirationGreen


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One Response to “The Horrors Of Electron Microscopy”

  1. E.N. Fatokun

    The ocean is indeed an ‘ocean’ of creatures. Incredible images, and a great source of inspiration for movie makers!

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