A NEW microscope objective from Olympus claims a new world record numerical aperture (NA) of 1.7, enabling the highest Z-resolution ever recorded for a Total Internal Reflection Fluorescence (TIRF) microscope, says the company.
The practical benefits of this performance include extremely thin penetration depth and high signal-to-noise ratio, making the lens ideal for high quality single molecule imaging and analysis in cells.
The high NA gives makes the Apo N100x HOTIRF objective suitable for a range of applications requiring very high Z-resolution and sensitive fluorescent detection.
The record-breaking NA is achieved through innovative optical design and a special sapphire glass, used in combination with a low auto-fluorescence (reduced noise) immersion oil that has a very high refraction index.
Olympus says the lens improves single molecule dynamic studies, due to the enhanced signal-to-noise ratio offered when detecting surface-bound molecules, with minimal background emission from molecules in the surrounding solution.
The objective is also designed to provide the optical performance required for super resolution applications and TIRF co-localisation studies, with extremely high spatial resolution generated by thin optical slices at the surface of the specimen.
With a magnification of x100, the new lens is also suited for in vitro TIRF microscopy, for example when studying cytoskeletal dynamics or other cellular components in solution.